Eric Bakker N.D.April 1, 2022
8 Minutes

Chronic constipation is defined as infrequent bowel movements or difficult passage of stools lasting several weeks or more after onset of symptoms. According to medical definition, constipation is defined as having less than three bowel motions each week.


What Is Constipation?

Chronic constipation is defined as infrequent bowel movements or difficult passage of stools that can last for several weeks or longer after the initial symptoms. Constipation is defined as having less than three bowel motions each week, according to medical definition.

Despite the fact that constipation seems to be quite common, some people suffer from chronic constipation, which can make it difficult for them to carry out their daily activities. People suffering from chronic constipation may also find themselves straining excessively in order to pass a bowel movement.

Chronic constipation is treated in part by addressing the underlying cause of the condition. However, in some instances, the root reason is never discovered.

Do you go every day? As a general rule, you should have at least one preferably two motions daily, and not too far away from your meals either. If you not at least have one bowel motion each and every day, or if you have inconsistent motions – in terms of how often (frequency), how they look (texture) then you have constipation.

This Is One Problem You Can Usually Fix At Home

In this article we will explore some causes and effects of constipation, and also take a look at how some diets can be a real problem with this annoying complaint and I’ll also give you some tips on how to improve this complaint.

I have found that most cases can be corrected with natural methods, and over 90% of constipation will respond to simple adjustments in lifestyle and diet. But there are always some cases that seem to be either very resistant or almost impossible to “crack”. TBH, I’ve only really seen a handful of such cases in the 34 years of my clinical practice.

The Bristol Stool Chart

Do you ever look at your bowel motions? I call this the eyeball test. It surprises me how many patients I speak with do not even look at their motions. Do look regularly, it will give you a valuable insight into how your digestive system is functioning.
The Bristol Stool Chart, developed by Dr.Heaton at the University of Bristol and first published in the British Medical Journal in 1990. If you are in category 1 – 2, you are quite constipated indeed. A good website to check out is the Bladder and Bowel Community site with their Bristol Stool Form Scale.
No. 3 is starting to look more like a normal motion. I’ll bet many out there can relate to the “snake” motions in No. 4, this tells me that you are having problems with peristalsis and/or constipation, particularly in the recent past, and stress is the big one here.
Colonics are great for restoring the bowel in this situation. Peristalsis basically means a distinctive pattern of smooth muscle contractions that propels foodstuffs and through your oesophagus and intestines.
Stress has quite an amazing effect here, and this is why many will be able to relate to snake like motions – periods of stress have a potent effect on impairing the peristaltic effects in your bowel. I saw as a patient many years ago who mentioned that he noticed blood at times in his bowel motions. Unfortunately he waited for over one year before he paid a visit to his doctor. He is unfortunately no longer with us, having developed bowel and liver cancer and passing away at only 38 years of age. Had the condition been diagnosed very early on, he may have been saved. It is very important to get medical assistance without fail if you ever notice that you are passing any blood. It may just be a haemorrhoid, but it may be something else too. 
The texture of your stool is important, and will determine not only how easy the motion is passed, but can also tell us a lot about the actual health of your digestive system. The longer a motion is in the bowel, the more likely that it will become increasingly dry due to the bowel absorbing water from it, and therefore make the motion much more difficult to pass.
Very loose stools on the other hand, can pass much too easily, and have not been long enough in the bowel to firm up, you will know all about this with a campylobacter infection.
Stress draws blood away from the gut towards the muscles. This in turn can slow digestion and peristalsis down considerably, then constipation occurs.
Should you take laxatives regularly for constipation?, don’t waste your time, try to relax instead. Go for a walk, spend less time on your mobile phone, and if you have problems try and get them sorted sooner rather than later. Small problems when ignored can become huge over time, increasing stress.
Have you noticed that when animals eat, many will want to have a motion not long after? You will commonly find this with young children as well. Dogs and cats appear to have no problem with looking at their bowel motions. They have a very active gastro-colic reflex, and in my experience the elderly have a very poor one.
As adults, many unfortunately “hang on” until the last minute – we all have something too important, and go to the toilet when it is more convenient to actually do so.
I have found this to particularly so with the always busy people with occupations like real estate agents, taxi, truck or courier drivers, shop keepers, etc. Many have consulted me over the years with bowel issues, generally constipation. Many of these people are tired, carry too much weight, and complain of common symptoms like aches and pains, fogginess in the head, sleeping problems and more. All these are common symptoms of constipation.
If you ignore the subtle signs of “needing to go” long enough, your bowel can become quite lazy, and so will you. And then when you really want to go – your bowel won’t! So what are you going to do from now? If you feel like going, you should GO at once.

Constipation Symptoms

Chronic constipation manifests itself in a variety of ways, including:

  • Having less than three movements per week is considered to be constipation.
  • Having lumpy or hard stools can be a common occurrence.
  • Constantly straining to pass bowel motions.
  • Recurring haemorrhoids.
  • Painful, lumpy or hard abdomen.
  • Feelings of queasiness or nausea.
  • Bad breath, halitosis.
  • Coated tongue.
  • Feeling as if there is a blockage in your rectum that prevents you from passing stools.
  • You have the sensation that you seem unable to completely evacuate the stool from your rectum.
  • Needing assistance to empty your rectum, such as pressing on your abdomen with your hands and removing stool from your rectum with a finger, (not uncommon).

It is possible to have chronic constipation if you have experienced two or more of these symptoms for more than three months.

What Causes Constipation?

Improper chewing food

not paying attention with eating: watching TV or reading whilst eating. This can be a real problem, is this you? If you are finding it difficult to go and you can relate to the TV watching or reading– just turn the TV off or stop reading while you eat! Chewing food to a fine particle size makes sense – it facilitates digestion and absorption, improves peristalsis and bowel function. Bible quote: “Chew your grains until they are liquid”.

Dehydration, not enough water

Probably one of the leading causes. Aim for around 30 mls (an ounce) per kg of bodyweight each day when the weather is hot. You may not be having anywhere near that amount, particularly if you have been quite constipated for years. Be sure to drink plenty.

Insufficient intake of dietary fibre

The diets above may well fall into this category, too much protein and too little fibre. Keep you fluid intake high and make sure you eat ample fibre.

Long periods of immobility, stress or depression

Having regular bowel motions to me is a bit like a woman having a regular period. It comes in cycles, and when things go well they tend to stay well – until something happens. If you have recently had problems in going, look what happened just recently. A change in lifestyle? A separation or divorce, change of occupation? Did you start new medication?

Pharmaceutical drugs

Loperamide is an anti-diarrhoea drug which reduces peristalsis and increases intestinal transit time, causing constipation in some.Codeine & morphine are used to control pain but also unfortunately reduce the motility of the stool, and some antidepressants do this as well. Even aspirin can seriously affect the digestive tract, particularly the stomach, liver & small bowel. You may want to get your medications checked out carefully to see if they are a factor in your constipation. So many drugs affect your liver’s function, and can cause congestion here.There will be alternatives to drugs in case there is a constipation connection.

Gallbladder problems

This is an area that comes up so often in the clinic. The 4 F’s – flatulent, forty, fat and fertile. Is that you? I find that many women aged between about 35 – 45, they may like chocolate, wine & nibbles like cheese & crackers, and this group is often affected with constipation or a sluggish bowel. When the gallbladder becomes sluggish, your bowel slows down. Bile is produced by the liver & stored in the gallbladder & helps to soften the stool and facilites excretion. Gallbladder removed? – then take digestive enzymes, e.g., fats & oils are not digested/absorbed well by these folk. Take a digestive enzyme when you take a fish-oil supplement, or Vitamin A. Bitters herbs and foods (brassica family, broccoli, cabage, etc.)

Lack Of Fibre

The most common cause of constipation in Western culture would have to be a lack of dietary fibre combined with a poor sedentary lifestyle. I’ve seen this more times than you can imagine in clinical practice.
Consider the San Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert in Africa. These little bush people are hunter-gatherers who for many thousands of years have supported themselves living in the desert. They hunt mainly various kinds of antelope, but their daily diet has always consisted more of the fruits, nuts and roots and seeds which they seek out in the harsh desert.
It has been found that the bushmen pass many small motions daily, rather than their Western counterparts, who go on average once daily.
The bushmen never appear to suffer from any type of digestive problem because of their naturally whole food and high fibre based diet.
Studies have found a greater bio diversity of gut bacteria in hunter-gather societies. Research has also found that gut bacteria of urban-industrialized populations often have high abundances of Bacteroides, while the gut bacteria from traditional hunter-gatherer or agro-pastoral societies have higher abundances of Prevotella.
Studies have found that individuals with high Prevotella abundances lost more weight, however those with low Prevotella abundances stayed the same weight. The results confirmed the long-held belief that foods with high fiber, whole-grain diet helps people lose weight.
We have not only slowly reduced our fibre intake over the years, and eaten a diet increasingly high in processed foods with substantial amounts of sugar, salt and fat, we have also adopted strange diets to control our weight which include little fibre, low carbohydrates and high protein.
For many years, fat was public enemy # 1, but the high protein diet gurus are blaming obesity on primarily eating too many carbs.
Bread sales are down, people have become more reluctant to buy the humble spud. Pasta makers in the USA were so panicky recently that they actually sponsored a conference of scientists and nutrition experts to say that their product is healthy. On the other hand, eggs, formerly shunned for cholesterol, are selling more than ever. Animal protein has all of a sudden become king of the hill – and so have the health problems associated with it.
These diets started the “low GI” craze around the world as millions embraced the South Beach and Atkins diets. The drug companies even jumped onto this bandwagon, battling for a market once dominated by our older citizens, the market for dietary laxatives.
Because many folk have gone “completely carbo crazy” in diets that are low in fiber and high in fiber-less animal protein, they are also less likely to face a big movement – towards the bathroom.  As a result, sales of fiber laxatives in many countries were booming by 2004, when the high-protein & low carbohydrate craze was at its height.
Hopefully, Atkins and the South Beach diet are passing food fads. If not, all too many may awake one day to find that they are not only more obese but they have numerous digestive health problems like constipation, kidney stones and haemorrhoids & high cholesterol caused by these diets. It is interesting to note that both diets were developed by medical doctors, and not naturopaths! Have these diets really contributed to excellent health in those who created them? Questions arise about the personal health of both these doctors. Dr. Atkins death was supposedly the result of a fall, but doubts have surfaced about his health at the time of his death at age 72.

High Protein Diets Cause Constipation

dr-atkinsThe  Dr. Atkins Diet

How many people have tried the Atkins diet and ended up fatigued, muscle aches & pains, constipated or with other digestive problems ? I’ll bet many of you out there can relate to this, after going onto a low carb and high protein diet, high in saturated fats and cholesterol. Dr. Atkins can’t help but concede the health benefits associated with fiber, in his own words: “plenty of fiber can be found in vegetables, nuts and seeds, fruits, beans and whole unrefined grains” The 2 week “Induction phase” of this diet tells you to completely avoid the starchier carbohydrate foods – the ones that most like to eat, the foods which help to bulk up the bowel motions: breads, pasta, carrots, corn, parsnips, peas, potatoes in all forms and squash, but pumpkin is allowed. In addition, this diet also allows a person to have 2-3 tablespoons of heavy cream or one ounce of sour cream daily, along with lashings of meats, eggs and bacon. No wonder this is a popular diet , but spare a thought for your poor bowel and liver and kidneys groaning under the strain.
The fatty tissue of an animal is also generally where the toxins are stored, so this is not my favorite way to encourage a patient towards a healthier diet and permanent weight management. Atkins is certainly not ideal for vegetarians or vegans as it is a meat-heavy based (protein) diet. This diet has been linked in the States to osteoporosis, heart disease, colon cancer and kidney disease. It is also below the recommended daily values for several vitamins and minerals such as calcium, potassium and magnesium. I know that there will be many people out there who have benefited short-term from this approach, but I’ll bet there are probably many more who didn’t benefit at all long term.
According to medical examiner’s reports, Atkins had a history of heart disease and heart attacks. His weight of 129 kg would have placed the 6-foot-tall doctor in the obese category, perhaps a good candidate for a healthy weight loss program? Dr. Atkins was well aware of the constipation link to his high protein diet, and therefore recommend that all his followers start taking products like Metamucil ® or Splenda ®). (both containing toxic aspartame).

The Atkins Induction Phase

During the induction phase, the Atkins diet may also have a strong diuretic effect for some of its followers, which means a loss of a large amount of water causing a reduction in weight, along with a loss of valuable electrolytes which contain the minerals potassium, magnesium and calcium. This is what causes the leg cramps, and fatigue and weakness many are familiar with this dietary approach. This is why you initially feel good, you loose weight, your energy is up. But this is all short lived, you then start to get tired and grumpy and your bowels play up. The best way to replace these minerals is to add (a little) sea salt to your food to taste and take a chelated mineral supplement (preferably in citrate form) that includes calcium, magnesium and potassium. Also, make sure this supplement contains plenty of trace elements and vitamins, to allow the liver to process the fat & protein more effectively.
Many Atkins critics are skeptical of how a high-protein, high-fat diet can result in weight loss – permanently. Like ALL diets, research shows that people can keep off weight lost with Atkins, as long as they don’t go back to eating the way they used to eat. In my experience, most people tend to gravitate slowly back towards the foods they used to eat before they started the diet anyway. And the weight slowly comes back again – no wonder that weight-loss franchises are popping up around town like mushrooms. It has always been my belief that any effective permanent solution to weight management must also address your emotional challenges, including food cravings and addictions, self-image issues and other self-sabotaging behaviors. These psychological issues are not addressed in both the Atkins’ or South Beach Diet books.

Agatston_1The South Beach Diet

This is what I call the “Atkins Lite”. The Tufts University Health and Nutrition Letter commented on the South Beach Diet in their May 2004 issue: “Disappointingly, the South Beach Diet, developed by a Dr. Agatston, is simply yet another version of Atkins wrapped within a gimmick.”  Like Atkins, there are different phases in South Beach Diet. You eat normal portion sizes in Phase 1, but just about all carbohydrate are restricted. Like Atkins, this is the strictest phase in the diet and will last for two weeks, and instead of lots of red meats, bacon, etc, this diet emphasises lean meats such as chicken, turkey, fish, and shellfish. Low GI vegetables are allowed as well as low-fat cheese, nuts and eggs. Dieters should expect to lose somewhere between 4 to 6 kilos, but again, is it any wonder you get constipated on this regime?
Just like Atkins, you stop all carbs such as breads, pasta and potatoes. You are told to eat plenty of protein (meats) as well as low GI vegetables (greens) which you don’t normally eat in these amounts. And of course you get just about completely blocked up.
Dr. Agatston’s most significant oversight may be his lack of understanding of trans-saturated fats. These artery-clogging fats are to be found in margarine, shortening and many foods such as hot chips, doughnuts and many processed foods, they increase your risk of heart disease and diabetes.Early in The South Beach Diet, Agatston states that trans fats are dangerous; yet, on page 54, he claims that “hot chips and potato chips are actually healthier choices than baked potatoes “.
According to Agatston, the glycemic index “measures the degree to which eating a particular food increases your blood sugar and therefore contributes to weight gain.” With this logic, a person is better off eating ice cream or a chocolate bar instead of a baked potato because the glycemic index of a potato is higher than the other two.
The high protein & low carb diets have been around for awhile, in 1967, a Dr. Irwin Stillman wrote the “Doctor’s Quick Weight Loss Diet,” allowing his patients to eat only meat, eggs, and cheese. Stillman himself died of a heart attack, a similar fate to all doctors it seems who advocate this high protein diet approach. Any diet such as this, composed of 90% protein is necessarily short of other vital substances; should you fail to take a vitamin supplement, you run serious risk of vitamin deficiency.
Because this diet is low in roughage, you will most certainly be constipated, and although Stillman recommends daily to consume eight glasses of water, it will certainly send you to the bathroom frequently to urinate, not to pass motions! In his book,Dr. Agatston openly admits that he actually takes statin pharmaceutical drugs that are used to lower cholesterol. “I personally take aspirin, fish oil capsules, and a statin drug” he writes. Consumers obtain nutrition information from diet books. A study found that over 67% of nutrition facts in Agatson’s book may not be supported in the peer-reviewed literature. (Goff 2006)
But Dr. Agatston, you may not be aware that studies around the world have shown that people on a high fiber vegetarian diets can reduce their cholesterol almost as much as people on statin drugs. Perhaps Dr. Agatston would benefit from a high fibre diet, not the reverse. I’ll bet that the San Bushmen of the Kalahari have never heard of high cholesterol, let alone a statin drug to lower it.
A detailed discussion of the causes and treatments of constipation goes way beyond the scope of this article, but here are some of the more common ones I see in the clinic. Examples range from conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, diverticular disease, infection of the abdomen (e.g. a bacterial, parasite problem or appendicitis) to painful anal conditions that make the person afraid to open their bowels both physically or psychologically. The elderly and very young are groups often afflicted with constipation.

Risk Factors Of Constipation

The risk can increase of developing chronic constipation by a number of factors, including:

  • Being a senior citizen.
  • Being a woman.
  • Being dehydrated (significant problem)
  • Consuming a high-protein (and often low fibre) diet.
  • Physical exercise (minimal or non-existent).
  • Taking certain pharmaceutical drugs, such as sedatives, opioid pain relievers, antidepressants, or BP meds
  • Suffering from mental illness, such as depression, anxiety or eating disorder.

Constipation Complications

Chronic constipation can lead to a variety of complications, including:

  • Veins in your anus that become swollen (haemorrhoids). It is possible that straining to pass a bowel movement will result in swelling in the veins in and around your anus. Haemorrhoids can come and go over time for different reasons.
  • Your anus develops a rip or tear (anal fissure). Small tears in the anus in extreme cases might be caused by a large or difficult stool.
  • Stool that is unable to be excreted (impaction). Chronic constipation can result in a deposit of hard faeces that becomes lodged in your intestines, causing sometimes significant discomfort.
  • An intestinal protrusion that protrudes from the anus (rectal prolapse). When you strain to produce a bowel movement, a little portion of your rectum may extend and protrude from your anus.

Constipation Relief

Medical treatment of constipation

The doctor’s answer is generally either a laxative, or a psyllium fibre supplement like Metamucil® . I’ve got a better idea, let’s find and treat the actual cause of the constipation, instead of just treating the symptoms.

Some practitioners would define constipation as the passage of a hard stool. Whilst a doctor I once knew told an elderly patient that it was perfectly acceptable for her to have a bowel motion every ten days, if that was her “regular pattern”. That’s just plain silly. In my opinion, it is the frequency and texture of your bowel motions which are all important factors, not the term constipation, which will always remain arbitrary.

The frequency of bowel motions (how often you go) is important because it tells me how well your gut is functioning, and also how well your ‘gastro-colic reflex’ is working. Of course we are not taking account here if you have acute diarrhea from an infection or parasites, giardia, appendicitis, etc.

When you eat food it passes from your mouth down the oesophagus and into your stomach. The stomach then tells the colon to empty, and this is why (you should) after a meal feel like going to the toilet. This communication between the top end of the digestive system and the bottom end is called the ‘gastro-colic reflex’. In other words, the top tells the bottom that it must empty, because there is food coming down its way.

I went to Seattle in 2003 to complete a nutritional medicine course, and heard Dr. Alan Gaby say:  “Small stools, big hospitals, big stools, small hospitals.

Stop going on those crazy fad diets!

Popular and fad diets include:

  • The Grapefruit (Hollywood) Diet
  • The Fit For Life Diet
  • The Atkins Diet
  • South Beach Diet
  • The Zone Diet
  • The Lemonade Diet
  • The Tapeworm Diet
  • The Cabbage Soup Diet
  • The Paleo Diet
  • The Raw Food Diet
  • The Dukan Diet
  • The Ketogenic Diet
  • The Gluten Free Diet

I could make this very long if I made note of all the diet books I have in my library. There are that many diets. Start to eat sensibly and permanently. Going on a diet is like getting involved in the latest fad, fads change every so many years and I’ve seen plenty, but common sense prevails. Be careful about any kind of “induction” phase of any kind of diet. You may find yourself stuck in one, sometimes for years. I’ve seen it happen plenty of times, the person stayed on the diet, including many different kinds of restrictions for many years.

If you’ve been on diet after diet after diet, surely its about time you realised that the only real way to improving your bowel, your waistline, your health along with your wallet is to eat and drink healthy and clean long-term. It takes time to build a healthy gut, it’s the bacteria you want to cultivate, plenty of good ones while discouraging those bad ones.

Those bad bugs love alcohol, soda drinks, candy, ice cream, chocolate, take away foods, and all those foods we know are no good. Give away those diet books and use plain common sense when you eat, regardless of what some latest fad book may tell you. Avoid eating too much crap in your life, it all adds up over time and becomes habitual.

Eat smaller, more frequent meals and avoid overeating at one sitting

Take time to eat, breathe slowly and chew food thoroughly. Are you still eating your dinner on your lap in front of the evening news? What a great way to digest your food. Try eating at the dinner table, relax and talk about things other than the gloom and doom the media like to digitally serve up to us at 6.00 o’clock.

Try a different diet approach

Beans, chick peas, lentils, fresh fruit and vegetables, avocado, fresh fish, walnuts, pumpkin and sesame seeds, dried fruits (not too much with adrenal fatigue – the dried fruit that is), If you’re not used to eating a lot of fiber slowly increase your intake as you may initially have increased flatulence, gas. Soaking beans first in water (and freezing them after soaking) and discarding the water you soaked them in, may help to reduce flatulence from this group. Try adding some yogurt in your diet, get a natural sour Greek yogurt.

Reduce your caffeine intake

Caffeine may promote constipation by causing you to loose fluids. You urinate more and pass more liquid, but dehydration can make bowel motions increasingly difficult depending on how much coffee or tea you consume. Try herbal teas like peppermint, fennel, fenugreek, chamomile or liquorice, they can all help with constipation and are caffeine free alternatives. Another good substitute is to drink

Reduce your red meat intake

Do we really need to eat that much meat? Many people I’ve seen in my clinic simply eat too much meat, especially red meat, pork and chicken. Too much animal protein is associated with constipation, and I urge those who eat plenty of meat daily (and who are reading this right now) to cut back on animal proteins, not just for the sake of constipation, but for your overall health. There are many studies that have linked a high animal protein diet to a whole host of chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. Was the Paleo diet plant based?

Eat more bran

Add unprocessed oat bran to hot cereals and yogurt. Eat bran cereals or shredded wheat, foods made with whole grains. Oat bran is a particularly good bran due to its ability to improve transit time, reduce cholesterol levels and even act as a prebiotic. Bran is good to add to the diet if there has been a long-term history of constipation. Bran is good to add to a diet also rich in foods that lubricate the intestines.

Foods that lubricate the intestines

Eat foods like beet, okra (gumbo), kiwi fruit, seaweed, spinach, sesame seed & oil, honey, pear, prune, peach, apple, apricot, walnut, pine nut, almond, alfalfa sprouts, carrot and cauliflower. So many nice foods to choose from! These are good choices for those who have difficulty eliminating their bowels. This can manifest like ineffectual urging or multiple bowel motions with only small eliminations each time.

Foods which promote bowel motions

Eat foods that help move stool through the intestines – cabbage, papaya, peas, sesame seeds, coconut, kumara, asparagus, figs, kiwi fruit, aloe vera, slippery elm bark powder. These foods are good stool bulkers than can help you clean out the bowel, they also promote the growth of the bifidobacterium, the large intestine predominant species. Probiotics are good for the bowel and help with constipation.

Herbs & foods that soothe the intestines

Eat foods like– marshmallow root, ground flax seeds, ground fenugreek seeds, ground psyllium seeds, licorice root, aloe vera pulp, slippery elm bark. These are good choices for those with painful haemorrhoids, fissures or fistulas. These are also good choices for women after childbirth or who have had an episiotomy.

Good bacteria enhancing foods

Eat foods like– miso, sauerkraut, yoghurt, kombucha mushroom, kefir and quark .

Decrease intake of saturated (animal) fats

Eat foods with an increased level of essential fatty acids (cold-water fish, nuts, and seeds). It is best to take Omega 3  daily in small amounts, 2000mg/day is generally sufficient.

Eat more fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains

Yeah, yeah – I know, this is basic stuff, but often taken for granted. Do you do basic stuff basically on a daily basis? I’ll bet you forget to eat fresh fruits and vegetables every single day, and BTW –  did you know that a recent survey found that 17% of British people never eat fresh fruits or vegetables!!  Incredible but true.

Drink more water

Do you drink water regularly throughout the day? Warm lemon water taken before meals stimulates digestion. Try the juice of ½ a lemon in water in the morning before breakfast. Remember to drink plenty of liquids. You need more fluid particularly when you have more fibre for fibre to work effectively. Drink less alcohol. Do you think when you drink?

Stewed or soaked prunes

Have from 1 to 3 a day, have a slightly laxative effect. Prune tea – 3 prunes in a 250ml cup, add boiling water, leave stand until warm, drink & eat the prunes. Have 1 cup per day.

Flax meal

Have 1 heaping tsp. in 8 oz. of apple juice, provides fibre and soothes the digestive tract. Follow with an additional 8 oz. of water. LSA mix is excellent too. Slippery elm bark powder is very good also.

Take  a top quality probiotic supplement

Constipation is helped by probiotics.  I always recommend the addition of a probiotic with meals twice daily with constipation, it can make all the difference.

Eat Greek natural yoghurt

Yogurt is beneficial not just for those who suffer from constipation but also for the general health of the gastrointestinal system. Years of experience as a naturopath have led me to the conclusion that yoghurt is one of the most beneficial cultured foods for the digestive tract. Read: Treating Constipation With Yoghurt

Colonic hydrotherapy

I have solved very tricky cases of constipation with recommending a course of colonics plus other complementary and alternative methods of healing. There is no question about the huge difference a professional colon therapist can bring to the patient by utilising colon hydrotherapy.

Liver and bowel detox

Go and see your practitioner, you will be glad you did. And, you’ll probably loose a fair amount of weight as well. Are you eating plenty of foods containing fibre, and drinking water but you STILL can’t go every day? Then go and do the Liver & Gallbladder Flush.

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