Constipation shouldn’t be taboo.
Let’s be honest: poop happens (and sometimes it doesn’t). Nearly a quarter of Canadians are affected by constipation every year. Being constipated means that you have fewer than three bowel movements a week, or that your bowel movements are hard, dry and small, and are painful or difficult to pass. It can happen when the colon absorbs too much water or when its muscle contractions slow down.
Constipation affects many aspects of our lives.
Constipation can affect our bodies, our way of life, and even our skin. It can make you feel pain or bloating in your abdomen. And when you do go, it may hurt and you may only go a little—totally unsatisfying. When you’re constipated, you may want to spend all day in baggy clothes or stretchy yoga pants. It’s important to care for your body because when you feel good and healthy, you look good.
Summertime fun could have made you constipated.
The summer lifestyle can contribute to constipation because of changes to our routines. Warm weather and time off meant weekends away or long-distance travel. Not only were we on different wake-sleep schedules, our eating habits and diet changed. Maybe you were skipping your morning bowl of oatmeal, passing on your usual salad or indulging in unhealthy foods. You may have gone off your regular workout or spent a lot of time sitting in a car or airplane Travel may mean postponing going #2 because you didn’t have access to a toilet or you only wanted to go at home. (There’s nothing like squatting over a thunderbox or public toilet.) The problem is, if you ignore or delay the urge to go, over time, you may stop feeling the need to—leading to constipation.
Now’s the time for the digestive health checklist.
Use this checklist to help get back on digestive track.
- Get enough fibre.
Fibre helps poop stay soft (so it won’t hurt when you go). Dietitians of Canada recommends 25–38 grams of fibre daily. Aim for 1–2 servings of fruit and veg at every meal and snack, and 6+ servings of whole-grain products daily. You can also try Lax-A Fibre, a 100% naturally sourced psyllium fibre for daily use.
- Drink enough fluids.
Fluids help fibre work better. According to Dietitians of Canada, women aged 19+ should aim for about 2.2 litres (9 cups) of fluid daily (more if your activity level is high or it’s hot and humid).
- Get moving.
Exercising decreases the time it takes food to move through your colon, therefore less water is drawn out from your poop and into your body. Translation: your poop won’t be as dry and hard. Take a walk or do some aerobic activity like running or swimming.
Try a laxative for relief from occasional constipation.
If diet and lifestyle changes aren’t working, try a laxative. Different needs call for different laxatives. Whether you’re looking for gentle relief, overnight relief, or immediate relief, Lax-A has a product to relieve occasional constipation. Lax-A-Day is the #1 doctor-recommended laxative in its class.
Learn more about how to relieve constipation at laxasolutions.com.