Foods to Help You Have Regular Bowel Movements

We’ve all been there— bloated, gassy, and irritable. Straining to get our bowels moving. Even if you only suffer from occasional constipation, the discomfort is real. Unfortunately, our society typically turns to over-the-counter laxatives to treat constipation instead of addressing the underlying issues— including our diets.

You have probably heard us talk about how the foods we eat affect so many aspects of our health (skin included!). Constipation is no different. While many things contribute to constipation, such as dehydration, eating a low fiber diet, some medications, anxiety and emotional stress, adding good foods into your regular diet can help keep your bowel movements regular. It’s time to take control of your digestion and give your tummy the comfort it deserves by learning what foods can harm and what foods can heal your gut.

Magnesium plays a key role in keeping your digestive system happy (and your skin healthy, so double the good!). Because magnesium helps maintain proper muscle function, it’s necessary to keep your intestinal muscles moving. Taking supplements and eating foods high in magnesium, such as green, leafy vegetables, can significantly impact your digestion.

Foods rich in fiber are also crucial to regular bowel movements. The list of high fiber foods is expansive and includes fruits, raw vegetables, nuts and unprocessed grains. Vegetables such as sweet potatoes and squash, fruits such as berries and prunes, and all the beans and legumes are especially great for your gut! These foods play a vital role in the regulation of your digestion, because their fiber content increases the movement of food waste through your intestines.

Hydration is another key factor in healthy bowel movements. When eating foods with a lot of fiber, hydration is particularly important, as your body needs these liquids to keep your stool soft and push the fiber through your system. Drinking clear liquids like water and herbal teas is a great way to stay hydrated and prevent constipation.

Just like how a healthy diet contributes to the wellbeing of your digestive tract, a poor diet can clog your system and slow down digestion. Food high in trans fats (such as fried foods) as well as overly processed foods (such as fast foods, refined flour and sugars), and low quality, pasteurized dairy encourage constipation. And dehydrating drinks like alcohol and caffeine may contribute to long-term constipation. R

When bowel movements occur, it’s important to keep your bum clean and healthy afterward. We mentioned our partnership with Tushy in our monthly newsletter, but wanted to share a little more about this fun site.

Tushy is an online company that provides easy-to- use bidet attachments to your toilet seat, for a cleaner bathroom experience. Using dry toilet paper after a bowel movement can have adverse effects on both our bodies and our environment. Did you know that dry toilet paper can actually promote infections such as UTIs and hemorrhoids? And it’s environmentally unsustainable. Toilet paper production kills over 15 million trees and uses over 400 billion gallons of water each year, not to mention the water it takes to keep our sewage systems functioning with all of the toilet paper usage!

Beyond providing a solution to keeping your bum clean, Tushy is also dedicated to improving sanitation in developing countries. With every bidet purchase, Tushy provides families in rural India access to clean toilets. Interested? Use our special code EATUSHY at checkout for 10% off of your purchase the entire month of March!

Posted in: Elizabeth Adams MD, Food Wisdom, Healthy Foods, Hydration

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.