Constipation is a condition that every one must have experienced at some point of time. The pain and anxiety that such condition causes is always a cause of irritation. Sometimes this condition becomes chronic in many people. But the first thing that should be taken care of in such a condition is what food you are taking and the lifestyle you are following. Of the two, the more important is of course the food because in the end what goes in determines what comes out.
The Composition Of Diet
Constipation generally results from lack of fiber and fluid, the two main ingredients for clearing the intestines. The average requirement of fiber by a fully grown adult is around 25 to 30 grams every day. And the normal fluid intake of around 8 liters a day is required to make the passage of this fiber smooth. The fibers retain the fluid and that make bowel movement easier. So if you are suffering from regular bouts of constipation, try to include more fiber rich food into your diet.
The Fiber Rich Food To Add To Diet
Fiber Rich Cereal
Make sure you start your day with a good amount of fiber. So choose a cereal which is rich in fiber. A good amount is around 5 gm of fiber per serving.
Sometimes adding flaxseed or wheat bran to the cereal can enhance the fiber amount if the cereal does not have enough. Flaxseed is a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber and can help in regularization of bowel movement.
Whole Grain Bread
Refined flour has disastrous effect on those having chronic problem of constipation. So if you are still on it, switch to whole grain bread. In fact start using whole grain flour for all types of breads. They are very rich in dietary fiber. Not only will you benefit by getting relief from constipation, but you will also take in less amount of fat. Moreover such grains contain complex carbohydrates which release the required glucose slowly in the body.
Dried fruit contains a good amount of dietary fiber and that means making them part of the diet can give relief from constipation. So you can take figs, apricots, raisins, dates and prunes.Of all of these prunes are considered best when you are actually suffering from constipation because prunes contain the natural laxative sorbitol.
Beans are great sources of fiber. They contain almost twice the amount of fiber compared to most of the vegetables. Half a cup of Lima beans can provide almost 6 grams of dietary fiber; kidney beans can provide over 8 grams while navy beans can provide as much as 9.5 grams. The benefit of having beans is that you can prepare it in a variety of ways. So take it regularly if you are chronic patient of constipation.
Nuts can also provide good amount of fiber. The best among them are walnuts, Brazil nuts and peanuts. You can get almost 3 to 3.5 grams per one-ounce servings of the nuts.
Pecans and pistachios are also good sources with a dietary fiber content of just under 3 grams for every ounce of serving. But the downside of such nuts is that they are high in calorific content and they may not be safe for those having problems of obesity or other calorie dependant problems.
Take lots of vegetables in your daily diet. Do not overcook them as that may destroy the fiber content. The best way to take them is raw, blanched, steamed and baked. However, take caution when eating them raw as many germs may enter if not properly washed and cleaned. Vegetables, having cellulose, make good roughage and can help in bowel movement. The top performer among such vegetables is broccoli. It is not only rich in fibers but also in nutrients and at the same time it is very low in calories.
Fruits And Berries
Fruits, like vegetables, are also great sources of dietary fiber. Eating raw fruit daily helps in curing constipation to a large extent. The most effective fruits are pears, apples and plums. And the greatest source of fiber is the skin of these fruits. Fruits are also sources of another type of fiber called pectin.
Berries are often prescribed for regularizing the bowel movements in patients suffering from constipation. Strawberries, raspberries and blackberries are fruits which are all good sources of dietary fiber. Being low in calorie count, berries are the best natural solutions for constipation in people suffering from calorie related diseases.
Potatoes with skin on and popcorn are also good ways to get natural dietary fiber even while snacking.