The C word is not one we use a lot in polite company. Blocked up, sore tummy, having problems with number 2 are all ways to say the C word (without saying the C word).
Everyone is different. Some people go once a day. Some people once every 3 days. But if you go longer than three days without any action, you probably are constipated.
So what causes constipation? Lots of things can. Not enough water, a diet low in fibre, hormones (yes many of use girls utter the C word when it is that time of the month) and some medications can cause it too (another reason why they call it a C-section?).
Stress or depression is also a contributing factor for some people and those of us that are even mildly lactose intolerant can get constipation if we have milk or milk products.
What can you do?
- Drink more water and try to make a habit of it.
- Eat more fruit and vegetables and other high fibre foods. Soluble fibre found in whole grains, beans and some fruit and vegetables is best for giving things a giddy up. And yes, your mum was right about the prunes, they pack a fibre punch and also contain a natural laxative.
- MOVE. Walking, running or any other exercise that gets your heart rate up is great to get those bowels working. Ever seen what a dog does about halfway through his daily walk? Enough said.
- These two exercises – check out this video for 2 easy seated exercises to get your bowels moving.
It is also interesting to note that as humans, our bodies are anatomically designed to eliminate in the squat position (a 35-degree angle). Although the western toilet is comfortable, it’s unnatural and not the way nature intended us to eliminate the stuff we don’t need in our tums and bums. Joys such as constipation and haemorrhoids are often the result of incorrect toilet posture so it is a good idea to elevate your feet while you are on the loo doing number two to mimic the natural squat position.
You can do this by using a specially designed toilet step stool like easyGoPro or Squatty Potty. A kids bathroom step also works fine or a couple of old phone books on the floor will also bring your knees up for easier elimination (you have to use them for something right?).
Do you have any other tips to add to the list that have worked for you? Please share in the comments below.
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