Many factors can contribute to constipation. It's uncomfortable to experience it, let alone speak about it! Your body will often show physical signs of discomfort including bloating, stomach pain, lower back pain, and sometimes even headaches. If you're having less than 3 bowel movements per week, your body is trying to tell you something, and it's your job to listen to it.
Regular bowel movements depend on many things including regular exercise, nutrition, hydration, and more. A lack of bowel movement can be due to many factors including a change in routine, travelling, and stress. When you are struggling with 'getting things moving,' it's best to try and help your body in the most natural way possible. Laxatives are packed with chemicals and can often do more harm than good. These are some natural home remedies that can help.
Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is a powerful natural method for easing constipation, and lack of it can often be the cause. If you don't have enough fluids, your large intestine will soak up the water from your food waste, making your stools challenging to pass. Make a mental note at the beginning of each day to drink water! If you live in a hot climate, exercise or sweat regularly, your body will be using your stored water, so it's important to replenish more than usual. Although drinking more water will help soften your stools and make them easier to pass, it's not the cure for constipation. It's simply a preventative.
Eat More Fibre
You've probably heard that fibre helps with constipation, and what they say is true. Eating enough of it is essential to your gut health. In addition to warding off constipation, fibre helps promote healthy microbiota (the healthy group of bacterial lining in your digestive tract).
There are two types of fibre - soluble and insoluble.
Soluble fibre absorbs water and forms a jelly-like substance. It makes it easier for your stool to pass smoothly by helping improve its form and consistency. Excellent sources of soluble fibre include citrus, oats, carrots, barley and beans.
Insoluble fibre will bulk up your stool and sweep through your bowels to cleanse everything out. Sources of insoluble fibre include wheat bran, nuts, whole-wheat flour, potatoes, and cauliflower.
If you're not feeling regular, try and increase the amount of fibre in your diet!
Movement is integral to our health and wellbeing. Everybody is different and different types of exercise will work differently for each of us. Lucky for us, there are so many ways to enjoy movement! Walking, jogging, yoga, workouts and sports can help relieve constipation and stimulate bowel movements. Exercise stimulates the nervous system and helps the muscles and gut nerves to work better. It improves your digestive processes and increases muscle contractions in your colon. So, if you're feeling constipated, try and go for a walk!
Natural colon cleansing pills are one of the efficient and effective ways to achieve relief. The keyword here being natural! We're not talking about the generic laxatives that will leave you feeling dehydrated. If you rely on laxatives regularly, they can worsen your situation by decreasing your colon's ability to contract. Overnight Cleanse is a chemical-free colon cleansing pill that uses the power of magnesium, oxygen and aloe vera to reset your gut, making sure that your intestines are not stripped of all their good bacteria. Natural colon cleansing supplements are formulated to support healthy bowel function and gently clings to compacted stools and breaks them down in a way that makes them much easier to pass out of your body.
The warmth of tea can stimulate the digestive system and help you relieve your symptoms. Herbal teas such as peppermint, ginger, dandelion, and licorice root can all soothe your gastrointestinal system whilst relieving constipation- plus, they are gentle and relaxing! We all love a morning tea fix, but often we forget to follow up with water to remain hydrated! Try introducing the routine of having a glass of water after your morning tea.
Massage Your Abdomen
Everyone loves a soothing belly rub. If you massage your abdomen near your colon, you can decrease colonic transit time whilst relieving discomfort. This will help you stimulate muscle contractions and the temporary lack of movement of the intestines. Here is how to do it:
- Lie down on your back, and using both hands, gently put pressure on your abdomen
- Slowly make clockwise circles using a gentle yet firm pressure, starting at the right lower side
- Apply pressure to the inside of your hip bone on the right
- Apply pressure to the right side of your ribs (under the centre), then do the same on the left side
- Apply pressure to the inside of your hip bone on the left
- Push both hands into your abdomen, pulling in an upwards motion
This should help show symptom improvements and relieve a little discomfort for your unhappy tummy.
Drink Lemon Juice
Consuming lemon juice is a great way to flush out toxins and is a natural digestive aid. It's a refreshing drink, an excellent way to hydrate, and will help loosen the toxins floating around in your GI tract.
The benefits that come from lemon water come from using every part of the lemon! So don't just squeeze it into a glass of water- wash the lemon, cut it up into little slices, and pinch them before dropping them into your cup of water. They can be added to warm or cold water- both taste and feel great! If your choice is chilled lemon water, prepare a jug and pop it in the fridge for a few hours, so it's easily accessible.
Fennel is a natural laxative and will help relax the muscles in the intestines. The anethole in the fennel will help increase gastric enzymes, which will help move the stool along through the colon. There are many ways to consume it, including fennel tea, grinding fennel seeds and adding them to your cooking, adding them to your baked goods and supplements. Add fennel to your shopping list, and start experimenting with it in the kitchen- your guts will thank you later!
Honey is jam-packed with enzymes, antioxidants and can act as a mild laxative. It contains certain enzymes that act as a catalyst in the digestive process and can help cure bacterial infections in the stomach. It's an excellent substitute for a sweet treat and can be added to your tea, warm lemon water, on toast, or straight to the source through a tasty spoonful!
Your gut is a muscle, and it needs to move! If you are having issues with being regular, these are some of our home remedies to relieve constipation. We can't stress enough that going the natural way is the best way! These natural remedies for constipation relief may not be the cure, but they can certainly aid the process. If you are suffering severe constipation, are relying on laxatives or long-term issues, we advise that you seek medical assistance.