7 Mistakes that Make Constipation Worse

Constipation is uncomfortable and sometimes even painful, and chances are you know a few natural remedies for constipation. However, the remedies may not offer relief if you make these mistakes that worsen constipation.

Note that your constipation may persist even when you don’t make these mistakes. Sometimes constipation is a sign of serious health conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or diverticulosis. See a doctor if it lasts longer than two weeks.

With that said, you must avoid the mistakes below to ease constipation fast.

1. Eating Processed Foods

Your constipation may turn into a nightmare if you eat processed foods. Crackers, pasta, and bread slow down digestion, which worsens constipation.

Additionally, processed foods often contain fructans, which can interfere with the natural digestive process.

Most processed foods are also high in sodium, which may reduce your bathroom trips by lowering the water content in the stool.

2. Staying Inactive

Staying inactive because of constipation is a huge blunder. I understand that severe constipation can make it uncomfortable to move, but you should push yourself.

Exercise helps your digestive system function optimally. You don’t have to do long and intense workouts. Even short walks or home workouts are helpful.

3. Taking Calcium or Iron Supplements

You’re better off getting your calcium and iron from food when you’re constipated. These minerals interfere with the contraction of your gastrointestinal system.

In fact, getting these minerals from vegan sources will also offer plenty of fiber, which eases constipation. Go for these excellent calcium vegan sources and iron sources.

4. Overusing Laxatives

Laxatives may seem like a brilliant solution to your constipation, but using them too often can have the opposite effect. Relying on them for bowel movements all the time can worsen constipation.

Use laxatives sparingly. It’s better to use proven methods of relieving constipation such as drinking plenty of water and increasing your fiber intake.

woman holding a chocolate bar

5. Eating Chocolate

Eating a few chocolate bars won’t fix your discomfort. In fact, it may worsen it. Many people with constipation and IBS say chocolate triggers their symptoms, according to research.

Researchers are not sure why this is so, but ingredients such as milk and caffeine may be to blame.

6. Consuming Too Much Dairy

You probably know that a diet high in dairy can cause constipation by slowing down your digestion. Don’t eat cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products when you’re constipated.

Also avoid other animal, foods such as eggs and meat, and opt for fiber-rich fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains instead.

If you absolutely can’t do without dairy products, go for lactose-free alternatives.

7. Taking Certain Prescription Medications  

Most blood pressure medications can worsen your constipation, because they’re diuretics. They flush water out of your body, making it difficult to keep stool soft. Using antacids to fight heartburn can also worsen constipation, especially if they contain aluminum and calcium. Antidepressants can be problematic, too.

If you think your medication is causing constipation, talk to your doctor about whether you can make any adjustments.

It’ll be incredibly easy for you to beat constipation if you avoid these mistakes and take advantage of the natural remedies for constipation.

Photos via Getty Images

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