Paleo and Constipation
Most of us have no problem asking our doctors about allergy symptoms or skin problems. However, many people are too shy to tell their doctor that they are having problems with their bowel movements. This is something that nobody should be ashamed to discuss especially with a professional or health care provider.
However, if you are among those Paleo newbies who is experiencing constipation, the following information will prove to be very helpful for you.
Coping with the Transition Period
For many Paleo dieters, constipation may be a part of the transition period from the usual modern diet to Paleo foods. During the early stages of your Paleo diet, you may find your body beginning to experience some changes as it undergoes plenty of adjustments. Generally, most Paleo dieters may notice their bowel movements becoming smaller than before. This is perfectly normal as the Paleo diet is calorie and nutrient dense and this is the reason why the volume of your food consumption will become smaller.
These changes should not lead you to thinking that Paleo is unhealthy or give any reason to abandon the diet. The initial adaptation period may bring you some discomforts and constipation is one of them. Some Paleo dieters have successfully used a natural bulking laxative to help them get through the transition period with more ease.
Increasing Your Carbohydrate Intake
If you have been on a Paleo diet for several months and your body is still having a hard time adjusting, then it is time that you check your macronutrient intake. Some people who have adopted a very low-carb diet were found to have more serious issues of constipation. If you have no problems with not eating any starchy foods, then there is no reason to change your diet.
However, if you often have bowel problems then you may try increasing your carbohydrate intake. Ideally, opt for Paleo type carbs such as plantain, cassava, taro roots, yam, white and sweet potatoes.
Probably the most common culprit for constipation is dehydration. Your body prioritizes its water usage and softening stools for excretion is down the list. If you are not drinking enough water regularly during the day, then chances are your body will have the tendency to cling on to each drop of water because it badly needs fluid for things like maintaining blood volume and brain function.
If your body does not have enough water to be able to carry out less critical but still essential functions such as excretion, you will more be likely to experience difficulty and pain from constipation.
Constipation may be caused by many factors which may differ from one person to another but upping your water intake will definitely be the best, easiest and most non-invasive remedy for constipation.
Knowing the Cause
If it is your new Paleo diet that is the cause, the above steps will prove helpful. If it could be something else, one of the best ways to deal with constipation is to first find out the root cause. Instead of just buying several products from the store that promise to help you solve your “digestive problems”, you should first consult your doctor. This way, you will be able to have yourself completely checked for any possibilities of thyroid problems, gut flora dysbiosis and any other health issues that could be the culprit for your constipation.