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You May Not Know These 8 Foods Are Causing Constipation

You May Not Know These 8 Foods Are Causing Constipation

Constipation.

Not a topic that many would like to talk about, despite the fact that approximately 15 percent of Americans experience it.

Constipation is defined by having fewer than three bowel movements per week or painful and difficult bathroom breaks. Diet plays a significant role in constipation, so knowing which foods are more likely to cause this problem and which can limit your risk can provide you with some relief.

1. Dairy

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    A diet high in cheese and other low-fiber/high-fat foods such as eggs, cheese, and meat can impact digestion. Cutting down on the intake of dairy and mixing in salads and other foods with high fiber, can help ease constipation. Dairy can lead to constipation due to the to the high-fat and low-fiber content.

    2. Chips

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      Snacks like potato chips are constipating also due to the low fiber content. Chips, like dairy, are high-fat foods that delay digestion, leading to a full-stomach feeling that mirrors constipation.

      2. Red Meat

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        Though red meat by itself isn’t a specific cause of constipation, the problem is that red meat takes the place of fiber-rich options in our diet when it’s consumed regularly. “Several servings of red meat per week may lead to a backed-up feeling,” Dr. Spielmann says. Instead of adding more foods that cause constipation to your meal, make sure that your steak comes with plenty of fiber-rich foods, like a baked potato (eat the skin) and a large salad for constipation relief.

        3. Bananas

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          Not all bananas are created equal. Depending on the type, bananas can be nutritional or constipating. Unripened, green bananas are constipating while ripe bananas are high in soluble fiber that aid with bowel movement and cleansing. For relief, pick bananas that are ripe.

          4. Cookies

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            Cookies are defined as refined carbohydrates, like pastries, cakes, and many crackers. With this, they are low in fiber and high in fat. It is best to reduce your intake refined carbohydrates in favor of higher-fiber dessert or snack choices, such as fresh fruit.

            5. Frozen Dinners

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              Frozen dinners are very convenient. They can save time in preparing meals, and can be prepared with limited culinary skills. These dinners are almost always low in fiber and often high in fat. Also due to preservation practices for the food, they are usually high in sodium. High sodium content concentrates the water in our bodies, keeping it from pushing waste through the body. Keep these constipating foods to a minimum.

              6. Chocolate

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                Moderate chocolate intake has been shown to be healthy, loaded with antioxidants, and can increase our mood. Although, large amounts of chocolate can slow the digestion process. It is thought to slow down muscle contractions and bowel movements.

                In one study, researchers in Germany asked people who had constipation to name the foods they thought caused it. Large amounts of chocolate was mentioned most frequently.

                7. Bread

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                  Breads made from wheat or rye are rich in fructans. At times the body does not effectively digest and absorb fructan-containing foods and as a result, bacteria in your colon ferment the fructans, start creating gas. Extra water and gas present in your intestines can cause abdominal discomfort, pain, cramping and changes in the regularity or consistency of your bowel movements. Gluten is also a protein found in breads containing wheat flour, rye flour and barley flour. Foods made from gluten-containing grains can be especially problematic for people with celiac disease, which affects 3 million Americans, or gluten intolerance, which affects 18 million Americans, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

                  Avoiding Constipation

                  Make sure to get 25 to 35 grams of fiber a day. This is the ideal amount for your intestine to regulate the bowel movement. Also, drink lots of water to help the digestion process. Make sure to consume 64 ounces of water on a daily basis to help prevent constipation.

                  These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Always consult with your professional health care provider before initiating or modifying your exercise and diet plan.

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                  Last Updated on February 25, 2020

                  Face Adversity with a Smile

                  Face Adversity with a Smile

                  I told my friend Graham that I often cycle the two miles from my house to the town centre but unfortunately there is a big hill on the route. He replied, ‘You mean fortunately.’ He explained that I should be glad of the extra exercise that the hill provided.

                  My attitude to the hill has now changed. I used to grumble as I approached it but now I tell myself the following. This hill will exercise my heart and lungs. It will help me to lose weight and get fit. It will mean that I live longer. This hill is my friend. Finally as I wend my way up the incline I console myself with the thought of all those silly people who pay money to go to a gym and sit on stationery exercise bicycles when I can get the same value for free. I have a smug smile of satisfaction as I reach the top of the hill.

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                  Problems are there to be faced and overcome. We cannot achieve anything with an easy life. Helen Keller was the first deaf and blind person to gain a University degree. Her activism and writing proved inspirational. She wrote, “Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

                  One of the main determinants of success in life is our attitude towards adversity. From time to time we all face hardships, problems, accidents, afflictions and difficulties. Some are of our making but many confront us through no fault of our own. Whilst we cannot choose the adversity we can choose our attitude towards it.

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                  Douglas Bader was 21 when in 1931 he had both legs amputated following a flying accident. He was determined to fly again and went on to become one of the leading flying aces in the Battle of Britain with 22 aerial victories over the Germans. He was an inspiration to others during the war. He said, “Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t do this or that. That’s nonsense. Make up your mind, you’ll never use crutches or a stick, then have a go at everything. Go to school, join in all the games you can. Go anywhere you want to. But never, never let them persuade you that things are too difficult or impossible.”

                  How can you change your attitude towards the adversity that you face? Try these steps:

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                  1. Confront the problem. Do not avoid it.
                  2. Deliberately take a positive attitude and write down some benefits or advantages of the situation.
                  3. Visualise how you will feel when you overcome this obstacle.
                  4. Develop an action plan for how to tackle it.
                  5. Smile and get cracking.

                  The biographies of great people are littered with examples of how they took these kinds of steps to overcome the difficulties they faced. The common thread is that they did not become defeatist or depressed. They chose their attitude. They opted to be positive. They took on the challenge. They won.

                  Featured photo credit: Jamie Brown via unsplash.com

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