Health and MedicineDiseasesConstipation: symptoms, causes, complications and treatment

Constipation: symptoms, causes, complications and treatment

Constipation is a problem that increasingly affects many people. Untreated it can cause serious health problems, as well as discomfort and other related symptoms.

More and more people suffer from constipation, a problem that is increasing, the result to a greater extent of the current society in which we live, where we must run from one place to another and to which we also have to add problems such as anxiety and stress.

Put simply and directly, constipation is the retention of stool, beyond the physiological time for evacuation, which tends to be up to 48 hours, or at least three times a week.

And it is that a common custom in many people is that they tend to leave in a hurry with little time to eat breakfast, in such a way that they avoid not only one of the most important meals of the day, but the obvious passage through the bathroom.

This comes to mean that we repress the gastro colic reflex, which is a stimulus for the correct and good intestinal function, as well as the optimal elimination of the different and diverse toxic residues of the organism that tend to take place during the morning.

But what are the main causes of constipation? And the different consequences? What foods should we avoid if we suffer from constipation? Can intestinal transit be regulated through food?

What is constipation? How to know if you suffer

It is often thought that constipation only exists when the person goes to the bathroom little, so that several days may go by without the person visiting the toilet bowl to make larger waters. But did you know that it is actually a mistake?

That is, for there to be constipation it is not only necessary to go to the bathroom little (registering less than three stools per week); It can also exist when these stools are hard, small – in the form of balls – and dry, painful or difficult to evacuate.

These discomforts are usually accompanied by other related symptoms, such as a feeling of fullness and continuous abdominal swelling that only disappears when you evacuate, although in many cases it is also usually felt between the chest and hips.

Therefore, we can say that there is constipation when:

  • There are fewer than three bowel movements per week.
  • Stools are dry, hard, and small. In addition, they are often difficult to evacuate and / or painful.

This means that you may be constipated even though you go to the bathroom every day, but it actually hurts or has a hard time having a normal bowel movement. When this happens, it is usually due precisely to the fact that the stools are hard and dry.

In fact, the person who actually suffers from constipation may have all or only one of the characteristics listed above.

It is estimated that, in a generally healthy person without notable health problems, the normal frequency of stools is between 3 a day to 3 a week, which tend to be expelled without difficulty in 75% of cases. In addition, so that there is no constipation, it is important that the evacuation is painless, complete and does not require excessive effort.

We must be clear that most people suffer from constipation at some point in their lives.  And it is that, in general, the most common thing is that it lasts only a short period of time, at the same time that in most cases it is not usually dangerous.

However, when the cause of constipation is known, it is possible to follow some guidelines and recommendations to help alleviate it, as I indicated in the note on how to improve your intestinal transit.

Main causes of constipation

As you may have surely guessed, among the main causes of constipation we find:

  • Stress.
  • Eating quickly, without chewing properly, or even eating standing up.
  • Eat a fiber-free or low-fiber diet.
  • The sedentary lifestyle.
  • Dehydration or ingesting less than 2 liters of water a day.
  • Eat only 1 or 2 meals a day, when it is recommended 5.
  • Abusing laxatives, which tend to disturb the physiological normality of the intestine?

What are the symptoms of constipation?

Precisely for these causes, constipation appears and in turn different consequences that have a direct impact on the body itself:

  • Stools are dry, hard, and small
  • Feeling of heaviness and swelling
  • Accumulation of toxins, which are –as you know- waste generated by our body.
  • Irritability and bad mood.
  • Formation of diverticula.

How to treat constipation and useful tips to help improve your transit:

There are times when you have to go to laxatives to try to solve bouts of constipation as much as possible. Once you have consulted your doctor and have ruled out any organic problem, perhaps you should consider yourself before resorting to these remedies if foods that could help you correct the problem are present in your diet.

Recommended dietary tips

Foods rich in fiber must be taken daily; it is not worth just resorting to them when you go through a bad streak when it comes to going to the bathroom.

What foods are ideal to improve intestinal transit?

It is important that the following foods are not lacking in the diet: vegetables, cereals of all kinds but better that they are whole, liquids at least two liters per day (water, natural juices, infusions), all fruits contain fiber and It is advisable to eat them with their skin on and well washed. Nuts are also rich in fiber, prunes, dried apricots, all kinds of legumes.

Other useful tips

Daily physical activity is also important, this will help to move the intestine since in cases of constipation, and sedentary lifestyle does not help at all when it comes to improving symptoms.

In addition, it is useful and essential to live as relaxed as possible, since both stress and anxiety negatively influence our intestinal transit. A good example is the rhythm of life that we follow from day to day, which we can live in constant chronic anxiety without realizing it.

The key? Eat healthy and healthy, following a balanced diet rich in fresh vegetables and fruits, practicing regular physical exercise, and living as relaxed and as happy as possible.

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