Constipation

stomach crampConstipation during pregnancy affects more than half of all expecting women. Pregnancy releases hormones, which relax the muscles surrounding the gastrointestinal tract, which in turn slows down the passage of food through your digestive system.

In addition, the iron supplements you take to enrich your blood supply can cause constipation or worsen existing constipation. During pregnancy, your body requires more fluids; low fluid intake will also lead to constipation. Later in the pregnancy, the growing size of the fetus crowds your bowels and narrows your intestinal passageways. Nausea from pregnancy may also prevent you from consuming adequate amounts of dietary fiber, which is essential for regularity.

Avoid excess cheese, meat, and other foods containing hard fats. Especially avoid bacon and sausage. Also, avoid over-the-counter laxatives as well as herbal remedies such as senna, aloe, and castor oil.

To combat constipation you should exercise regularly, drink plenty of water, and eat lots of fibrous foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grain cereals, and breads.

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Constipation

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31 comments

  1. Carrie says:

    I guess that i am one of the lucky few i haven’t had a problem with constipation.

  2. Krystal says:

    Eight full glasses of fluids (water, vegetable or fruit juice, broth, etc.) each day will keep solids moving through your digestive tract at an impressive rate and keep your stool soft (and easier to pass). That geriatric favorite, prune juice, is tops in the category, since it’s a mild laxative. Try to drink some when you’re really clogged, and if you have trouble (at least this far out of the retirement home) taking it straight, blend it with other fruits and juices into a smoothie. Another time-honored way to get things moving: Turn to warm liquids, including that health spa staple, hot water and lemon. They’ll help stimulate peristalsis, those intestinal contractions that help you go.

    Fiber-rich foods (aka roughage) will help you eliminate waste — it’s that simple. Eat whole-grains, fresh or dried fruits, vegetables, beans, and peas. Going for the green can also help you go — not only in the form of green vegetables, but in a juicy, sweet kiwi, a tiny fruit that packs a potent laxative effect. Aim for 25 to 35 grams of fiber each day (you can read food labels if you want, but there’s no need to do the math — just choose lots of high fiber foods). Ease into this if you’re not used to a lot of fiber in your diet already as fiber an immediate increase in fiber so quickly can make you extremely drowsy! Be sure to shun those classic cloggers, refined grains (white bread, white rice, refined cereals and pasta).

    Many of the supplements that do a pregnant body good (prenatal vitamins, calcium, and iron supplements) can also contribute to constipation. Ditto every pregnant woman’s best buddy, antacids. So try possible alternatives or adjustments in dosages, or in the case of supplements, switching to a slow-release formula.

  3. My doctor and other fellow mommies have said lots of fluids is needed not even the fact for constipation but yet in general… to keep your self hydrated… one tip I learned in high school for track is if your urine is yellow, that means your dehydrated. Prune juice works for me, water, fruits and dark greeny veggies, whole grains, cereal with fiber, and even bananas are a natural way to get your bowels moving. Walking and cleaning can help too 🙂

  4. Heatherly says:

    I was told to hold off on breads and wheat gluten if you have constipation. I’m drinking tons of fluids and hoping this will end soon!!

  5. Marilyn says:

    Constipation is the worst!

  6. Marina says:

    Before pregnancy I was always regular with no issues. This is really terrible even though I go on daily basis it is definitely not as before. I try to drink water but, due to still having terrible nausea at almost 30 wks. it is really difficult.

  7. monette3 says:

    I need to drink more water. For some reason I’m finding it really difficult, and am drinking less water than before I was pregnant, instead of the extra water that my body needs.

  8. MamaCat says:

    It comes and goes – along with the gas pains.

  9. Jasmine says:

    37 weeks … and luckily no issues yet … this was a concern from the begining due to stories of other mothers … so i took extra care

  10. verochka31 says:

    Mira Lax is good and safe, just ask your obgyn if its good for you. I have to take a stool softener bacause I am also on an iron supplement twice a day………………..helps a lot. eating prunes works as well and bran muffins…………

  11. Sara says:

    I had severe constipation, then I started taking Walgreens’ Fiber Lax, and I eat more whole grain and fiber, but taking Fiber Lax twice a day has definitely saved me 🙂

  12. Toshie85 says:

    It’s a horrible feeling! I ended up getting my appendix removed due to severe constipation

  13. maddy says:

    I am 37 weeks and have had a problems with constipation the whole pregnancy. During the 2nd trimester I had to be admitted for severe impact-ion which was very painful. Now I can’t have a bowel movement on my own, maybe once a month. Its gross but i have had to digitally remove the stool myself. I am now bleeling from the rectum. I am experiencing alot of blood loss and have blood clots with a BM. Causing my already low hemoglobin to drop further. The baby’s heart rate is low and the think he isn’t getting the proper nutrition, they were going to take him out yesterday and now want to wait! Any advice or similar experience?

    • misty says:

      I am only eight weeks but I am having very similar experiences with my bm’s. Severe constipation leading to manual removal which I know is gross but sometimes is the only way and upon the end bleeding from my rectum as well. it oys a great concern for me as well, especially so early along. i am afraid all the straining can cause me to lose my baby.i am going to try the prunes and kiwis before it gets much worse. i hope you are doing better and your baby as well

  14. ketta says:

    i have had problem with constipation

  15. Jeanetta says:

    I haven’t had a real problem with constipation…yet.

  16. Julie says:

    Keep the fiber intake up. I like Honey Bunches of Oats..

  17. Yelena says:

    Lots of fruits and vegetables ladies!!!

  18. McKenzie says:

    Yeah coffee and spicy foods usually do it for me.

  19. SammysMOMMY says:

    sounds like you aren’t gaining baby weight?

  20. SammysMOMMY says:

    Either coffee or prune juice helps me go!

  21. SammysMOMMY says:

    Coffee helps me!

  22. Lauren23 says:

    thats great i will have to try that. I love watermelon so it wont be hard to eat it alot.

  23. Raven says:

    This is not healthy by any means but i can eat a small bag of flamin hot cheetos and it helps me go within a few hours!! Whatever helps I guess lol

    • cindy says:

      I know about this all to well. Constipation is no fun at all, but there are ways to combat it. Lots and lots of water, prunes and prune juice really works well. Eating plenty of fruits that have the skin and vegetables. This to will pass.

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