How healthy is your digestive tract? Unless it is functioning appropriately, you may not feel as well as you would like. Many readers have written to ask how to overcome constipation.
Can You Overcome Constipation Without Harsh Laxatives?
Q. I have been plagued with constipation and indigestion my whole life. A friend recommended magnesium, but that has given me diarrhea.
I do not want to take harsh laxatives or antacids. What natural options are there to overcome constipation?
A. Experts usually recommend adequate fluids and fiber to treat constipation naturally. If you eat five or more servings of vegetables and fruits every day you should be getting enough fiber, but some people will need more to stay regular.
Some antacids (especially those containing aluminum hydroxide) can actually cause constipation, so you’ll want to be careful about that. Other medications might also cause constipation as a side effect. You may want to discuss this with the prescriber or the pharmacist.
Treating Constipation Naturally:
One approach to overcome constipation is “Power Pudding” made of bran, prune juice and applesauce. You’ll find instructions for that and “dynamite” pumpkin bran muffins in our book, Recipes & Remedies, available at www.PeoplesPharmacy.com. It also contains information on remedies such as persimmon punch or ginger tea for indigestion.
Occasionally readers report on a simple tactic that works for them. Don’t forget that prunes are an age-old remedy for constipation. Other readers sip hot water with lemon juice right after they get up in the morning to get things moving.
You might want to reconsider the magnesium supplement you tried. At a lower dose, it might be helpful rather than simply cause diarrhea. Also, chewing sugar-free gum or candies can lead to diarrhea, but by carefully adjusting the dose you might find they are helpful in conquering constipation.