by Sam Samalin, PA-C
Nothing can cause patients to want to excitedly run from the clinic like telling them the magic secret to once and for all ending their lifelong misery from constipation. First of all, make high fiber food choices: beans and nuts, dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale, fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains like oatmeal. Properly cooked beans cause very little gas. Constipation can cause gas, so eating high fiber foods on a regular basis relieves gas. Get enough fluids and exercise. Avoid low fiber choices such as white bread, meats, white rice, packaged foods, pizza, french fries, cheese and restaurants. And here’s the magic secret: there’s a super concentrated source of fiber: flax meal, ground flax seeds, sold in bags in the baking section of most grocery stores or health food stores. Take two inches of it stirred in water in a tall glass and that’s the daily recommend fiber amount, but no need to stop there, it’s a good food so feel free to drink down 4-8 or more inches a day. That way you will be getting enough fiber in your diet and in most cases will have regular bowel movements. Constipation is a serious health problem so stop by the clinic if you have it. There are many things to consider such as needing a colonoscopy, emergency blockages, and bowel diseases such as colitis. Chances are though you will be excited to get to your new un-constipated future before the visit is over. .