Some foods, especially low in fiber, promote constipation while others tend to slow transit. In both cases, the body will need a food supply that helps the intestine to resume its normal mode of functioning.
Here are 7 constipating foods to avoid when stools are hard and difficult to eliminate, as well as 8 foods that promote transit and help you find balance.
7 Constipating Foods
White rice, unlike brown rice, does not contain enough fiber. It should therefore be banned from your diet if you are constipated. In case of diarrhea, the effect will be more beneficial since white rice leaves practically no residue in the intestine, which reduces the contraction of the colon and the increased need to go to the toilet.
Red meat is slower to digest than other foods, red meat is not indicated in cases of constipation since it slows down transit. When it is integrated into the diet, it is advisable to accompany it with plenty of vegetables to make up for the lack of fibre. As much as possible, prefer lean meat to fatty meat which can accentuate the slowing down of gastric emptying.
Rich in starches, the potato, especially eaten without the skin like fries or mashed potatoes, slows transit and is not conducive to a good defecation process. It is therefore necessary to reduce its consumption in case of constipation.
Pastries are high in fat, with very little water and fiber. They can thus constipate you. It would be best to combine them with other sweets such as a portion of fruit and not consume them with soda, but preferably with water or fruit juice without added sugar.
Sugary, carbonated drinks like sodas and high-sugar foods like cookies or candies are also constipating. It is better to favor water or pure fruit juices for better hydration of the stools.
Although the banana is a fruit, unlike other fruits, it is not recommended because it tends to absorb water and dehydrate the stool. In addition, when it is not yet very ripe, the sugar it contains is still in the starch state and is considered by nutritionists as a starch. Excellent provider of potassium, the banana is not to be banned from the diet, it is enough just to choose it very ripe so that it is less constipating.
Although carrots are vegetables, when cooked, beware of them if you have a transit problem. Indeed, just like bananas, they absorb water and slow down transit.
Good advice in case of constipation
- Don’t stand still
- Go for a walk or play sports
- drink a lot
- Limit the consumption of industrial foods
- Avoid foods that are too sweet and too much salt.
8 foods that promote transit
It can happen that constipation is caused by a medical pathology, but most of the time, it is caused by a dietary imbalance.
Here are the foods to eat if you are constipated.
Vegetables are high fiber foods. Since these are not absorbed or digested, they stay in the intestine and help soften the stool. Of course, it is not a miracle food, the effect can be quite slow in case of constipation, but it is advisable to include vegetables in the daily menu.
It should also be noted that it is cooked vegetables that are laxative, especially carrots, green beans, leeks and peas. If you prefer raw vegetables, opt instead for cucumbers, lettuce, spinach or tomatoes, to eat in salads.
Berries, apricots, kiwis, and high-fiber fruits like citrus and mango are anti-constipation foods. Prunes also contain a substance that stimulates transit, it is dihydroxyphenylisatin. If the ideal is to consume fresh fruit.
Coffee, in addition to waking us up in the morning, helps stimulate the digestive system. Be careful, this effect is more significant in people who rarely consume this drink. If you already drink coffee daily and for a long time, it might be less effective. Moreover, tea is also a laxative drink. In addition to its L-theanine content, beneficial for relieving stress, it also contains caffeine. Tea, especially green tea, thus has the same effect as coffee in accelerating transit.
Walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts and seeds such as flax or chia seeds promote transit. However, it is recommended to consume them in small quantities.
Dried fruits and vegetables are rich in fiber. You can thus eat dried beans, lentils or flageolet beans to fill your fiber intake. Similarly, dried fruits such as apricots, raisins or prunes can help boost transit.
Whole grains such as wholemeal flour or brown rice help fight constipation. Thanks to their cell walls, they are not completely absorbed and soften the stool. In addition, they retain water, which makes them particularly laxative foods. Feel free to add oat or wheat bran to your compotes if you are constipated.
It is true that taking probiotics is not always recommended for people who are constipated. However, probiotics are beneficial for improving the intestinal flora and helping to balance intestinal disorders. Consuming yogurt with probiotics allows you to tone up intestinal transit and fight against constipation or diarrhea.
Water is particularly indicated in case of constipation. Drinking 2 to 3 liters of water would be ideal to complete the effect of fiber and better hydrate the stool. Magnesium is known for its laxative effect, it is therefore advisable to favor mineral water rich in this trace element. To vary the taste a little, it is possible to alternate the water with herbal teas, herbal tea or vegetable broth. Fresh fruit juices also help improve transit. Apple, grape or citrus juice is particularly recommended in case of constipation. The ideal is not to add sugar to your drink.