Constipation impacts around 20% of people in the United States, leading to 8 million medical professional sees annually.
Individuals might experience irregularity due to the foods they eat or avoid, their way of life options, the medications they take, or the medical conditions they have. For many, the cause of their persistent constipation is unknown. This is known as chronic idiopathic constipation.
Irregularity is characterized by the following symptoms:
- fewer than three defecation weekly
- hard, dry, or lumpy stools
- trouble or pain when passing stools
- a sensation that not all stool has passed
Constipation can have a major negative effect on quality of life, in addition to on physical and psychological health.
There are many natural methods to assist alleviate constipation. People can do these in the convenience of their own homes, and the majority of them are supported by science.
Here are 13 natural home solutions to eliminate constipation.
Consume More Water
Being dehydrated frequently can make a person constipated. To avoid this, it is essential to drink enough water and remain hydrated.
When an individual is constipated, they might find remedy for consuming some carbonated (shimmering) water. This can assist them rehydrate and get things moving again.
Some studies have actually found gleaming water to be more effective than faucet water at relieving irregularity. This consists of in individuals with indigestion, or dyspepsia, and people with persistent idiopathic constipation.
However, consuming carbonated drinks such as sweet soda is not a great concept, as these drinks can have hazardous health effects and might make constipation even worse.
Some people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) discover that soft drinks worsen their symptoms, so these individuals may wish to prevent carbonated water and other soft drinks.
Bottom line: Dehydration can cause constipation, so make sure to drink enough water. Carbonated water might be a lot more efficient at eliminating constipation.
Consume More Fiber, Especially Soluble, Non-fermentable Fiber
To treat irregularity, physicians frequently inform people to increase their dietary fiber consumption.
This is because increasing fiber intake increases the bulk and consistency of defecation, making them much easier to pass. It also helps them travel through the gastrointestinal system more quickly.
In fact, one 2016 review found that 77% of people with persistent irregularity took advantage of supplementing with fiber.
Nevertheless, some research studies have found that increasing fiber consumption can actually make the problem worse. Others report that dietary fiber enhances stool frequency however may not aid with other symptoms of constipation, such as stool consistency, discomfort, bloating, and gas (16, 17).
This is due to the fact that various kinds of dietary fiber have various effects on food digestion.
There are various dietary fibers, but in general, they fall under 2 categories: insoluble fibers and soluble fibers.
Insoluble fibers — present in wheat bran, vegetables, and whole grains– add bulk to stools and might assist them pass quicker and easily through the digestion system.
Soluble fibers — present in oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, and peas, as well as some vegetables and fruits — soak up water and form a gel-like paste, which softens the stools and improves its consistency.
Non-fermentable soluble fibers, such as psyllium, are the finest option for dealing with constipation.
One 2020 review discovered psyllium to be 3.4 times more efficient than insoluble wheat bran for irregularity.
Various brand names of psyllium fiber are readily available online.
Research studies analyzing the effects of insoluble fiber as a treatment for constipation have actually yielded combined results.
This is partly since insoluble fiber can make the issue worse in some people with a functional bowel problem, such as IBS or chronic idiopathic irregularity.
Some fermentable soluble fibers might likewise be inefficient at dealing with constipation, as they are fermented by germs in the gut and lose their water-holding capability.
To prevent constipation, people ought to intend to take in a mix of soluble and insoluble fibers. The total advised fiber consumption each day is 25 grams (g) for females and 38 g for males.
Bottom line: Try eating more high fiber foods. Supplementing the diet with soluble non-fermentable fiber, such as psyllium, can likewise help.
Different research study studies have reported that exercise might assist improve the symptoms of irregularity.
Research studies have linked inactive way of lives with an increased risk of constipation. Since of this, some healthcare specialists advise increasing exercise to get the stool moving.
That stated, not all research studies agree that exercise deals with constipation. Therefore, more research study is required.
Other research studies have reported that although workout did not always improve the number of times individuals went to the bathroom, it did minimize some symptoms and enhanced people’s quality of life scores.
In people with IBS, moderate workout (brisk walking) can enhance digestive symptoms and lifestyle ratings. Nevertheless, energetic workout (jogging) might make signs worse for some.
Try doing some gentle workout — such as going for regular strolls, swimming, cycling, or jogging — to see if it helps.
Bottom line: Exercise might decrease the symptoms of constipation in some individuals.
Consume Coffee, Especially Caffeinated Coffee
For some individuals, taking in coffee can increase the urge to go to the bathroom. This is because coffee stimulates the muscles in the digestive system.
In reality, one 1998 research study found that caffeinated coffee can stimulate the gut in the exact same method that a meal can. This result was 60% more powerful than drinking water and 23% stronger than drinking decaffeinated coffee.
Coffee may likewise consist of small quantities of soluble fibers that help prevent constipation by enhancing the balance of gut bacteria.
That stated, the bowel-stimulating qualities of caffeine may be stronger in individuals with IBS. It might likewise make gastrointestinal symptoms even worse.
People with IBS can try eliminating caffeine from their diet plan to see if it helps.
Discover more about foods and drinks that can ease irregularity here.
Bottom line: Coffee can assist eliminate irregularity by stimulating the muscles in the gut. It might likewise consist of percentages of soluble fiber.
Take Senna, an Herbal Laxative
Senna is a popular safe and efficient herbal laxative that helps treat irregularity. It is offered over-the-counter and online, in both oral and rectal kinds.
Senna consists of plant substances called glycosides, which promote the nerves in the gut and assist speed up defecation.
Doctors think about Senna safe for adults for short amount of times, but people should consult a medical professional if their signs do not go away after a couple of days.
Doctors typically do not advise Senna for pregnant females, those who are breastfeeding, or individuals with specific health conditions, such as inflammatory bowel illness.
Bottom line: The natural laxative Senna is a popular remedy for constipation. It promotes the nerves in the gut to accelerate bowel motions.
Consume Probiotic Foods or Take Probiotic Supplements
Probiotics may assist avoid chronic constipation. Probiotics are live, helpful bacteria that naturally happen in the gut. They consist of Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus.
Individuals can increase their levels by eating probiotic foods.
Some individuals who have persistent irregularity have an imbalance of bacteria in their gut. Consuming more probiotic foods could assist enhance this balance and avoid irregularity.
A 2019 review discovered that taking probiotics for 2 weeks can help treat irregularity, increasing stool frequency and stool consistency.
They could also assist deal with constipation by producing short-chain fats. These may improve gut motions, making it simpler to pass stools.
Additionally, try a probiotic supplement. Some studies have found that people started to feel the benefits of these supplements after 4 weeks.
Try taking probiotic supplements, which are available online, or consuming more probiotic-rich foods to see if this aids with constipation. Prebiotic foods include:.
Bottom line: Probiotics may help deal with chronic constipation. Attempt consuming probiotic foods or taking a supplement.
Non-prescription or Prescription Laxatives
A person can speak to a doctor or pharmacist about selecting a suitable laxative. Various types have differing techniques of action, however all are reliable for constipation.
A doctor may recommend one of the list below types:
- Bulking agents: These are fiber-based laxatives that increase the water content of stool.
- Stool conditioners: These consist of oils to soften stools and ease their passage through the gut.
- Stimulant laxatives: These promote the nerves in the gut to increase bowel motions.
- Osmotic laxatives: These soften stool by pulling water from the surrounding tissues into the digestive system.
Nevertheless, people need to not take most of these laxatives on a regular basis without talking to a physician.
Bottom line: Laxatives work for alleviating constipation. Speak to a physician or pharmacist about the best ones to use.
Try a Low FODMAP Diet
Constipation can be a sign of IBS. The low FODMAP diet plan is a removal diet plan that helps deal with IBS and might relieve IBS-related irregularity.
FODMAP means fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols.
The diet plan includes limiting high FODMAP foods for a period of time prior to reintroducing them to figure out which ones the body can endure.
In individuals with constipation-predominant IBS, the low FODMAP diet alone is typically inadequate.
Such people will most likely need to pay attention to other aspects of their diet plan, such as getting sufficient water and fiber, to experience relief from their symptoms.
Bottom line: A low FODMAP diet plan might help eliminate IBS-related irregularity. Nevertheless, that alone might not supply adequate relief.
Eat Shirataki Noodles or Take a Glucomannan Supplement
Glucomannan is a kind of soluble fiber from the roots of the konjac plant. Some research recommends that it is efficient versus constipation.
Along with enhancing bowel movements, glucomannan might act as a prebiotic to improve the balance of excellent bacteria in the gut.
One research study in kids discovered that 45% of those taking glucomannan experienced relief from severe irregularity, compared to only 13% in the control group.
Nevertheless, another regulated study found no substantial effects.
People can get glucomannan from supplements or by eating shirataki, or konjac, noodles.
Glucomannan supplements are likewise offered. They differ in their benefits by brand name, so it is best to compare brands before buying. Glucomannan supplements are offered online.
Bottom line: Glucomannan may help deal with irregularity in some people. Sources include supplements and shirataki noodles.
Eat Prebiotic Foods
Prebiotics are an indigestible carbohydrate fiber. Prebiotics include oligosaccharide and inulin.
Although dietary fibers reduce constipation by enhancing the consistency and bulk of stool, prebiotics have their effects by improving digestion health.
Prebiotic fibers enhance digestion health by feeding the helpful bacteria in the gut, which increases probiotics and improves the balance of the gut bacteria.
In fact, some prebiotics may assist increase the frequency of bowel movements, along with make stools softer.
Prebiotic foods include:
- Jerusalem artichokes.
Bottom line: Foods which contain prebiotic fibers can enhance digestive health and the balance of beneficial gut bacteria. Prebiotics may assist alleviate irregularity.
Attempt Magnesium Citrate
Magnesium citrate is a popular house treatment versus irregularity. It is a kind of osmotic laxative that individuals can purchase over-the-counter or online.
Taking moderate amounts of magnesium supplements can assist eliminate irregularity. Doctors utilize higher does to prepare and clean out the bowel prior to surgical treatment or other medical procedures.
Bottom line: Taking magnesium citrate, an over the counter supplement, can help eliminate irregularity.
People typically tout prunes and prune juice as nature’s remedy for constipation — and for great reason. Prunes might be the most accessible natural option offered.
In addition to fiber, prunes include sorbitol. This is a sugar alcohol that has a laxative impact.
Some research studies have revealed that prunes may be more efficient than fibers such as psyllium.
The effective dosage might be around 50 g, or 7 medium prunes, two times per day.
However, people with IBS might wish to prevent prunes, since sugar alcohols are high FODMAP foods.
Find out more about prune juice for constipation and other juices for constipation here.
Bottom line: Prunes contain the sugar alcohol sorbitol, which has a laxative result. Prunes can be a really effective treatment for irregularity.
Try Avoiding Dairy
In people with an intolerance to it, consuming dairy can trigger irregularity due to its effect on the gut’s movements.
This includes children who are intolerant to cow’s milk protein and adults with lactose intolerance.
If somebody believes a dairy intolerance, they can see their physician for medical diagnosis. The doctor may recommend temporarily removing dairy from the diet plan, while increasing other calcium-rich foods, to see if it enhances the symptoms.
Bottom line: Dairy or lactose intolerance may trigger irregularity in some people. In these people, getting rid of dairy from the diet can assist alleviate signs.
Constipation is uncomfortable and has a number of potential underlying causes. Nevertheless, lots of home treatments and natural techniques can assist.
If irregularity continues, an individual can talk to their medical professional to identify the cause and discover an effective treatment.
That said, many of the natural home remedy in this short article can offer considerable relief.