If you are suffering from a mild case of constipation, then there are juices that you can drink to help to get your digestive track going. If you have a severe case of constipation, then of course you should consult your doctor, but it is also normal to now and then experience some constipation and it can make you feel uncomfortable.
But constipation is defined as when you have less than three bowel movements per week. Also, another sign that you could be constipated is when you have trouble passing stools. That is since the stools can become dry and hard, and it might be hard to pass.
Here are the symptoms of constipation:
• infrequent bowel movements
• needing help to empty your rectum, such as with your hands or fingers
• straining to have bowel movements
• feeling blocked up or like you cannot fully empty your bowels
• hard or lumpy stools.
The occasional constipation, although not ideal, is normal. It is only if the constipation last longer than several weeks, or is an ongoing issue, then some complications could occur. These type of complications could include anal fissures, rectal prolapse, hemorrhoids, or fecal impaction.
People that are more likely to develop chronic cases of constipation are older people, females, people with bad diet habits, people that do not drink enough water, people that do not exercise, and some medications can be a factor.
Luckily, you could sip some juice to get things going. This is based on research as published in the Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. The study found that juices could help to rise your water content, but also bowel movements. The key to why these juices worked at reducing constipation is since they contained sorbitol that is a non-absorbable carbohydrate.
Although you could use pasteurized juices, which could help to solve your constipation issue, it is better to go for juices that have naturally occurring sorbitol, including apple, prune, and pear juices. Furthermore, if you are going to drink some juice to alleviate your constipation problem, then you only need to consume a small amount. In fact, all you need is half a cup of juice, daily, ideally at breakfast. Drinking your eight glasses of water is still important to keep you regular.
Drinking juices might not be ideal for everyone. People on a very strict diet or people with diabetes might have to be careful, or should rather avoid drinking juices to solve their constipation problems.
Apple juice is normally recommended for children. This is since apple juice has a gentle laxative effect as it has a high ratio of fructose to glucose and sorbitol content. Just one thing, applesauce will not give you the same effect an apple juice. This is since applesauce contains higher levels of pectin then the juice. What pectin does is to add bulk to the stools and could make your stools more difficult to pass. Therefore, applesauce is better to take if you have diarrhea.
A very popular choice of juice to relieve constipation is prune juice. In fact, every eight-ounce glass contains about 2.6 grams of fiber. That is 10 percent of your daily requirement. While the fiber may bulk up your stools, the sorbitol in the prune juice helps soften them, making them easier to pass. Prune juice is also a good source of vitamin C and iron.
Eating dried plums, or prunes, is another way to ward off constipation. In fact, one study suggests that prunes should be considered a first-line therapy when dealing with constipation.
Pear juice has four times more sorbitol than what apple juice. The taste of pear juice will also be more acceptable than prune juice. Although pear juice lacks the good source of vitamins that prune juice contains.
You could also squeeze lemon juice into a glass of warm water. Otherwise, other beverages that could help to break your constipation is by drinking coffee, tea, and hot water in general.
Ideally stay away from carbonated drinks, as those will not be helpful.
The bottom line
Although including juice into your diet might be a good idea generally, but be warned that juice contain fructose sugars. These can lead to abdominal troubles due to malabsorption.
But what you should be doing is to exercise more, eat a diet that is full of fresh fruits and vegetables. If you consume fruits and vegetables then you should get your daily dose of fiber in. You could also sprinkle some unprocessed wheat bran over your breakfast cereal. Alternatively, you could add this bran in your smoothies, as it will increase your amount of fiber.