You feel a sudden pressure down below. So, you head quickly to the toilet, sit, push, and…nothing.
If you’ve noticed that you struggle to poop or you’re constipating, here are some tips to help you make yourself poop again.
A Glass of Hot Milk
Milk and other dairy products are often thought to be common causes for constipation. While some kids may develop constipation because they are unable to tolerate the protein in dairy foods, others consume milk on a daily basis to manage constipation.
India, for example, is a country known for its love affair with milk. Indians believe that milk is a magic potion that can cure about anything and indeed, according to Dr. Vasant Lad, drinking a cup of hot milk can help you work through your poop probs. He further stated that taking 1 or 2 teaspoonfuls of ghee in a cup of hot milk can soothe the digestive process and enable smooth bowel movements.
In another study, researchers found that drinking soy milk can get things flowing again fast.
A Nice Cup of Coffee
While coffee is a great energy booster, it can also stimulate the urge to poop. Though the correlation between bowels and coffee remains unclear to many, caffeine can make you poop and coffee has a lot of it.
Luckily, Poop Doctor (Dr. Sameer Islam, a Texan-based gastroenterologist) was able to break down the science of how a cup of Joe can get things moving. According to his analysis, coffee initiates something called the “gastrocolic reflex.” As soon as you gulp down the coffee, your stomach “wakes up” and starts to contract. This contraction follows all the way down to the small intestine and the colon to push things through.
In the same article, Dr.Sameer discussed the possibility of the acidity of coffee being the cause of stimulating your bowels. Both caffeinated and decaf coffee contains chlorogenic acid, which can increase the levels of acid in your stomach. This high production of gastric acid can then make your stomach to move its contents out faster than usual.
But, again, it’s still not clear as to how can a cup of Joe be responsible for that kind of “boost.”
Increase Your Water Intake
When your body doesn’t get enough water, the large intestine will soak up water from your food waste to maintain hydration. This will then make you suffer from constipation.
Even if you are not a water person, drinking water is important if you don’t want to have hard stools. When you drink enough water and are adequately hydrated, the water will keep things moving smoothly through your gastrointestinal tract and will prevent constipation. Ideally, it is said that to maintain good levels of hydration, one should drink six to eight glasses of water per day.
Eat More Fiber-Rich Foods
A high-fiber diet can not only help you achieve a healthy weight, but it can also normalize bowel movements. Most fiber-containing foods are good sources of vitamins and minerals, which is just perfect for maintaining bowel movements.
Yes, the commercials were right: Increasing your fiber intake can “keep you regular.” The soluble variety will absorb water and form a gel-like substance. This will give your stool a good consistency and help it to pass smoothly through your bowels.
So, here are some good sources of fiber:
- Dried fruits
- Chia seeds
- Artichoke hearts
- Dark chocolate
Get a Little Exercise
Does exercising help you poop? For the most part, yes!
According to experts, if you have constipation, regular participation in sports or physical activities like hiking, biking, jogging, walking on uneven grounds can increase your metabolism and consequently increase intestinal mobility.
Try a Perineal Massage
Excuse me, what?
Although it might be hard to believe, a 2015 study found that individuals who had a perineal massage reported better bowel function and less constipation.