Constipation Blues

Fleur D By Fleur D, 16th Apr 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Diet & Nutrition

Foods that help prevent constipation and foods that cause it.

Constipation Blues

Constipation Blues: Foods That Help and Hurt

When bowel movements occur less often or become harder to pass. Some times the movements are painful and some times it takes a while.

According to, Constipation “affects approximately 2% of the population in the U.S.” Its target are mostly elderly and women. Bowel movements vary among each person. The rule of thumb according to WedMD states “going longer than three days without a bowel movement is too long. After three days, the stool or feces become harder and more difficult to pass.”
According to the MayoClinic, if “ you are experienceing constipation if you pass fewer than three stools a week and your stools are hard and dry.”

Criteria for Constipation : if you have 2 or more of the following for at least 3 months:
25% of time you are straining during a bowel movement
25% of the time stools are hard
Fewer than 2 movements in a week

Common causes :
Not enough water intake.Doctors recommend 8-10 glasses daily
Inadequate fiber in the diet.

Daily Recommended Fiber Intake for
25 grams per day, for women younger than 50
21 grams per day, for women older than 50

38 grams per day, for men younger than 50
30 grams per day, for men older than 50

Change in routine / diet due to traveling
Consuming too much dairy products in diet
Too busy to take a bowel movement can result of pain from hemorrhoids.
Inappropriate use of laxatives/stool softeners can weaken bowel muscles.
Neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis or Parkinson’s Disease
Antacid medicines containing calcium or aluminum.
Medicines (especially strong pain medicines, such as narcotics,antidepressants, or iron pills).
Eating disorders.
Pregnancy ( i.e. after a c-section surgery)
Irritable bowel syndrome
colon cancer

Source :

Foods that cause constipation are foods that are low in fiber and high in fat such as ice cream, cheese, meat, snacks like chips and pizza, and processed foods, such as instant mashed potatoes or frozen dinners.

Eating foods that are high in fiber can help treat constipation. Ideas for high-fiber foods can be found in the table below.

Breads, Cereals, and Beans
Tangerines Acorn squash, raw
Broccoli, raw
Brussels sprouts, raw
Cabbage, raw
Carrots, raw
Cauliflower, raw
Spinach, cooked
Zucchini, raw Black-eyed peas, cooked
Kidney beans, cooked
Lima beans, cooked
Whole-grain cereal, cold (All-Bran, Total, Bran Flakes)
Whole-grain cereal, hot (oatmeal, Wheatena)


So if you want to keep it flowing, it’s all about the diet. Keep eating foods high in fiber.


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author avatar Fleur D
Domestic engineer, mother, wife, writer, aspiring novelist, over 7 years of experience in education/training, and I enjoy writing online.

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author avatar Songbird B
16th Apr 2011 (#)

An interesting article, with well supported advice. Great share on a subject rarely discussed openly...

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author avatar Vandana
19th Apr 2011 (#)

This is an interesting article, Thak you for this article

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