One cannot deny experiencing constipation at least once in a lifetime. Having said that, the reasons behind it are common, and it can appear in different forms for different individuals. It is a problem in which stool passes very slowly through the large intestine. There’s another type in which the stool gets extremely dry and becomes hard to pass. Constipation is somewhat of a common issue that affects nearly 15 per cent of the global population. Chronic constipation can affect the quality of life of many people. However, the rise of this issue has also given birth to a myriad of myths.
Health Shots got in touch with nutritionist Avni Kaul to bust some of the myths about constipation. Here’s what she told us.
Myth 1: Your diet is always the culprit
Fact: You must be wondering if the real problem aggravating issues in bowel movement is your diet. But it’s not always the case. The expert avers, “There are other factors and things like certain medications used to curb the pain or depression that are often the real contributing factors.” So, before cutting out on foods that you think are causing constipation, do check out with your doctors to know which medications could be causing such issues.
Myth 2: All you need to ease constipation is fibre
Fact: Well, this is the most common myth. “Undoubtedly, less fibre consumption can be one of the reasons to cause constipation, but increasing your fibre intake while you have constipation is not going to work all the time,” says the expert.
There are two types of fibres — soluble and insoluble, and it is always the soluble one that has the bigger advantage. So, always go for the soluble ones to relieve constipation.
Myth 3: Probiotics will always do wonders
Fact: It goes without saying that probiotics are good for your gut because they assist to maintain a healthy microbiome. They do the magic to ease any IBS symptoms and to an extent can also help with constipation. But still, a lot of extensive studies are required to prove the utility of probiotics in easing constipation.
Myth 4: All you need is to drink more water
Fact: As per the expert, studies are yet to confirm that by only drinking water, your constipation problem will get resolved. Still, drinking plenty of water in everyday life is a healthy practice. But gobbling down litres of water alone, as said earlier, will probably not encourage bowel movement. Make sure that you also consume healthy foods along with drinking water and having fibre-rich food to reduce the likelihood of constipation.
Myth 5: Yogurt can treat constipation
Fact: Yogurt is known as a natural probiotic. So, probiotics in yogurt can help a lot to stimulate healthy bacteria in the gut. However, it cannot be concluded that yogurt can treat constipation. Still, it is recommended to incorporate a daily probiotic like yogurt in combination with other fibrous and healthy foods to avoid constipation. Curd and buttermilk are the most effective natural forms of probiotics that are readily available.