The constipation diet is as important as the medication that your doctor has prescribed for your constipation.

It’s important for your constipation what foods you eat and what you drink. Because eating the right foods can help you get rid of your condition.

Best foods to relieve constipation

Two things are of primary importance: one is having enough fiber in your food and the other is having enough intake of liquids to help the fiber function better. We will discuss why these two matter in this condition.

How does fiber help in constipation?

Fiber is a type of complex carbohydrate that the body cannot digest. The body breaks down most carbohydrates into glucose but cannot break down fiber. The fiber, therefore, passes out of the gut through the stools undigested.

However, though our body does not digest fiber, you require having enough fiber in your food every day for good health.

It performs useful functions. Besides improving bowel movements and gut health, it helps to lower raised blood cholesterol and sugar levels, thereby lowering the risk of heart disease.

Since fiber is not digested and absorbed, it softens and increases the bulk of your stool. This makes it easier to pass stools and prevent constipation.

In contrast, if you have loose stools, fiber solidifies the stool by absorbing water from it and adding bulk.

Fiber is of two types: soluble and insoluble and both are vital for a healthy digestive system. Both these types make stool bulkier and softer, which makes it easier to pass. It acts like a sweeper and sweeps the waste out of the digestive tract.

You, therefore, need to get your required quota of fiber from your foods every day. According to Mayo Clinic, women should get 21 to 25 grams and men need to consume 30 to 38 grams daily from food.

Remember to eat right and go slow when taking in fiber. Eating too much too fast can cause bloating.

Currently, on average, the American adult consumes only 15 grams of dietary fiber a day, which is half the recommended amount.

High fiber foods

Here are some fiber-rich foods along with their fiber content:

  • Raspberries (8 grams in 1 cup)
  • One apple (4 grams)
  • One banana (3 grams)
  • Boiled broccoli (5 grams in 1 cup, chopped)
  • Boiled black beans (15 grams in 1 cup)
  • Whole wheat spaghetti (6 grams in 1 cup)
  • Whole-wheat bread (2 grams in 1 slice)
  • Almonds (3.5 grams in 1 ounce)
  • Brown rice (3 grams in 1 cup)
  • Cooked oats (4 grams in 1 cup)
  • Walnuts (8 grams in 1 cup)
  • Soybeans (17 grams in 1 cup)

Some more foods that contain fiber include:

  • Prunes contain both types of fiber and sorbitol that acts as a natural laxative. Eating three prunes a day can improve mild constipation.
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrots
  • Eggplant
  • Green peas
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Beets
  • Collard greens

Drink adequate fluids

You should drink an adequate quantity of water and other liquids, such as natural fruit and vegetable juices and clear soups. This helps the fiber clear your alimentary tract better. Adequate intake of fluids makes your stools softer and easier to pass.

Drinking enough water and other liquids is also a good way to avoid dehydration. Staying well-hydrated is good for your general health. It prevents dehydration and constipation. It benefits your overall health in many ways.

There’s no fixed number about how much fluid you should take in every day. Drinking between 10 and 12 glasses of water by adults each day can help your constipation and even prevent it.

Exercise regularly: Best exercises for constipation

Besides eating the right foods for constipation, you have to add some healthy habits to your lifestyle.

A sedentary lifestyle with little or no activity can make you constipated. Regular exercise activates your gut, strengthens the abdominal wall and diaphragm muscles, and helps cure constipation. Besides exercise is a miracle drug. Its benefits on the body are tremendous.

Try to get 150 minutes of mild exercise like walking, biking, or swimming every week. Have an exercise plan to roll out every day.

The following exercises especially will help:

Walking

Regular aerobic exercises positively improve your constipation. A 2017 study showed that people who walked on a treadmill thrice a week for 60 minutes showed vast improvement in their constipation symptoms.

Another study in 2019 showed that regular aerobic exercises like brisk walking can help increase intestinal Bacteroides, which is a vital part of healthy gut bacteria.

Though recommendations vary, studies have shown that engaging in 20 minutes of brisk walking every day has a positive effect on constipation.

Core exercises

The core muscles, including the abdominals and obliques, play a key role in gastrointestinal motility. When the core muscles contract, it increases the abdominal pressure, which helps to push intestinal contents forward.

Exercises such as bending and twisting the upper body increase pressure on the intestines as well.

Add core work into your exercise plan at least three times per week. The plank exercise, especially, works the entire core muscles and the abdominal muscles that run from the pelvis along the spine and up to the shoulder. This increases intra-abdominal pressure due to muscle contraction and stimulates intestinal motility.

Yoga

Some yoga postures can stimulate the digestive tract and thereby relieve constipation by stimulating the digestive tract to pass stool and gas.

Poses that twist the trunk, in particular, can help the intestinal contents move better through the digestive system.

Twisting poses, inversions, and forward folds work your digestive organs and increase blood and oxygen delivery to the abdominal organs.

This stimulates peristalsis, which encourages stools to move forward through your digestive, A regular yoga program can make your bowel movements regular.

Medical News Today gives some of the best yoga poses for constipation.

What should I avoid eating or drinking when I’m constipated?

Besides knowing the rights foods for constipation, you should know what foods are bad.

Avoid the following foods and beverages because they can cause constipation or make an existing condition worse

  • Avoid alcohol. It dehydrates you and will make your constipation worse.
  • Limit caffeinated drinks like tea and coffee as they can cause dehydration if you drink too much. Go for herbal tea instead.
  • Totally avoid the following when you are constipated
      • Chips
      • meat
      • fast food
      • frozen meals and snack foods
      • processed foods, such as hot dogs
  • Fried Food
  • Eggs
  • Tender Meat
  • White Bread