Constipation is characterised by less frequent bowel movements or an inability to defecate. Constipated adults, on average, have fewer than three bowel movements per week, though this number can vary from person to person. Constipation is unpleasant and can cause health problems. Many foods, including probiotics, whole grains, legumes, and high-fiber fruits, can help relieve and prevent constipation.
Expert nutritionist Lovneet Batra suggests some simple at-home treatments for easing constipation. “Constipation is one of the most common gut health issues that can be addressed only by fixing your lifestyle,” she explains in one of her Instagram videos. A few helpful combinations for relieving constipation are shared:
1. Yogurt + ground flax seeds
The probiotic bacteria in yoghurt, Bifidobacterium lactis, and the soluble fibre in flaxseeds work together to keep your digestive system running smoothly. Softer, more manageable stools are the result of soluble fibre, which dissolves in water.
2. Juice made from amla berries
Amla juice, when taken in a morning dose of 30 ml with a glass of water, is known to improve digestion and relieve constipation.
3. Gluten-free oats
High levels of soluble and insoluble fibre in oat bran have been linked to a reduction in constipation and improved bowel health.
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4. Butter (ghee) and milk
Ghee’s high butyric acid content makes it a useful laxative and promotes healthy bowel function. The next morning you won’t feel as constipated if you take 1 teaspoon of ghee in a cup of hot milk before bed.
5. Vegetable greens
Leafy green vegetables like spinach, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli are not only high in fibre but also folate and vitamins C and K. These leafy greens are great for increasing the density and weight of faeces, making them much less difficult to pass through the digestive tract.
Constipation may be relieved by drinking more water, especially if you also eat more fibre.