Constipation during pregnancy: How to keep your bowel routine easy

Constipation during pregnancy

Are you constipated all the time? Irregular bowel movements unfortunately plague some women during pregnancy but bypass others altogether.

Why do a lot of women suffer from constipation during pregnancy?

Once again, it's your pregnancy hormones in addition to your expanding uterus, wreaking havoc as they cause the muscles in your bowels to relax on the job — making them sluggish and allowing food to linger in the digestive tract. The upside: There's added time for nutrients to be absorbed into your bloodstream, allowing more of them to reach your baby.

What are the remedies for constipation during pregnancy?

  • Fiber up. Fibrous foods will help you eliminate waste — it's that simple. Eat whole-grain cereals or breads; legumes, fresh vegetables and fruits with the peels if you can stomach it, and dried fruits.To help you go, go green — not only in the form of green vegetables, but in a juicy, sweet kiwi, a tiny fruit that packs a potent laxative effect. Stay away from white foods.
  • Pace yourself. Don't plunge right into a fiber-rich diet if you're not used to it – go from zero to 35 grams quickly and you'll pay the price in gas and bloating. Instead, wade in slowly — add some fiber to every meal but don't overload on it.
  • Don't max out at mealtime. Big meals can overtax your digestive tract, leading to traffic jams. Try eating six mini-meals a day instead.
  • Drink up. Eight full glasses of each day will keep solids moving through your digestive tract at an impressive rate and keep your stool soft. Prune juice is great since it's a mild laxative.
  • Consider your supplements. Ironically, many of the supplements that do a pregnant body good (prenatal vitamins, calcium, and iron supplements) can exacerbate constipation. Check with your practitioner about alternatives
  • Don't just sit there. Regular exercise during pregnancy encourages regular bowel movements.
  • Stay away from stimulant laxatives. Talk to your practitioner before taking any constipation medication or remedy.

Can constipation become serious?

No, it usually won’t. However, occasionally, it could point to another problem altogether. If you are suffering from severe constipation which is accompanied by stomach pain, or if you are passing mucus or blood in your stool, call your doctor immediately.

Straining too hard during a bowel movement could also lead to the common pregnancy problem of hemorrhoids. .