About 20% of the population suffers from constipation. Though not very interesting to know, this is quite important – it might help you someday.
A low-fiber diet, physical inactivity, or even old age can make it difficult to poop. Though some remedies include certain laxatives, fiber supplements, and stool softeners, the best could be some foods that boost regularity. Which is what we will discuss here.
What’s The Science Behind Poop?
Before we get to the list of foods, it is important we understand the science behind why we do what we do.
It makes sense – doesn’t it? For those who eat, there also must be a system that removes the leftovers post the digestion process. A bowel movement is a major way our body discards the waste. It compacts the leftovers into a mass (what we call feces or stool) and passes it through the rectum and anus. Our bowel movement is an indicator of our general health.
You might have three bowel movements in a week, or you might have three in a day. The patterns and frequency might change, but as far as everything else stays the same, this is a sign of good health.
Before we get ahead, we have something interesting to share. You probably are not pooping the right way. Eh? The following image will tell you why.
Well, that’s with the positioning. Which is one part of the equation. The other part is the intake.
What Are The Foods That Help You Poop?
Some of the top foods that make you poop include:
- Hot beverages
- Brussels sprouts
- Chia seeds
- Epsom salt
Apples are rich in fiber, which passes through your intestines undigested and promotes regular bowel movements (1). Apples also contain another soluble fiber called pectin, which has laxative effects. It reduces the colon transit time, treats constipation, and improves digestive health as well (2). Pulpy apple juice also works.
Even apple cider vinegar is considered a good cure for constipation. Though there is no scientific research yet, certain sources claim that it acts as a laxative.
2. Hot Beverages
This can include hot coffee or tea (including green tea) or even hot water. Hot liquids are known to stimulate the bowels and ease constipation. They also widen the blood vessels – this aids digestion and makes pooping easy.
As per studies, warm water can have favorable effects on intestinal movements (3).
Apricots, especially the Japanese apricots, were found to increase defecation frequency and contraction of the colon (4).
Bananas are rich in fiber, and that’s one reason they relieve constipation and help you poop. Green bananas also contain resistant starch, which works like soluble fiber and eases the intestines (5).
Just like all fruits, blueberries are also rich in dietary fiber that can ease symptoms of constipation and make you poop. Ensure you avoid canned blueberries – as these are additionally sweetened and contain lesser nutrients.
6. Brussels Sprouts
These mini cabbages are also good sources of fiber, which makes your stool bulky and helps you poop – treating constipation in the process. But if you aren’t used to consuming much fiber before, start small. Otherwise, the fiber in the sprouts doesn’t break down in the small intestine – ultimately leading to gas.
7. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are not only high in fiber but also contain healthy fats and help absorb water. They can hence help treat constipation and trigger poop. You can take 2 to 3 tablespoons of chia seeds every day. Ideally, soak them to release the nutrients.
8. Epsom Salt
Though Epsom salt looks the same as table salt, its composition is different – it contains magnesium and sulfate. Taking Epsom salt increases the water content in your intestines. This softens your stool and makes you poop. Simply dissolve 2 to 4 teaspoons of Epsom salt in 8 ounces of water and drink right away. Reduce the dosage for kids.
Grapes have mild laxative properties, and this can help ease constipation (6). And then, there is fiber – just 10 grapes offer you about 2.6 grams of fiber. This can help with your regularity issues.
Even without its pith, the fruit seems to have laxative properties that can help relieve constipation and make you poop. Grapefruits contain about 2.3 grams of fiber per 154-gram serving.
But keep in mind that grapefruit juice might interfere with certain medications. Hence, if you are taking any other medication, do consult your doctor first.
Kombucha is a variety of sweetened black or green tea drinks – and is commonly taken as a functional beverage. Fermented kombucha tea contains probiotics, which are known to help relieve constipation (7).
One medium kiwi has about 2 grams of fiber, which is a combination of the soluble and insoluble forms. This fiber in the fruit can help relieve constipation.
13. Lemon Water
Water is a natural lubricant that softens the stool. And lemons, being acidic, work on the digestive system and get things moving. The two can make a powerful remedy for constipation.
You can drink warm lemon water before bedtime. This will help loosen the fecal matter during sleep.
Just like any fruit, mangoes are rich in fiber and help ease constipation. But what could be more effective are the phytochemicals in the mango pulp, which can enhance digestive health and help you poop.
One large juicy orange offers you 4 grams of fiber for just 86 calories. In addition, oranges (and citrus fruits in general) contain a flavonol called naringenin, which, as per Chinese researchers, can work as a laxative and help you poop.
Oatmeal is one of those breakfast foods that make you poop. One cup of regular oatmeal contains 4 grams of fiber, half of which is insoluble fiber. This can prevent constipation and help you poop.
17. Olive Oil
The fats in olive oil can smoothen the insides of the bowels – and this makes stools easier to pass. The fats in the oil also help the stools hold more water.
Prunes are often considered nature’s remedy for constipation due to two reasons. One, they are rich in insoluble fiber. And two, they also contain a natural laxative called sorbitol.
It’s fiber, again. Quinoa contains twice as much fiber as most other grains. Hence, it can make you poop and ease your constipation troubles.
Being dried fruits, raisins contain concentrated amounts of fiber – and this can treat constipation and trigger poop.
One cup of spinach contains 4 grams of fiber, and that’s a reason good enough for anyone to take it to ease constipation. More importantly, spinach also contains magnesium – a mineral that helps the colon contract and draws water in to flush things through.
Though yogurt contains probiotics and can help ease constipation, some sources say it can, instead, cause the condition. Hence, talk to your doctor before using yogurt for this purpose.
Cabbage is super-rich in dietary fiber, with a 1-cup serving offering close to 3 grams of fiber. The fiber in this veggie can reduce constipation symptoms and ensure your stool passes smoothly.
24. Coconut Water
Coconut water can work wonders on your bowels as it is one of the best natural laxatives. It offers a natural hydration boost, and given it has a high electrolyte content, it can ease constipation symptoms.
Corn is one superb source of insoluble fiber, the type of fiber your body cannot digest. This fiber acts like a scrub brush and sweeps your colon clean. This can make you poop.
We would have dealt with enough shit in our lives. So let’s get comfortable talking about it as well. Because, as we said, it’s important.
Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions
Does magnesium make you poop?
Yes, magnesium helps you poop. As already discussed, the mineral helps the colon contract and aids the excretion process.
How much fiber do I need to poop regularly?
The RDA of fiber is 35 grams for men and 25 grams for women (between the ages of 18 and 50 years). Beyond that, it is 21 grams per day for women and the same for men. Meeting the RDA of fiber can help ensure better colon health.
What foods to consume for solid stools?
Bananas, applesauce, rice, and toast are some of the stool-firming foods.
Any natural laxative foods?
Most of the foods you saw above are good laxatives. Some other natural laxative foods include chia seeds, flaxseeds, and aloe vera.
Does protein make you poop?
Excess protein can cause constipation as more water is needed to digest the protein. Protein is key, but don’t take it in excess.
Does pooping make you lose weight?
Though the connection is weak, eating high-fiber foods can promote regularity – and this can help you lose weight as well.
- “Mechanism of action of dietary…”. US National Library of Medicine.
- “Clinical benefits after soluble…”. US National Library of Medicine.
- “The effect of warm water…”. US National Library of Medicine.
- “Diets for constipation”. US National Library of Medicine.
- “The effects of fiber…”. US National Library of Medicine.
- “Grape”. WebMD.
- “The effect of probiotics…”. US National Library of Medicine.
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