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Guide to Relieving Constipation   ( Home | Diet | Foods | Recipes )

The Best Anti-Constipation Foods (Cont'd)

Eat these anti-constipation foods, and your bowel will thank you! Thanks to their mild laxative properties and high concentration of soluble fiber, these constipation relieving foods are a must-try for anyone suffering from irregular and hard bowel movements.

Note that this is the second page of a two-page article on anti-constipation foods. If you missed the first page of the article, click here.

Several studies validate the use of flaxseeds for constipation relief.

#9:  Flaxseeds

These little seeds with a pleasant nutty flavor are highly effective at easing constipation and bloating. One study found that healthy adults who incorporated flaxseed into their diet experienced an increase of about 30% in bowel movements after the four-week trial period. This finding is supported by another study with patients who suffered from irritable bowel syndrome (characterized by constipation): after a three-month period, those patients who had ingested flaxseed experienced a significant reduction in constipation, bloating, and pain. To reap most of flaxseeds' benefits, grind them before adding them to your food (electric coffee grinders are great for grinding flaxseeds).

#10:  Rosehips

In traditional folk medicine, rosehips have been used as an anti-constipation food due to their mild laxative effects. Rosehips, which have a tangy taste similar to cranberries, can be eaten fresh or used in jams and pies. In some countries, like Sweden, they are also used in soups and stews. Keep in mind, though, that before you can consume rosehips the outer fleshy part of each orb must be removed because of the fine hairs they contain.

Oatmeal is rich in soluble fiber.

#11:  Oatmeal

Eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast is a great way to start a day off right — and prevent constipation. Oats are highly nutritious and an excellent source of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber forms a gel when mixed with water while insoluble fiber, which does not dissolve in water, passes the intestines largely intact. Soluble fiber is known to prevent constipation due to its ability to make stool bulkier and softer. Before consuming oats, it is advisable to soak them for several hours. Untreated oats, like other grains, contain phytic acid which can hinder the absorption of magnesium (an important constipation fighting mineral) in the intestines.

#12:  Celery

Celery, which is a mild natural laxative, has a long history as an effective anti-constipation food. When buying celery, opt for organically grown produce whenever possible — together with bell peppers celery tops the list of vegetables that contain the highest levels of contaminants, including neurotoxic pesticides and the potentially carcinogenic substance chlorothalonil.

#13:  Cultured Natural Yoghurt

Cultured natural yoghurt typically contains Lactobacillus acidophilus and/or Bifidobacterium bifidum (or L. acidophilus and bifidum, for short). These probiotic bacteria live in the gastrointestinal tract where they aid digestion and fight the overgrowth of harmful bacteria. Naturopaths often recommend probiotic yoghurt to people with constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-C), a common digestive syndrome characterized by constipation as well as bloating and abdominal pain and cramping. One study conducted in the UK found that women with IBS-C could reduce the distention of the stomach by up to 78% and significantly improve gastrointestinal transit time by just eating probiotic yoghurt.

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