Home Remedies to Relieve Constipation
“Potty problems” are something we avoid in our everyday conversations. While you may be more than willing to share how much your sore throat is torturing you, rarely do you go into the office and announce that you haven’t pooped in five days. However, constipation is not something to be embarrassed about, and if you’ve had it (and we all have) than you understand that it is no laughing matter-in fact it can be downright debilitating. Before running to the drugstore for a quick-fix laxative (which often worsen the problem) try some simple home remedies to relieve your discomfort, and keep it from coming back.
1. Oil…it gets more than cars running
Pure olive oil is more than just a healthy and tasty fat, it can also help relieve constipation. It’s not surprising really when you consider what olive oil’s texture and consistency is like- it’s practically the poster child for constipation home remedies. It stimulates your digestive system, which helps get things moving through your colon, and taken regularly it can prevent constipation as well.
You will need…
-1 tablespoon of olive oil
-1 teaspoon of lemon juice (optional)
In the morning consume one tablespoon of olive oil. It works best on an empty stomach, so have it before you eat anything else. If you forget, wait until later when you haven’t eaten for a while. You can mix it with a little bit of lemon juice if you like to lighten the flavor (lemon juice also acts as a natural aid for constipation.)
2. Freshen up from the inside out
Ah the scent of a fresh lemon…did you ever think your stomach might appreciate it as much as your nose? The citric acid in lemon juice acts as a stimulant for your digestive system, and can also help flush out toxins and undigested material that may have built up along the walls of the colon. Mixing the juice with water not only lessens the intensity of the lemon flavor, but helps get you the fluids you need to get everything moving normally again.
You will need…
-1 fresh lemon
-1 cup of warm water
Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon into 1 cup of warm water. Drink or sip until finished completely.
3. Molasses makes the world go ‘round
Blackstrap molasses has been a sweet savior for more than a few sufferers of constipation, be it chronic or occasional. The reason blackstrap molasses works so well is because of how it is made. Regular molasses is essentially pure cane sugar juice boiled to concentrate and crystallize the sugar. The third boiling results in blackstrap molasses, which is crystallized but contains significant amounts of vitamins and minerals, specifically magnesium, which is what helps the constipation. It’s natural, tasty, and while you thank goodness someone decided to repeatedly boil a bunch of sugar, your body will thank you for the natural remedy.
You will need…
-1 teaspoon of blackstrap molasses
-warm water or tea (optional)
Consume one teaspoon of blackstrap molasses. Start slow and small here-if you don’t like the flavor of molasses, you can add it to a cup of warm water or tea to dilute the taste. If you find that a teaspoon has not been effective, you can go as high as 1-2 tablespoons, but try less at first.
4. Coffee is our friend (sometimes)
A lot of people love their morning coffee, but it does more than just give off heavenly aromas and help you perk up. Caffeine is a natural stimulant for the digestive system, so indulging in a cup of joe will help get you up and running in more ways than one. 1-2 cups is fine, but make sure you don’t overdo it-too much can actually have the opposite effect. Coffee is a diuretic and makes you urinate more frequently, and if you drink it an excess, it can cause constipation by dehydrating your body and drawing out water that would normally soften your stool.
5. Get moving
If you want stuff to move through your body, you need to move too! Our lifestyle these days not only involves dietary changes that increase constipation, but we’re often sitting much more than we’re active. While there isn’t an exact scientific reason as to why lack of exercise is linked with getting clogged up, we can assume that moving the body helps get the smooth muscle in the colon moving as well. Keep in mind, however, that you should wait an hour after big meals before exercising. There are also specific stretches and workouts that are supposed to help with getting good old number 2 out the door.