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Constipation can pose a big obstacle in our day to day functioning. It can also be a sign of underlying diseases. If you are suffering from constipation, you may be wondering if there are laxatives that you could try to resolve the issue. In this article, we will take a look at the various options of laxatives that you consider to get relief from constipation.
What is laxative?
Laxatives are substances which aid in the smooth movement of bowels. Certain fruits, vegetables, and other food items have a laxative effect. Laxatives can be also produced chemically. But you should be cautious while consuming laxatives. An excess amount of laxatives or frequent consumption of chemical laxatives can have side effects.
Types of laxatives:
There are four broad categories of laxatives-
- Stimulant laxatives: this speeds up the movement of bowels in the digestive tract.
- Stool softener laxatives: this makes the stools soft by increasing water absorption.
- Bulk-forming laxatives: these function in the same manner as dietary fiber does. It helps in bulking up the waste products in the body and aids in the passage of bowels.
- Osmotic laxatives: these are similar to stool softener laxatives. The primary function is to increase the water absorption in the stool to ease the passage of bowels.
How to decide which laxative is the best for you?
If this does not help you, then consider trying an osmotic laxative. If you still do not receive the desired effects, you can supplement the bulk-forming laxative with a stimulant laxative. You can also consider speaking to your doctor before you decide the kind of laxative that you wish to consume.
12 Amazing Natural Options as Laxatives for Constipation
Instead of loading your body with a host of chemical laxatives, consider natural remedies to get relief from constipation.
These home remedies can take more time to produce the desired results but it is always better to consume natural products instead of loading up your body with a lot of chemicals
1. Leafy green vegetables:
The fiber content of green leafy vegetables is very high. These veggies are also loaded with magnesium and other nutrients which are helpful in maintaining good gut health. Sufficient intake of leafy vegetables will ensure proper contraction of muscles in the abdominal region and help you poop better.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away goes the age-old saying. It is one of the safest natural laxatives that you can consume if you are suffering from chronic constipation. Make sure that you always consume apples with its skin because that is the major source of fiber for your body. The presence of pectin in apples helps to bulk up the stool and makes the passage of stools much easier.
3. Olive oil:
The fat content of olive oil is helpful in curing chronic constipation. But make sure that you do not consume it in excess as that can lead to diarrhea.
Similar to olive oil, the fat content of flax seeds help in giving relief from constipation. Flaxseeds are also a great source of fiber and therefore consumption of flaxseeds help in getting relief from constipation.
5. Chia seeds:
Another fiber-rich food product that can provide you relief from constipation is chia seeds. Chia seeds are very rich in insoluble fiber which eases the movement of stools. However, the consumption of chia seeds in excess can lead to a leaky gut.
6. Castor oil:
One of the oldest natural laxatives that have been around been castor oil. One tablespoon of castor oil will be enough to provide you instant relief from constipation. Castor oil acts as a stimulant which helps in the smooth contraction of the gut. The presence of ricinoleic acid in castor oil is helpful in lubricating the intestinal walls. This help in the passage of the stools.
Prunes are excellent colon cleansers. Consuming prunes is a safe way to get relief from constipation. The presence of high amounts of sorbitol makes prunes an ideal candidate when it comes to difficulty in passing stools.
Soak two dates overnight in a glass of water. Mash the dates in the morning and consume the pulp. This will provide you instant relief from constipation.
Consuming bran is also a great idea to get relief from constipation. If you consume wheat-based products, make sure to add a few tablespoons of bran to the mixture. You can also mix bran with your morning porridge.
10. Psyllium husk:
Another natural remedy to consider for constipation is psyllium husk. The best way to consume this is to mix a few teaspoons with warm water and consuming the mixture before bed. The fiber content in it helps in bulking up the stools.
Lemon has several nutritional benefits associated with it. Consider consuming the juice of half a lemon mixed with warm water every morning on an empty stomach. This will kick start your bowel movement and give you relief from constipation.
This can be an excellent home remedy for constipation when consumed in the right manner. You can consider mixing honey with warm water and consuming the solution every morning.
When all remedies to cure constipation have failed
It is important to understand the underlying cause of your constipation. Sometimes, constipation can signal the presence of an underlying disease or also be due to side effects caused by any particular medication. If you have tried all remedies, both natural and over-the-counter without any relief, seek medical advice at the earliest. As part of good bowel hygiene, ensure that you consume plenty of fluids in a day to keep your body hydrated.
When you have the urge to relieve yourself, do not hold it back. Once you are in the bathroom, try not to rush through the process. Give yourself time and stop getting anxious. Anxiety can also lead to constipation. Make sure that you do not consume too much alcohol or caffeine through the day as these can also lead to constipation. A lot of people consider smoking cigarette to be a bowel stimulant but that is far from the truth. You can also consider natural herbs for getting relief from constipation.
Don’t consume too many products
However, consuming too many products in the hope that you will get faster relief is a foolish decision. Make sure that you are aware of the interactions of the various products you consume. If you wish to cure your constipation through naturopathy, keep your doctor informed of the same. It is best to avoid consumption of artificial laxatives on a daily basis to ensure that you don’t get addicted to them. Being physically active also helps in a smooth movement of bowels. A brisk walk of 30 minutes is all you need to stay physically active. You can also consider working out in the morning before you visit the restroom as the exercise stimulates the muscles in the gut region.
Consumption of probiotics is also recommended as it helps in maintaining healthy bacteria in your gut which is essential for good gut health. Ensure that you consume plenty of yogurt, kefir and miso soup which are natural probiotics. Above all, try to lead a stress-free life and enjoy your peace of mind.