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Most of the people living in the city live a busy life, and often have an unbalanced diet and lack of exercise, which affects intestinal peristalsis. Elderly people tend to suffer more from constipation due to their reduced activities, decreased chewing and digestive abilities which might have led to less consumption of fruits, vegetables and water, and slower intestinal peristalsis.
Everyone's defecation habits are different. Varying from once a day to once every three days, these are considered as normal defecation habits. However, if the stool is too hard or having difficulty in defecating, then it can be regarded as constipation.
Constipation can cause abdominal pain, hemorrhoids, anal fissure, etc. People with high blood pressure when defecating too hard, their blood pressure will rise or even induce stroke. Suffering from constipation for a long time can also cause emotional distress, leading to depression.
Having good daily living habits can improve constipation. Those in need can make reference to the following suggestions:

Ways to improve constipation
  • Eat more food containing dietary fiber
Fiber may help to speed up the transport of food through the digestive tract, which is conducive to regular defecation. It is recommended that 25-30 grams of fiber can be obtained through food.
Sources of food which contains dietary fiber
Fruits and vegetables: 4-6 servings per day
Eat more crude fiber, green leafy vegetables, fruits, etc
Vegetables: cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, sweet potato, cabbage, kale, winter melon
Fruit: pitaya, kiwi, apple, pear, berry (strawberry, blueberry, blackberry), raisin
Whole wheat, beans: red rice, millet oats, oats, whole wheat flour, lentils, black beans, whole wheat bread.
  • Drink sufficient water
Sufficient water can promote intestinal absorption and soften stool, hence, make it easier to defecate. 6 to 8 cups of drinks is recommended daily, including water, tea, juice, soup, etc.
  • Do exercise regularly
Exercise is also good for improving constipation. Exercise can increase intestinal peristalsis.
  • Time of defecation
People are born with two "natural periods" of defecation: one is the "standing reflex" of getting up in the morning; the other is the "stomach colon reflex" after eating. When you wake up in the morning, from lying to sitting and then to standing, the intestinal peristalsis will increase, and a huge peristalsis wave will be generated in the intestinal tract to help you push your stool out. After breakfast, the gastrocolic reflex is obvious (the stomach will inform the large intestine to move quickly), creating another "natural time" for defecation. Therefore, arousing the natural defecation reflex can improve constipation.
  • Defecation habit
Develop good defecation habits, such as morning defecation, and avoid defecation while playing mobile phones to read newspapers. In addition, don't try to hold your stool when it comes. If you deliberately hold it back when it comes to you, it will also lead to functional constipation in the long run. Therefore, people who are prone to constipation should pay attention to avoid holding it back.
  • Use of drugs
There are many kinds of over-the-counter drugs that can improve constipation. Please consult your doctor about the appropriate drugs and dosage before use. If the constipation problem persists, please seek medical advice.

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