Seven Recommendations If You Have Constipation

Constipation is a common problem. It is also important to understand that by following a proper lifestyle, eating habit, it is possible to get rid of constipation easily. One needs to follow certain recommendations from experts to avoid constipation and lead a healthy trouble-free life. Here are the recommendations for adults with constipation. The recommendations for children with constipation are different.

Recommendation 1: Before dietary changes are done or any laxative is taken (by individuals with constipation), it is important to increase fluid intake to at least 1500 ml per day. Fluid means drinking water, non-alcoholic beverages; fruit juice etc. and do not include water content present in all foods. The target of fluid intake is 30 ml/kg of body weight. If you have constipation, it may be an indication that you are dehydrated, hence; you need to increase fluid intake, because correction of dehydration should be done before staring to increase dietary fiber intake or starting a laxative. Many individuals with different medical disorders may suffer from dehydration, for example, individuals with urinary incontinence deliberately reduce fluid intake and people with dysphagia (difficulty or pain during swallowing). Address the medical disorder, which may be responsible for dehydration before starting to treat constipation.

  • Recommendation 2: Increase in fiber intake (by diet of by taking fiber supplements as medication) should be accompanied by proportionate increase in fluid intake, with a minimum of 1500 ml per day. It is also important to remain hydrated throughout the day by taking/drinking water/liquid at regular interval.
  • Recommendation 3: Daily dietary fiber intake should be 30-40 grams (approximately 35 grams). Fiber intake should never be less than 25 grams. There is no upper limit for fiber intake, which is individualized, due to bulk, it is not possible to eat to much fiber.
  • Recommendation 4: Dietary fiber should come from variety of food types. Get variety of fibers from different food types such as cellulose and lignins (from vegetables, wheat bran, psyllium) and pectins, gums and resistant starch (from legumes, fruits). Take combination of soluble and insoluble fibers.
  • Recommendation 5: Increase of dietary fiber intake should be gradual and with a long-term aim, to be continued for life for remaining trouble-free from constipation. Because, sudden increase in fiber intake may result in bloating, flatulence, cramping and even diarrhea. It may take 2-4 weeks for complete dietary changes for a higher fiber intake dietary regimen.
  • Recommendation 6: Eat medium size meals at regular interval, which send signal to the large bowel that food is present in stomach and help in gut motility.
  • Recommendation 7: Probiotics and prebiotics may be helpful in constipation.


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