Promote bowel movements: improve bowel movements

Bowel movement problems: promote and improve bowel movements. Complaints about bowel movements may be related to a blockage (constipation) in the large intestine. This is a common problem and is caused by a slower passage of stool through the colon. This allows the colon to extract more water than normal from the stool, resulting in stools that are hard, dry and difficult to pass. Bowel movements can be improved in various ways. For example, you can eat foods that contain prebiotic fiber. These can improve your digestion and the balance of good gut bacteria. This promotes bowel movements and can often help relieve constipation.

Promote bowel movements

  • Bowel movement problems: constipation
  • characteristics of stool
  • Constipation
  • Causes of delayed passage
  • Promote and improve bowel movements
  • Enough movement
  • Sufficient fiber in the diet
  • Adequate fluid intake
  • Good toilet behavior
  • Home remedies
  • Drink a glass of lukewarm water
  • Foods that contain lactic acid
  • Dried fruit
  • Wheat bran, psyllium seed, linseed and chia seed
  • Eat probiotic foods or take probiotic supplements
  • Eat prebiotic foods
  • Magnesium citrate
  • Conclusion
  • Macrogol and electrolytes

Bowel movement problems: constipation

characteristics of stool

How often a person needs to defecate varies from person to person. Some people need to defecate two to three times a day and others only go to the toilet once every two to three days for the ‘big errand’. What matters is that the consistency (ie the degree of firmness) of the stool is normal. The shape of a healthy turd is long, round and smooth – a continuous dark brown sausage that can be easily discharged.

The average weight of a turd is about 350 grams, but the weight can vary greatly. The average turd consists of 75% water, 10% undigested food and 15% billions of bacteria.

Constipation / Source: Istock.com/herjua

Constipation

Complaints about bowel movements may be related to a blockage (constipation) in the large intestine. Constipation is a common problem and is caused by a slower passage of stool through the colon. This allows the colon to extract more water than normal from the stool, resulting in stools that are hard, dry and difficult to pass.

Causes of delayed passage

Delayed passage of stool can have several causes:

  • dehydration and a low-fiber diet can cause hard stools;
  • there are many drugs that slow down the passage;
  • Disorders and conditions that can slow the passage of stool include an inactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism), high calcium levels (hypocalcemia), and Parkinson’s disease;
  • dyschezia (spastic pelvic floor syndrome) is a bowel disorder caused by the inability to control and control the anal muscles and pelvic floor muscles, resulting in constipation;
  • closure of the large intestine by, for example, a tumor in the last part of the large intestine, which can lead to constipation and cramps and the stool can take on the shape of a pencil due to the narrowing (so-called pencil stool);
  • the aging process itself does not pose a risk of constipation, but elements associated with this process may pose an increased risk (such as increased use of medicines and less exercise);
  • Pain and psychogenic factors such as depression are common causes of constipation.

Promote and improve bowel movements

Constipation is usually the result of a sedentary lifestyle and a poor diet. Bowel movements can be improved in various ways. Factors that can promote normal bowel movements include:

  • enough movement;
  • sufficient fiber in the diet;
  • adequate fluid intake;
  • good toilet behavior.

Exercise encourages your colon to move / Source: Istock.com/michaeljung

Enough movement

Get plenty of exercise. Take the bike more often instead of the car, take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator and take a walk every day.

Sufficient fiber in the diet

Fiber (indigestible food components) helps retain water in the stool, making it bulkier and making it easier to move. A distinction is made between two types of fibers:

  • fermentable dietary fiber; and
  • non-fermentable dietary fiber.

Fermentable dietary fibers are fermented (broken down) by bacteria in the large intestine. These dietary fibers serve as food for so-called good bacteria in the intestine, but also as nutrition for the intestinal cells themselves. They thus contribute to good defense and support of the immune system. They also promote bowel movements. Fibers that serve as food for these bacteria are called prebiotics .

Vegetables / Source: Istock.com/warrengoldswain

The non-fermentable dietary fibers are not broken down by bacteria and leave the body unchanged. This type of dietary fiber gives more volume to the stool, which promotes intestinal motility and therefore smooth bowel movements. It also binds substances to itself, which then do not end up in the body. Consider cholesterol. In addition, fiber intake gives you a feeling of fullness more quickly, which is due to the fact that soluble fiber slows down the passage of food through the digestive system. The person who consumes sufficient fiber is therefore inclined to eat less. As a result, the person maintains his or her weight. Some people also use fiber to lose weight.

Fiber-rich products such as legumes, potatoes, vegetables and fruit almost always contain both types of fiber. Various whole grain products, the peels of fruit and cell wall components of vegetables mainly contain non-fermentable dietary fibres. Animal products do not contain dietary fiber.

The recommended daily amount of fiber is 30 grams for women and 40 grams for men. To promote bowel movements, the diet can be supplemented with fiber tablets or wheat bran – the outer membrane of the wheat grain. Wheat bran is rich in dietary fiber. It is important that the person drinks enough. Wheat bran from Zonnatura, for example, can be used in various dishes as an additional source of dietary fiber. Bowel movements can also be stimulated by linseed.

Tip!
Every morning for breakfast, have a bowl of yoghurt with muesli and a generous scoop of broken linseed, which has already been soaked in water the night before. Do not throw away the water, but mix the linseed with the water into the yogurt. Do not add sugar.

Mix an amount of wheat bran with water or fruit juice every evening and drink it. Or mix wheat bran with yogurt and some water and drink it. Don’t add sugar to this either.

Adequate fluid intake

Sufficient drinking is essential for smooth stools and good bowel movements. Therefore, drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.

Good toilet behavior

Too much stress and time pressure make the intestines sluggish. In times of stress, many people eat irregularly or consume fast food that is low in fiber. You often don’t drink enough and you don’t take the time to poop (on time). Good toilet behavior promotes bowel movements. Go to the toilet as soon as you feel the urge. It is not good to retain stools as this can cause a blockage. If stool is retained, it remains in the body for too long and becomes hard because too much fluid is removed from it.

Fresh fruit / Source: Istock.com/karelnoppe

Hanging over the toilet bowl is also not conducive to bowel movements, as the intestines cannot be emptied properly in this position. Sit up straight with both feet on the floor. It is important that you do not press too hard. Hard pressing can cause hemorrhoids.

Home remedies

Many home remedies are known to easily stimulate bowel movements without side effects. You have to try out for yourself what helps your intestines get going.

Drink a glass of lukewarm water

Some intestines need a push in the morning. Drink a glass of lukewarm water on an empty stomach. Fruit acids, such as those in orange juice or grapefruit juice, also stimulate digestion.

Foods that contain lactic acid

Consume sour milk products such as cottage cheese, buttermilk, kefir or probiotic yogurt with special lactic acid bacteria every day. Sauerkraut, raw or cooked, and sauerkraut juice have a mild laxative effect due to the lactic acid they contain. If you are lactose intolerant, you should of course not take dairy products.

Dried fruit

Soak dried plums overnight. Put the fiber-rich fruits in small pieces in the muesli and drink the soaking water. As a snack, four to five dried figs, apricots or pears also taste delicious.

Wheat bran, psyllium seed, linseed and chia seed

As an ingredient in milk, yogurt, oatmeal, fruit juice or smoothies: one to two teaspoons of these digestive aids (psyllium seed or psyllium, wheat bran, flax seed or chia seed) can increase stool volume many times over. However, you must always drink enough to do this, otherwise you will get complaints.

Eat probiotic foods or take probiotic supplements

Probiotics are living microorganisms and these can help prevent chronic constipation. It is believed that probiotic foods can help improve intestinal bacterial flora and prevent constipation. To incorporate probiotics into your diet, try eating probiotic-containing foods. Examples include yogurt, sauerkraut and kimchi, which contain live, friendly bacteria. You can also try a probiotic supplement.

Eat prebiotic foods

Dietary fiber increases stool consistency and bulk, both of which can improve bowel movements. Another way some fibers can help treat chronic constipation is through their effects on digestion. Prebiotic fiber improves digestion by feeding good intestinal bacteria. This can improve the balance of your intestinal bacteria. Foods high in prebiotic fiber include garlic, onions and bananas.

Inulin is found in garlic, among other things. / Source: Stevepb, Pixabay

Inulin
You can also take inulin as a supplement daily. Inulin is a prebiotic that stimulates the growth of health-promoting bifidobacteria. In addition to significantly improving digestion, it also reduces constipation and can improve stool consistency in people with loose stools.

Magnesium citrate

Magnesium citrate is an easily absorbable form of magnesium. Taking magnesium citrate is a popular home remedy for constipation. It is a type of osmotic laxative that is available without a prescription. Magnesium citrate can soften the stool, encourage intestinal movements or relax the intestines.

Conclusion

Good bowel movements require a high-fiber diet with lots of vegetables, fruit and bread and little saturated fat, sufficient fluid intake and regular, preferably daily exercise.

Macrogol and electrolytes

Macrogol and electrolytes is a powdered laxative. You dissolve the drug in water and then drink it. Macrogol is used to treat chronic constipation in adults and children aged 12 years and older. The medicine makes your stool or poop softer and easier to excrete, which clears or reduces the constipation.

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