How do I Prevent Constipation?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Prunes can help with bowel movements.
Prunes can help with bowel movements.

Constipation is an uncomfortable condition in which an individual is temporarily unable to eliminate waste naturally. Bloating and pain in the abdomen are just two of the common symptoms associated with this condition. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to prevent constipation and never have to experience the pain and discomfort associated with this ailment.

Dietary fiber, like that found in beans, can help with constipation.
Dietary fiber, like that found in beans, can help with constipation.

Good nutrition is one of the most important factors in preventing constipation. Specifically, consuming foods that are high in fiber will help to add bulk to waste and allow it to move through the colon with greater ease. While some people choose to use some sort of supplement for fiber, you can get all you need by adding whole grains, fruits, and many vegetables to each of your meals.

Laxatives can help relieve constipation.
Laxatives can help relieve constipation.

You may also find that it is easier to prevent constipation if you minimize or eliminate certain foods from your diet. Eggs and cheese sometimes cause individuals to become constipated, if they are consumed in large amounts. Meat consumption can have a similar effect, although some people report that consuming large amounts of red meat may lead to diarrhea. In general, fresh and frozen foods are less likely to cause a problem than processed food products.

Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables helps to prevent constipation.
Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables helps to prevent constipation.

Along with eating the right foods, drinking the right liquids will also help to prevent constipation. Water by far is the best option when it comes to keeping your intestines capable of moving waste naturally. Keep in mind that not all liquids will help prevent constipation. In fact, excessive amounts of coffee, black and orange pekoe tea, and all types of sodas will actually dehydrate your body and make you more susceptible to developing constipation.

Consuming several glasses of water per day is a preventative measure against constipation.
Consuming several glasses of water per day is a preventative measure against constipation.

While many people are not aware of the fact, a sedentary lifestyle can actually promote the development of constipation. Choosing to be physically active does not mean spending hours in the gym each day. Taking a brisk walk or engaging in some light exercise for at least a half hour each day will help your system to function properly.

Many of the strategies used by adults to prevent constipation can also be employed with equal success with infants. Something as simple as switching formulas or feeding your child more pureed apples may be all it takes to prevent baby constipation and allow your newborn to be free of the pain associated with the condition. Generally, making a dietary change will produce the desired result in less than twenty-four hours.

Those who become constipated while maintaining a healthy diet should consult a doctor.
Those who become constipated while maintaining a healthy diet should consult a doctor.

Learning how to prevent constipation is not a difficult task. By keeping physically active, eating the right foods, and drinking the right liquids, you will greatly minimize your chances of ever having to deal this condition. Should you develop constipation in spite of eating and drinking properly, see a doctor. There may be an underlying physical condition that could be remedied with relative ease.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including , and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including , and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

Discussion Comments

pleonasm

@clintflint - Sometimes you just have to get someone to take a supplement. My stepfather just refuses to change his habits and his habits are to eat very bland, processed food as much as possible. But he drinks a fiber sachet mixed in water as a regular medicine and it seems to do the trick.

clintflint

@croydon - People should just eat the right food to prevent constipation in the first place. Even if you aren't fond of vegetables, there are other things you can eat that will provide more than enough. Oatmeal for example, even oatmeal cookies, can help, as can dried fruit like dates (which are essentially like eating candy).

Even if you are someone who likes to eat a lot of processed foods or meat, you can work out some way of including fiber. It won't do you as much good as a properly diverse diet, but it's better than not having any fiber.

Constipation might not be much fun, but lack of fiber can cause much worse problems, such as cancer. So this isn't just about preventing hemorrhoids, even though that should be enough of a goal.

croydon

The best thing you can do naturally to ease constipation if you've already got it is to drink a lot of water and hope that helps the issue. Try very hard not to go to the toilet until you feel like you can without straining, because straining will earn you hemorrhoids or worse and it's better to put up with being uncomfortable for a little while.

If drinking a lot of water doesn't help at all, then move onto the laxatives, but be careful about using them too often or too much. They can become addictive.

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    • Prunes can help with bowel movements.
      Prunes can help with bowel movements.
    • Dietary fiber, like that found in beans, can help with constipation.
      By: Marco Mayer
      Dietary fiber, like that found in beans, can help with constipation.
    • Laxatives can help relieve constipation.
      By: Lorenzo Buttitta
      Laxatives can help relieve constipation.
    • Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables helps to prevent constipation.
      By: Photographee.eu
      Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables helps to prevent constipation.
    • Consuming several glasses of water per day is a preventative measure against constipation.
      By: anyaivanova
      Consuming several glasses of water per day is a preventative measure against constipation.
    • Those who become constipated while maintaining a healthy diet should consult a doctor.
      By: rob3000
      Those who become constipated while maintaining a healthy diet should consult a doctor.
    • Occasional constipation is generally no cause for concern.
      By: Africa Studio
      Occasional constipation is generally no cause for concern.