Constipation is majorly a result of the kind of foods you are eating! Here’s a list of some of the worst foods that can cause constipation.

Constipation causes symptoms such as decreased bowel movement, bloating, gas, and stomach pains. No matter how much time you spend in the restroom or how much water you drink, you will not be able to resolve the problem if you continue to eat foods that cause constipation. If you have been wondering what it is you are eating that is causing the problem, we are here to help! Go through the list of the worst foods that cause constipation and which foods you can eat to prevent it.

What are the symptoms of constipation?

Constipation is a common digestive problem characterised by irregular bowel motions and trouble passing stool. Although constipation symptoms differ from person to person, there are certain symptoms that may be common. As per a 2018 study published in Missouri Medicine Journal, these are the common symptoms of constipation:

  • having trouble passing stool
  • lumpy or firm stool
  • pain or straining when removing waste
  • less than 3 bowel motions per week and feeling full
  • rectal bleeding
  • discomfort in the lower back

Also Read: Best drinks to poop fast: 7 juices to get relief from constipation

constipation after pregnancy
Eating unhealthy foods can cause constipation. Image courtesy: AdobeStock

What is the role of diet in digestion?

Diet is a major factor in your overall health, particularly in relation to your digestive system. Do you enjoy eating junk food? Well, it might give you momentary satisfaction but it can lead to problems such as constipation. Your body finds it more difficult to process junk food. It is important to make better food choices. What you eat is a very important factor in your digestive health, according to a study published in Science Direct Journal. So, eat a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables that provide the fibre needed to build good bacteria and guard gut health.

7 worst foods that cause constipation

Here are some foods that can cause constipation that must be avoided:

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1. Milk chocolate

If you have a sweet tooth and often consume chocolate, stop immediately because consuming milk chocolate can be the main cause of constipation. Chocolate is high in fat, which delays digestion and the flow of food through the digestive tract, resulting in constipation. While eating cocoa beans with husks reduces the risk of constipation, eating too many chocolates or chocolate-related goods can lead to constipation, found a study published in the European Journal of Gastrointestinal.

2. Caffeine

Who doesn’t enjoy the aroma of freshly made tea or coffee? Aromatic and calming! However, the truth is that coffee leads to constipation. “Caffeine-containing beverages such as energy drinks, black coffee, decaf coffee, tea, tea with cream, hot chocolate, soda, and so on are strictly off-limits to you. Caffeine tends to draw water from the colon when consumed in excess. However, if you consume caffeine in a limited amount it can stimulate bowel movement,” says gastroenterologist Dr Sushrut Singh.

3. Processed and frozen foods

While processed and frozen foods might be more convenient, they are unhealthy in every aspect. Foods with added flavour and colour, high sodium or sugar content, and preservative-laden including salami, sausage, frozen meals, and ready-to-eat foods should be avoided. The digestive system has to work harder to break down all of these complicated and artificial ingredients. Constipation is one of the many digestive issues that result from this weakening of the digestive system, found a study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

4. Red meat

According to a study published in American Journal, red meat has tough-to-digest protein fibres, is high in fat and iron, and can make you feel constipated when you eat a high-protein diet rich in it. Therefore, it is better to stay away from eating red meat, such as lamb, mutton, and pork.

5. Crackers

A cracker is a baked flour-based flat biscuit. While it may appear to be the ideal snack, it might cause constipation. Any biscuit made with baking flour slows bowel movement. Therefore, refrain from eating these if you’re constipated.

6. Gluten

Gluten is a protein that binds together wheat, semolina, rye, and barley. It holds the food together and gives it shape. However, most people have gluten sensitivity and may get constipation. Constipation is not a common symptom of gluten sensitivity, but people with celiac disease should stay away from all gluten-containing foods, according to a study published in StatPearls Journal.

7. Fried or fast food

Fried and fast foods are the primary causes of numerous health problems, including obesity and heart disease. The high sodium and artificial food additive content of these foods tends to slow down the food’s passage through the colon, which might cause constipation. Eating fast food or fried meals even once a day can increase the risk of constipation as well as numerous other health problems.

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Best foods to avoid constipation

If you are suffering from constipation, try eating these foods to get instant relief from constipation.

1. Papaya

This tropical fruit with a bright orange colour is high in dietary fibre and the digestive enzyme papain. Papain aids in the process of digestion, while dietary fibre promotes healthy peristaltic movement of the gastrointestinal system, which eases constipation, according to a study published in journal Nutrients.

2. Berries

Strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries are among the berries that are rich in soluble and insoluble dietary fibre, which promotes peristaltic movement (the process of moving food through the digestive tract). They also include a good amount of minerals and vitamins. Constipation can be avoided by consuming a cup of mixed berries daily, as per a study published in Biofactor Journal.

3. Kiwi

This delightful green, sweet, and sour fruit tastes great and aids digestion, absorption, and elimination. Kiwi has a colon-stimulating effect and is rich in dietary fibre. People with gastrointestinal issues, irritable bowel syndrome, and constipation can benefit from them, according to a study published in Springer Journal.

health benefits of kiwi
Eating kiwi may help relieve constipation symptoms. Image courtesy: Adobe stock

4. Flaxseed

Flaxseeds are believed to help with weight loss since they are an excellent source of healthy fats. Their high fibre content stimulates bowel movements, which helps with digestion and prevents constipation, which is one of the reasons they aid in fat loss, states a study published in the Journal of Food Science and Technology.

5. Broccoli

Broccoli eliminates weight gain, constipation, and other health-related problems. All you need is a cup of blanched broccoli together with other foods and vegetables that stimulate the colon.

Also Read: How to get instant relief from constipation: 8 solutions to your poop problem

Take care of your digestive health by eating the right foods and avoid the worst foods that cause constipation!

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