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  • Vikass Patil

Constipation In Weight Loss Diet

Constipation in a weight loss diet is very common even though your diet plan contains vegetables. Let's find out the reasons and remedies.


Constipation in a weight loss diet plan
Constipation in a weight loss diet plan

For many people, losing weight and reaching the desired weight is like a dream come true. Many types of weight loss programs are available. Some programs offer only diet plans, while others offer fitness programs. These are the non-surgical and natural programs that are always recommended. Each program requires dedication and has a few manageable associated problems. The most common problem associated with the healthy diet weight loss plan is constipation.


When you visit a doctor for constipation, your doctor suggests you consume more fiber, right? However, you are already following a healthy diet plan that contains fiber. In that case, why do you suffer from constipation? When you inform your doctor about this, he will ask you about your thyroid history. "Do you have a family member who suffers from hypothyroidism? Have you ever checked your thyroid hormones?" In the end, your doctor will advise you exercise.


However, your diet is the main cause of constipation. Yes, it is true. Even though you're following a healthy weight loss diet plan, something is missing from your diet that's causing constipation. We'll take a look at what is missing from your diet that causes constipation.


healthy fats


Fat is too low in your newly adopted healthy weight loss diet.

A healthy weight loss diet is often too low in fat. It contains white eggs instead of whole eggs, correct? But I would not blame it. Ultimately, this is a healthy weight loss diet that will result in weight loss. However, you may not be aware that fat stimulates colon motility, which promotes regular bowel movements. It is necessary to have regular bowel movements to prevent constipation.


The fat in food stimulates the gastrocolic reflex. As a result of this reflex, upper gastrointestinal organs like the stomach and small intestine alert lower gastrointestinal organs like the colon to prepare for motion and motility. Large meals and meals containing a decent amount of fat stimulate the gastrocolic reflex, which tells the colon that a lot of food has just entered the system. The colon ramps up its motility in response to the gastrocolic reflex. In some people, high-fat meals can trigger the gastrocolic reflex, which causes them to have a sudden need to poop - or even diarrhea - shortly after eating.


The main reason you are constipated is due to your healthy weight loss diet not having enough fat. Adding more fat to your diet might solve your problem, but that won't result in weight loss. Aside from resulting in weight gain, it may also raise your cholesterol levels. The most effective solution is to add healthy fats to your diet. (recommended as per your body weight and body parameters).


Healthy fats can be found in avocados, nuts, pumpkin seeds, tahini, hummus, an extra drizzle of olive oil, or fatty fish like salmon. Supplements containing fish oil or flaxseed oil can also provide modest benefits. When adding these fats, it is important to consider the daily recommended fat intake based on age, gender, weight, and body parameters.



natural sugars


You're cutting out natural sugars from your diet.

Natural sugar is available in milk, yogurt, bananas, grapes, mango, watermelon, and dried fruits like raisins and apricots. Carrots and beets also contain natural sugar. Your weight, BMI, body parameters, desired goals (weight loss, inch loss), and health conditions are taken into consideration by your dietician or health coach, who decides whether to add these food items or not. Avoiding these food items from your weight loss diet will result in constipation.


Lactose in dairy products, fructose in fruits, and sorbitol in dried fruits all have mild laxative properties that attract water to the colon. When your diet does not contain natural sugars, there is a tricky way to avoid constipation. Magnesium 400 to 800 mg taken at night could help to some extent by attracting some moisture to your bowels. However, it is not recommended for everyone, especially if you have kidney disease.


soluble fibers

The new diet you are following lacks soluble fiber.

Many popular diets reduce grains and root vegetables, and fruits, including gluten-free, paleo, keto, Whole30, and low-carb diets. Often, these diets, which are high in soluble fiber, are replaced with low-carb alternatives like leafy greens, berries, and nuts, which contain insoluble fiber.

In your digestive tract, soluble and insoluble fiber behave very differently. As soluble fiber holds onto water, it helps keep your poos bulky and soft, no matter how long they travel to the exit. Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, can't hold onto water as it passes through the digestive tract.

Black beans, lima beans, brussels sprouts, avocados, sweet potatoes, broccoli, kidney beans, pears, figs, apricots, carrots, apples, guavas, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, hazelnuts, oats, barley are all high in soluble fibers. However, your dietician or health coach decides to add these food items to your weight loss diet.


constipation in weight loss diet

The main objective of a weight loss diet is weight loss, isn't it? When you're losing weight but constipation is bothering you, there are other ways to handle this problem.


"My weight loss diet is a healthy and balanced diet and contains all the above foods, yet I am suffering from constipation" - This is what many people say. As a first step, I would ask you what type and duration of exercise you are performing. In 24 hours, how much water do you consume?


The importance of exercise, regardless of your diet, cannot be overstated when it comes to weight loss and preventing conditions like constipation. Food moves more quickly through the large intestine when you exercise. Limiting water absorption from the stool, exercise facilitates easier stool passage in the body. Exercises such as walking, running, cycling, and jumping jacks can help prevent constipation on a keto or any other diet.


If you're on an intensive weight loss diet, and doing regular exercises, consuming enough water, yet you're suffering from constipation, then it is time to consult your doctor. Hypothyroidism needs to be ruled out, along with a few other diseases like IBS.


Your doctor might prescribe a few medicines that relieve constipation. These medicines are associated with a few side effects, such as abdominal cramps and diarrhea. Some of these medicines can be taken for a short period, while others can be taken for a long period.


OTC medicines for the constipation

Check the OTC (Over The Counter) medicines available for constipation in the USA.

psyllium (Metamucil, Konsyl), calcium polycarbophil (FiberCon), methylcellulose fiber (Citrucel), mineral oil (Fleet Mineral Oil Enema), magnesium hydroxide (Phillips Milk of Magnesia), magnesium citrate, polyethylene glycol (Miralax), sodium phosphate (Fleet Saline Enema), glycerin (Fleet Glycerin Suppository), bisacodyl (Dulcolax), senna/sennoside (Senokot), docusate (Colace, DulcoEase, Surfak).


We discussed with Dr. Meeinal Paatil (USA Certified Health Coach, Fitness trainer, Physiotherapist, founder and Director of DietMi weight loss and fitness program) about the constipation problem in a weight loss diet. She said, "I observed that a deviation from the diet plan, less water consumption, and avoiding exercise are the major causes of constipation. DietMi weight loss diet plan contains enough healthy fat, soluble fibers and natural sugar." she added,"I make sure my clients get a balanced and healthy diet. I also want to add one more reason, and that is arthritis. Due to arthritis and joint pains, a few of my clients are unable to do exercises. For them, I design a completely different diet. Sometimes, I advised them OTC medicines to relieve constipation for a shorter period only. If it is not rectifying their issues, then I advise them to consult a doctor."


Summary

If weight loss is your primary goal and you’re following a healthy weight loss diet plan (even if your it includes enough fats, soluble fiber, and natural sugars), make sure you exercise regularly and drink enough water to avoid constipation.


Even if your weight loss diet includes enough fats, soluble fiber, and natural sugars, yet you're constipated, you can try OTC medicines for a short period. The main side effects of constipation-relieving medicines are abdominal cramps and diarrhea. If constipation is still bothering you, consult a doctor.


 

Author

Dr. Vikass Patil

18 years of experience in the medical field as a medical practitioner, working experience in Aster Clinics, Dubai, Dr. Rami Hamed Medical center Dubai.

Book online consultation with Dr. Vikass Patil.







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