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Dietary Changes to Cure Hard Stools

Hard stools or constipation is one of the most common gastrointestinal problems in the world. It involves a decrease in the frequency of bowel movements or difficulty in passing stools. The most common symptoms of hard stools involve infrequent bowel movement, passing hard stools after excessive pressure, lower abdominal pain and gas and bloating.

Dietary Changes for Hard Stools
Hard Stools can be prevented by simple dietary and lifestyle changes. Improper dietary habits and unbalanced diet can be a major cause of hard stools. Mostly, people get relieved by modifying their diet and do not require any medical assistance.

Foods to be Avoided to Prevent Hard Stool
Specific dietary habits and foods lead to production of hard stools. People suffering from chronic constipation may develop bleeding hemorrhoids in their anus and rectum. By avoiding certain food items, production of hard stools can be prevented. These include:

  • Consuming low-fiber diet such as white bread, white rice, pasta, meat, eggs, canned fruits and canned vegetables and fruits without pulp.
  • Fatty foods harden the stool. Fatty food move slowly in the bowel and allow re-absorption of water from the stool and they become harder. Fatty foods include such as whole milk, ice cream, whole-fat yogurt, French fries, butter and salad dressings. 
  • Processed foods contain less amount of fiber. You should limit consumption of processed food such as crackers, prepackaged meals, cakes and donuts.

Reduce consumption of alcohol and caffeinated beverages such as tea, coffee and cola drinks. It is fruitful to a have an extra glass of water than tea, coffee or alcoholic drink. If hard stool continues for a longer time, it can also result in seepage of blood in stool.

Dietary Modifications
You should consume 20-35 grams of fiber daily in your diet. It helps in the formation of soft and bulky stool. Fiber is made by plants and is not digested by the human digestive system. Different types of fibers within the intestine bind to water and keep the water in the intestine. It adds bulk to the stool and the water softens its.

The most common fiber rich foods include:

  • Fruits such as apple peal, dates, papaya, mangos, oranges, pears, kiwis, strawberries, raisins contain moderate amount of fiber. Fruits containing high amount of fiber include cooked prunes and dried figs. 
  • Vegetables such as beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, corn, green beans, green peas, spinach, potato and avocado can be consumed.
  • Bread such as whole wheat bread, granola bread, wheat bran muffins and popcorn caontain moderate fiber.
  • Cereal such as bran flakes, raisin bran, shredded wheat, oatmeal, muslix, oat bran contain moderate amount of fiber. Cereals rich in fiber such as all-bran, bran bud, corn bran and fiber one. 
  • Meat substitutes such as peanut butter and nuts can also be eaten.

Patients suffering from chronic constipation can take any of these fiber supplements:

  • Psyllium seed such as Metamucil
  • Synthetic Methylcellulose such as Citrucel
  • Polycarbophil or polycarbophil along with calcium
  • Maltsupex is an extract of fiber, which softens the stool in other ways than by increasing fiber content.

There are two types of fibers: Soluble and insoluble fibers.

Soluble fibers soak up the moisture in food products and allow slow digestion. It allows a regular bowel movement for an individual. Foods rich in soluble fiber include:

  • Oranges
  • Apples
  • Carrot
  • Oatmeal
  • Flax seed

Insoluble fibers add bulk to your stool. It helps in relieving constipation if consumed along with sufficient amount of water. Insoluble fibers also help in removal of toxins from your body.

Excessive fiber consumption in the diet can lead to increased gas production. This occurs due to digestion of fiber by gut bacteria. Gas is produced as a byproduct during digestion. Different fiber sources produce varying amount of gas upon their digestion.

Along with consumption of high fiber diet, you should drink lots of water. Water prevents hardening of fiber and its blockage in the intestine. This prevents build up of fiber in the digestive tract and allows its easy removal from the body.

Consumption of a specific fiber source depends upon your medical condition. Example: people who have narrowed colons due to adhesions or strictures should consult a doctor before making any dietary changes and diabetic patients should consume less-sugar containing fiber sources or sugar-free fiber supplements.

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Mohd Salman, is a senior microbiologist and is associated with DiseaseFix as a researcher. DiseaseFix develops health information modules for patients and provides a unique platform to allow access of reliable information of a variety of types for diseases.



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