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Constipation is a digestive problem that makes you spend hours in the toilet. But how to deal with this condition just by using homemade laxative?
After reading this article, you will know some strongest laxative foods and drinks that available in your kitchen.
Normal work of the digestive system
Before finding out the importance of some strong laxatives, you need to know the function of our digestive tract.
The oral cavity and the stomach take responsibility of breaking large molecules of food into smaller ones. While the small intestine absorbs almost nutrients and delivers them to the bloodstream, the remaining parts of the food are moved to the large intestine through bowel movement.
There, the colon forms the stool from waste, electrolytes, unwanted nutrients, and water. This mixture becomes a solid matter that can pass quickly through the digestive system to reach the rectum, where it is ready to go out .
Why do we need the homemade laxative for constipation?
Due to many different reasons, constipation can occur anytime. The risk factors of this condition include lack of fiber intake, dehydration, stress, or lack of sleep. Millions of people over the world are dealing with problems of constipation.
This status is caused by fewer bowel movements than normal, which happens to almost everyone. The length of bowel movements are different between people: some have three times per day while others have once or twice a week. If there is no contraction of the intestine muscles within three days, the stool will become harder and impossible to pass through .
The severity of constipation increases over time. Typically, you know that you are constipated by noticing these signs and symptoms:
- Fewer bowel movements
- Straining while having bowel movements
- Tough and small stools that are difficult to pass
- Bleeding anal tissues while defecating
- Cramping abdomen
Although this condition is not usually serious, it still can lead to some complications, such as hemorrhoids or fecal impaction. These diseases require longer treatment period and adversely affect the patient’s quality of life.
That is why we need to use prescribed and home laxative to get over constipation.
Quick laxatives solutions
Another name of laxative is purgative. Constipated patients use laxatives to improve bowel movements or soften the stool. It is also prescribed before colonoscopy or anal surgery to empty the stool matter.
Many forms of laxatives can be inserted into our body: pills, tablets, liquids, ointments, and enemas. Each of them has their own beneficial and adverse effects. Depends on the particular cases and the purposes of treatment, your doctor will indicate the most suitable one for you. In some cases, you will need more than one type of laxative at home.
However, you need to be aware of the real benefits of laxatives. They will not solve any problems from the roots but help ease the symptoms of constipation. If you have found out the underlying condition of the digestive tract, it is better to follow the specific treatment.
Is laxative dangerous?
Before using any types of laxatives, it is essential to be aware of the potential risks of the drug. In fact, laxative abuse is increasing over time.
People are overusing this “panacea,” but they do not notice the hidden dangers behind it.
Most people do not know that prolonged use of stimulant laxatives is a potential risk of “laxative dependency” – which weaken the body’s natural desire to defecate. In this cases, the haustral folds of the colon are severely damaged and unable to move the fecal matter on their own. Among chronic constipation, 28% reported of losing haustral folds within one year of using stimulant laxatives .
Meanwhile, bulking agents may cause abdominal cramping, bloating, or gas. This condition usually happens whenever you increase the dietary fiber intake suddenly. Bulking laxatives also reduce the body’s ability to absorb some particular drugs – that is why it can not be used with another medication at the same time.
The side effect of lubricant laxatives is decreasing the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and minerals from the intestine. Besides, similar to bulking agents, the mineral oil also intervenes the dilution of some medications and supplements into the digestive system.
Other acquired problems while using laxatives may include:
- Electrolyte imbalances
- Lack of digestive enzymes
- Tired or headaches
- Damaged digestive tissues
- Alternative diarrhea
- Life threatening side effects
Fastest acting household laxatives
While there are several health issues related to laxatives may occur, we can use home remedy laxative to get over constipation. Knowing how your body organs works will improve your health noticeably.
Your diet plays a vital role in the digestive tract in particular, and in the whole body in general. The toxin level will increase if there is a lack of water and nutrient intake because the function of the main detoxifying organs (the liver and kidney) is slowing down. If we provide proper nutrients and hydrating fluids, our body will activate the systematic responses to clean and detox on their own.
Instead of relying on laxatives pills and capsules, it is better to build up a healthy diet with fiber and stay away from junk foods such as snack or sweets. It may take time for your body to get used to the changes in your diet because this is a long-term strategy.
The recommended amount of fiber that our body needs per day are 25-40 grams, and even more in men or bigger people. It is better to get fiber from natural foods instead of artificial ones.
You should pay more attention to the high fiber intake from vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Besides, nuts and legumes are the important sources of not just fiber but electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals.
One important thing about natural laxatives: you need to find the most suitable food type, as each is different. If you are allergic to any kind of carbohydrates, do not try them even they are super laxatives for someone else. In opposed, it may cause constipation issues or irritated bowel syndrome (IBS).
Five most powerful laxatives foods
Before seeking any over-the-counter drugs, please keep in mind that there are lots of quick acting laxatives that available in your kitchen. Here are some suggestions:
People collect this edible seed from a desert plant that grows in Mexico. Our body can absorb the whole nutrients from unprocessed chia seeds instantly. One tablespoon of this seed contains about 70 calories, 2 grams protein, 4.5 grams fat, 6 grams of carbohydrates, 5.5 grams of fiber, and high amount of vitamins and minerals .
As you can see, chia seeds are an excellent source of fiber intake. More than that, the gel-coat of the seed when expanded in water will add bulk to the stool. Plus with stimulating bowel movements, chia seeds is the fastest laxative for constipation.
Eating one tablespoon of chia seed will provide 19% of recommended fiber per day. There are many ways for you to use this “all natural laxative“:
- Sprinkle them on any type of salad
- Eat them with your bread crumbs
- Put them in yogurt, smoothies, or milk
- Add them to any dishes and cake
- Smash them into a sauce and put in the dough before baking
Ancient Indian have used this succulent plan to cure constipation for centuries. Based on the results of many studies, scientists believe that Aloe Vera should be used as a second-line agent in the treatment of chronic constipation .
It contains the clear gel and latex substance that work as lubricant laxative foods in the intestinal tube. The gel is a jelly-like matter which fills within the space of the leaf, while the latex is found under the plant’s skin.
There are different forms of Aloe Vera for you to use: juice, gel, and capsules. You can take up to 1 gram of Aloe Vera capsule as natural laxatives for adults. The recipe of Aloe Vera juice is mentioned in part “DIY laxative” below.
However, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some of the over-the-counter stimulant laxatives that contain Aloe Vera is unsafe. Thus, you should ask your doctor for advice before using Aloe products .
Flaxseed or linseed is a sesame-size seed collected from the flax plant. It contains a high source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, lots of vitamins and mineral. The mucilage compound in the seed covers the stool and the bowel lining with a slippery surface. That is why flaxseed benefit is similar to the lubricant laxative .
One thing to remember while using flaxseeds to release the most powerful laxatives effects: you have to crush or grind the seed before eating. A thick coat covers the strongest elements, so it will not work unless broken.
Similar to chia seeds, you can use flaxseeds in a variety of dishes. But make sure that you consume plenty of water too, or the fiber in the seed may be stuck inside your bowel and cause constipation.
If you want to know the simplest home remedies for the bowel movement, the answer is leafy green vegetables. Broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, and cabbage are the most effective ingredients as they contain a high amount of fiber and magnesium.
Magnesium helps draw the water from the large intestine and soften the stool, which makes it easier to pass through. Besides, this electrolyte help relaxes the muscles of the whole body, including abdominal muscles. Consuming more green vegetables will stop the cramping stomach and prevent constipation.
Yogurt provides the good bacteria inside the intestine system and helps balance the microbiological environment there. Therefore, your healthy digestive tract is no longer affected by constipation or diarrhea.
Yogurt is not the only food that contains probiotics agents: you can eat kimchi, kombucha, or kefir instead. Those fast acting laxatives are the ultimate choice as they are available at the supermarket with a reasonable price.
Best laxative drinks
This is an alternative drink of plain water. Coconut water is not just tasty with a touch of sweet flavor, it also balances the electrolyte of the body and prevents dehydration. A one-cup serving of coconut water provides 16 times more of potassium level than Gatorade with the equivalent amount .
However, drinking too much coconut water may result in loose stool, which is not a comfortable experience for you. You should limit the amount of this water under four glasses per day to prevent unwanted side effects.
Herbal laxatives tea
Most people choose herbal teas for relaxing and soothing purposes, but the laxative properties are not very common. However, some special ingredients should be highlighted in your favorite-tea-list to deal with constipation. Cascara and Senna herbs are potential laxative drinks that you absolutely want to try.
Both herbal teas above help reabsorb the water in the colon and keep the stools moisturized. Cascara and Senna teas are two of the best home remedies for the bowel movement. Combined with the water you drink while enjoying the tea, they help you acquire the daily fluid recommended.
Senna is one of the best laxative teas, although it may have a bitter flavor. Thus you should add 1-2 teaspoon of honey or sugar into it. The lowest dose of this herbal tea is the better, or some possible adverse effects can appear. If you overuse this herb, it could lead to dehydrated body and electrolyte disorder.
About Cascara, you should not misunderstand this herb with the peel of coffee cherry blossoms – which also called Cascara. The full name of the herb is Cascara Sagrada. As it improves the bowel movements, Cascara is the primary ingredient in many over-the-counter laxative herb teas. However, doctors recommend using this drinkable laxative for no longer than two weeks, or it may cause abdominal cramps and dependency.
If you can not find both of these ingredients in the store, there are still other options for herbal laxatives tea, such as peppermint or black tea.
Fastest acting laxative fruits
The list of fruits that cure constipation is endless, but we will introduce ten best ones that have great taste and easy to find.
Bananas. The fiber consumption in bananas will add bulk to the stool and promote the digestive process. Moreover, potassium element helps regain valuable electrolytes to your body.
Avocados. The fat content in avocados makes them become a unique fruit among all species. People eat avocados for cholesterol lowering and laxative purposes. Due to the high fiber amount (200 grams of avocados contain 14 grams of fiber), your defecation is much easier than before.
Prunes. Both soluble and insoluble fiber are available in prunes, the consumption is equal to avocados. Besides, this homemade laxative contains a large amount of sorbitol, which absorbs water inside the colon.
Apples. “One apple a day keeps the diseases away.” The fiber content in apples is called pectin. There are three grams of fiber in a medium-sized apple, plus with numerous of vitamins and minerals.
Pears. This type of fruits is famous not just for its lightly sweet flavor but the fiber content. 180 grams of pear (equivalent to one medium-sized fruit) has 6 grams of fiber, including the peel. You should eat the whole pear without peeling the skin to get the best result.
Blackberries. In opposed to the low-calorie aspect, blackberries if full of rich nutrients and fiber. The extraordinary element in this fruit is Xylitol – which contributes to the sweet taste and laxative effect.
Blueberries. This tiny fruit brings up many health benefits, including laxative perspective. One cup of blueberries brings up 4 grams of fiber and 80 calories. However, the fiber consumption in this fruit is less than blackberries with the same portion.
Melon. It contains high liquid-content along with soluble fiber. With 1.4 grams of fiber per cup combined with water, it helps soften the stool as well as improve the intestine function.
Pineapples. People consider pineapples as the King of fruits, due to their rich nutrients and health benefits. It should be on your list of natural homemade laxative to deal with constipation.
Apricots. Last but not least, apricots contain a noticeable source of fiber. You should eat the whole one, or eat dried apricots to get the best result.
With the list of proper laxatives food above, it is much easier for you to prepare a meal using some of those ingredients. But how to combine them in the most effective way and still keep the original flavor? Or how to make laxative at home? We will give you some greatest and easiest recipes.
- 1 liter of cow milk
- 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoon of yogurt (at room temperature)
- Fruits (up to your choice: blackberries, blue berries, pears, and bananas)
- Start by heating the milk to 85°C. Pay attention to the pot and stir it thoroughly to prevent the milk from burning.
- Then let the milk cool down to 43°C before adding two tablespoons of existing yogurt. Stir the mixture well, then put it into an air-free container.
- Store the mixture in a warm place (about 38°C) and let it firm for at least seven hours.
- The yogurt is ready, and now you can add chopped fruits and enjoy your delicious homemade laxative.
- The remaining yogurt can be used as the starter to cultivate bacteria in the next time.
Aloe Vera juice
- 1 large Aloe Vera leaf
- 200 grams of rock sugar
- 10 grams of salt
- A citrus (optional)
- Peel the rind of Aloe leaf using a sharp knife
- Remove the yellow layer beneath the rind (to avoid the bitter flavor)
- Chop the Aloe gel into small cubes
- Soak the gel in salted water for 15-20 minutes, then rinse thoroughly
- Put the Aloe gel into a blender and blend the mixture until it becomes smooth
- Add rock sugar into a pot of boiling water and wait until the rock is completely dissolved
- Remove the pot from heat, and put Aloe gel into the pot
- Let the juice cold down, add citrus juice and pour it into a bottle
- Keep the bottle in the fridge and enjoy.
Different types of laxative you should know
Besides those mentioned items, there are several kinds of laxative for you to choose. Each laxative has its working mechanisms: from stimulating muscles contraction to depositing saline fluid. Here is some information about over-the-counter and prescribed laxatives that are familiar to you :
This fast working laxative is also known as contact laxatives, which act on the digestive lining. The wall of the intestine consists of the mucosa, nerve plexus, and a thin layer of muscle. By working on these parts, stimulant laxatives accelerate muscle contractions along the stool matter, as well as improve stool’s hydration. The onset of action in the colon of this drug lasts for six to ten hours.
This is one of the strongest laxative and most overused either. Here are some common brands of stimulant laxatives: Correctol, Dulcolax, Ex-lax, and Senokot. However, using this kind of laxatives regularly is not recommended.
This drug provides fiber to your body, thus increases the water content and bulk of the feces. It is suitable with normal and slow-transit constipation as the stool mass can pass quickly through the colon. While using bulking agents, it is essential to drink enough water to avoid flatulence and potential obstruction.
Most doctors recommend using these fast acting laxatives first because it is one of the gentlest drugs. Constipated patients can take the bulking laxative for long-term treatment without serious side effects, except for bloating or gas. But if you are undertaken other medications at the same time, remember to take fiber at least two hours before (or one hour after) that.
Fiber is the main ingredients in many over-the-counter laxatives, such as Benefiber, Citrucel, Equilactin, and Fiber-lax. It is also available with a high amount of fruits, green leafy vegetables, and whole grains.
They are commonly known as emollient laxatives (includes Colace, Diocto, and Gibs-Eze). Homemade stool softener contains anionic surfactants (or docusate) that bring water and fats to the stool mass, make it easier to move through the colon tube. However, they do not stimulate the bowel movements but just allow the patients to have bowel movements without cramping.
It might take at least 72 hours or a week for any homemade stool softener to be efficient, so it is not suitable for chronic constipation. Doctors indicate these agents to prevent constipation and boost the intestinal function after surgery or giving birth.
In this article, you will know the greatest homemade stool softener that comes from nature.
As the name “lubricant” implies, this type of laxatives cover the stool with a thin layer of slippery lipids and prevent it from drying out. Meanwhile, the mineral oil also coats the intestinal lining, which facilitates the fecal movement.
Although it seems beneficial, these strong laxatives should be used as a short-term solution for constipation, as it may leave behind possible adverse effects.
These substances allow the intestine to hold more water by stimulating osmotic effect. By collecting fluid from surrounding tissues, the hard and dry stool becomes soft and able to pass through the colon.
There are two ways to take this type of laxatives: oral and rectal route. While it takes days for oral tablets to be active, a rectal enema can solve the problems in just 15 minutes. It is also the fastest laxative for constipation. However, some patients may suffer a local irritated colon after treating by enemas.
Here is the strongest and fastest homemade laxative you can use to deal with constipation problems. After reading this article, you have known to use some foods as the efficient household laxatives. Hope that this information is useful and fully provide what you are searching for.
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