Constipation is a condition that can easily creep up on you if you’re not paying attention, with many factors contributing to the problem. Constipation, that too in winters, that arises suddenly in a person who is otherwise not constipated is a dietary and/or lifestyle issue. Inadequate dietary fiber and insufficient fluid intake are the two main factors that contribute to constipation in many people.
Depending on the severity, constipation can cause problems like abdominal pain and gas. If left untreated then excessive straining during bowel movements may cause further related medical conditions like hemorrhoids (swollen anal veins), anal fissures (tears) and rectal prolapse, where part of the rectum sticks out through the anus.
Why is constipation more common in winters?
One of the key causes of constipation in winters is the decreased physical activity. The weather tends to make us lethargic and we end up leading a more sedentary lifestyle. This reduces the blood supply in the pelvic region and the muscles. Other causes could be –
- Less intake of water
- High caffeine in form of tea and coffee. They are diuretic and lead to more water loss and aggravate constipation
- High sugar intake
- Higher consumption of milk can also constipate some people
Dietary changes recommended to overcome constipation
- Start your day with some Luke warm water and honey, it acts as natural laxative
- Amla, is a wonderful fresh berry to improve your digestive system during winters. So, drink some vegetable juice with amla in it
- Eat more of greens and salads found in abundance in winters
- Try and steam your vegetables for consumption in case eating them raw is not preferred. For example – steamed beetroot is very good during the season
- Have herbal tea, turmeric milk or soups instead of coffee and tea
- Drink good amount of fluid
- Add winter grains like bajra, makki and ragi for right micronutrients, lots of fibre and good gut health
- Munch on more nuts and seeds like pumpkin, sunflower and flax, they are rich in fiber and are natural laxative too.
- Keep moving every 6 hours.
- One should try to do 50 sit-ups at home or any similar exercisein case they are not able to do any outside workout due to weather conditions.
Stress on physical activity
Constipation can be a very uncomfortable but making a few changes to your daily life and eating habits can help relieve the problem, even keep it away for good.