Less Fluid less Fibre: Constipation


Constipation results; when waste material moves too slowly through the large bowel, resulting in infrequent or painful elimination. Constipation can give rise to many different ailments, including appendicitis, bad breath, body odour, coated tongue, depression, diverticulitis, fatigue, gas, headaches, haemorrhoids (piles), hernia, indigestion, insomnia, malabsorption syndrome, obesity and varicose veins. It may even be involved in the development of serious diseases such as bowel cancer.

It is important that the bowels move on a daily basis. The colon is a holding tank for the waste matter that should be removed within 18 to 24 hours and if not; harmful toxins can form after this period. Antigens and toxins from bowel bacteria and undigested food particles may play a role in the development of diabetes mellitus, meningitis, myasthenia gravis, thyroid disease, candidiasis, chronic gas and bloating, migraines, fatigue and ulcerative colitis.

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In most cases, constipation arises from insufficient amounts of fibre and fluids in the diet. Other contributory factors; include inadequate exercise, advanced age, muscle disorders, structural abnormalities, bowel disease, neuro-genic disorders and a poor diet, especially heavy consumption of junk food. Constipation may be a side effect of iron supplements and some drugs, such as painkillers and antidepressants. It is also common during pregnancy.

High levels of calcium and low levels of thyroid hormone are two metabolic disturbances that can lead to constipation. People with kidney failure or diabetes; also tend to have problems with constipation. In older individuals, constipation is often caused by dehydration; in people of any age, depression can be a factor.

A small percentage of people, such as persons with spinal injuries, have problems with constipation because the nerves that usually regulate bowel movement have been damaged or destroyed. In a condition called Hirschsprung’s disease, normal excretion of feces is impossible because the nerves inside the bowel are missing. The nerve cells in the wall of the colon can also be damaged by long-term, habitual use of laxatives. When this happens, constipation is inevitable.  A thrombosed haemorrhoid, anal fissure, or a pocket of infection at the anus can create a spasm of pain strong enough to contract the muscles and hinder the evacuation of stools.


*Psyllium seed is helpful for constipation. If you take psyllium seed, be sure to take it with a full glass of water.

*Flaxseed oil or freshly ground flaxseeds help to soften stools.  Freshly ground flaxseeds have a pleasant, nutty taste and can be sprinkled over cereals, salads or other foods.

flax and phyillum*It helps to fast; periodically.

*Kombucha tea, which has detoxifying and immune-boosting properties, may be beneficial for relieving constipation.

If added natural fibre and herbal laxatives do not improve constipation, you may have a problem with muscle co-ordination. Normally, the upper muscles in the bowel contract as the lower ones relax.  Problems occur if the lower muscle tightens and goes into a spasm instead of relaxing.

If constipation is more than an occasional problem, the possibility of cancer or another obstruction in the lower bowel should not be dismissed unless a proctoscipic examination or a barium enema has shown that there is no blockage.  Other symptoms of colon cancer include the presence of blood in the feces; severe cramping; a tender, distended abdomen and markedly narrowed stools. However, cancer may be present even without these symptoms. Foul-smelling stools and a burning feeling in the anus may be signs of acidosis.


Alternating constipation and diarrhea may be a sign of irritable bowel syndrome. While this disorder is chronic and unpleasant, it is not dangerous.  Other common symptoms are crampy pains, gassiness, and variation in the consistency of the stool. Though the cause of irritable bowel syndrome is not known, many experts believe it is stress related.


*Eat high-fibre foods such as fresh fruits, raw green leafy vegetables, and brown rice daily. Also eat asparagus, beans, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, garlic, kale, okra, peas, sweet potatoes and whole grains.

*Drink more water. This is important when adding fibre to the diet. Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day, whether you are thirsty or not.


*Consume plenty of foods that are high in pectins, such as apples, carrots, beets, bananas, cabbage, citrus fruits, dried peas, and okra. Pectin is also available in supplement form.

*Follow a low-fat diet. Eat no fried foods.

*Avoid foods that stimulate secretions by the mucous membranes, such as dairy products, fats, and spicy foods.

*Do not consume dairy products, soft drinks, meat, white flour, highly processed foods, salt, coffee, alcohol or sugar.  These foods are difficult to digest and have little or no fibre.

*For quick relief of constipation, drink a large glass of quality water every 10 minutes for half an hour. This can work wonders to flush out toxins and relieve constipation.

*Eat prunes or figs. These are the best natural laxatives.

*Eat smaller portions – no large; heavy meals.

*Consume barley juice or wheatgrass for chlorophyll.

activity-level*Get some exercise. Physical activity speeds the movement of waste through the intestines. A 10-minute walk; can often relieve constipation. Regular exercise is also important for preventing constipation in the first place.

*Go to the toilet at the same time each day, even if the urge does not exist, and relax. Stress tightens the muscles and can cause constipation. Many people find reading helpful as a way to relax.

*Never repress the urge to defecate.

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*Keep the bowel clean.

*If constipation is persistent, take cleansing enemas.finally-pooped

*Do not consume products containing mineral oil, which can interfere with the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins.  Also avoid taking Epsom salts, milk of magnesia and citrate of magnesia, which draw volumes of fluid into the intestines and wash out minerals from the body

*Heavy laxatives users should take acidophilus to replace the ‘friendly’ bacteria. The continued use of laxatives cleans out the intestinal bacteria and leads to chronic constipation.


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4 thoughts on “Less Fluid less Fibre: Constipation”

  1. As someone who constantly suffers from constipation this is one of the best articles I have read on this topic. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I am so glad this article has put a smile on your face. Thanks for always been a faithful reader. Do keep the body moving by exercising, increase your fibre and fluid intake.

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