Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Constipation


Sorry for the rather blunt title.

In fact, this post is going to be rather blunt. Definitely feel free to excuse yourself now, if you don't want to hear a candid discussion of my bowel movements (I don't blame you!).

I need to figure out a way to get my bowel movements back on track. A while ago, I was going Number Two (well, I figured I might as well throw in a euphemism) every single morning before work. Like clockwork. And that felt really right for my body.

But now I'm much more inconsistent, and I'm thinking it's because I changed my breakfast routine. I used to eat Organic 4 Grain Plus Flax Hot Cereal with chopped apples, raw pumpkin seeds, and dried cherries and cranberries. Just the hot cereal alone provided 36 percent of my daily recommended servings of fiber.

But because I was trying to cram more protein into every meal (and because I was getting sick of eating the same thing every morning) I switched to plain yogurt blended with frozen fruit into a smoothie. And now I'm irregular (even though I eat four prunes a day). Hmm....

After some googling, here are the next steps I came up with:

  • Go back to my hot cereal breakfast and try to add more protein into my snacks throughout the day (like a hard-boiled egg, for example)
  • Beef up on my fruit intake (breakfast, snacks, lunch, and after-dinner snack)--focusing on fiber-rich fruit like pears, apricots, strawberries, apples, dried prunes or dates, peaches, or pineapple
  • Eat more cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage
  • Drink plenty of water!

Through my few minutes of research, I learned that "fiber" makes us more regular by roughing up the cells that line our intestines. As the body tries to repair the damage, it secretes more mucous, which provides the lubrication necessary to keep us regular. Sounds awful, but the experts agree it's good for us. I also read this interesting article about the ideal color, shape, size, and frequency of our poop.



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9 comments:

Urban Environmentalist said...

Plain old oatmeal works well. You could also try drinking a warm beverage in the morning which is really supposed to get your bowels moving. Coffee/Tea/ or even warm water.

Tracy said...

I just add fiber cereal to my greek yogurt. Oh, and coffee every day.

Anonymous said...

As far as cereals go Kashi Go Lean Crunch has a decent amount of protien and really helps me stay regular.

Anonymous said...

I would say go back to eating fiber-rich cereal, just change it up. Look for Uncle Sam cereal, it's a staple at our house. It has crazy high fiber and crazy low sugar. And all of the Kashi cereals are tasty and fiberlicious. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I think I remember you also saying that you recently cut out caffeine, right? Caffeine can stimulate your bowels and make you go. Since you probably drank your coffee or tea in the morning and you always used to go in the morning before, there could be a correlation there.

Anonymous said...

I find there's a serious correlation between caffeine and when and how I go.

jillybean said...

Add milled flaxseed to smoothies, yogurt, and oatmeal for a very "smooth" response and great Omega 3's.

Biz said...

ok, who knew that this was such a big thing for women over the age of 25? 7 comments on constipation? plus anytime I'm in the vicinity of a TV an activia commercial comes on.
i'd never had problems going but NOW... why doesn't somebody tell you this stuff?

Elizabeth said...

Steel cut oats make all the difference for me!

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