Home Remedies for Constipation

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What happens when your bowels start to revolt and you start to feel the dragging effects of constipation – a symptom that affects almost everyone at some point in their life? Usually, poor eating habits are to blame, but this is not always the case. Luckily, this is generally a fleeting issue to correct with an assortment of home remedies to help you along the way.


Causes and Symptoms

If you find yourself having a bowel movement fewer than three times per week, then you’re probably suffering from a bout of constipation. Contrary to popular belief, it is quite normal not to have a bowel movement every single day. Normal stool elimination for you could range from two times per day to five times per week, but it’s when you find yourself with drastically reduced bowel movements that you should know that something is amiss.

Constipation occurs when the colon has absorbed too much water or muscle contractions in the colon are at a near standstill. If it takes too long for your stool to move, it becomes hard and dry. Constipation is often a direct result of [1]:


  • Too much milk
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Pregnancy
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Laxative abuse
  • Dehydration
  • Specific diseases or conditions (like strokes), and
  • Not getting enough fiber in your diet

Since constipation produces stools that are often dry, hard, small in size, and difficult to pass – common symptoms include painful straining, bloating, abdominal pains, and the sensation of a full bowel [2].

Constipation Home Remedies

Diets high in processed foods without any relief from fruits, vegetables, beans, and grains is one of the biggest concerns a doctor has for people battling chronic constipation. It’s no secret that most Americans don’t eat enough fiber in order to keep their colon functioning on a healthy level. Did you know you should consume 20 to 35 grams of fiber on a daily basis? Some people only manage 5 grams. So, start eating fiber-rich foods, and consider the following home remedies for constipation:

a) Fiber Supplement:

There are some people who have trouble digesting their recommended amount of daily fiber, which means a fiber supplement could prove quite beneficial. This is why you should consider adding Metamucil, Citrucel or Fibercon to your diet.

b) Epsom Salt:

Mix ¼ teaspoon of Epsom salt and ½ a glass of water for a beverage that soothes constipation.

c) Olive Oil and Orange Juice:

Combine ½ cup of olive oil with ½ cup of orange juice. Drink to treat symptoms of constipation.

d) Castor Oil:

Take 2 to 4 teaspoonfuls of castor oil to treat a bout of constipation.

e) Bring Along a Footstool:

While sitting on the toilet, bring along a footstool to prop up your feet, making sure to keep your knees bent. This will help straighten the angle of your bowel and assist you in passing your stool more quickly.

f) Prune Juice:

Use prune juice for its mild laxative properties, but don’t overdo it on a long-term basis, as the intestines may become dependent on it.

g) Hot Broth:

Remedy mild discomfort from constipation by sipping on a warm cup of broth, which will help get your bowels moving.

h) Carrot Juice:

While it may seem like an odd combination, mix carrot juice with spinach juice to enjoy quick relief from constipation.

i) Mango:

Tap into the natural relieving properties of mango.

j) Rhubarb Root [3]:

If you happen to have a bit of rhubarb root in the refrigerator, consider using this potent laxative to solve a bout of constipation. You can create a tincture to cure symptoms, and then add 10 to 20 drops in 100 milliliters of warm water for a dosage taken three times per day. It is suggested to take this concoction before meals when chronic issues arise.

k) Water:

Keep drinking water throughout the day to soften your stools. It is suggested to consume six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water to keep your bowels moving.

l) Exercise:

The bowel function is stimulated by exercise, which means walking the dog, jogging around the block, and swimming a couple of laps can ease your constipation issues.


[1] http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/constipation/DS00063/DSECTION=symptoms
[2] http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/constipation/
[3] Home Herbal by Penelope Ody; pg. 104.