How to prevent and treat constipation while you travel
Everyone has gotten constipated at least once in their life and constipated while traveling. In fact, constipation is one of the most common gastrointestinal issues that affects people while they’re on vacation or when they leave home for a while. This is referred to as occasional constipation or traveler’s constipation and even affects people who normally don’t have intestinal problems.
The causes of traveler’s constipation
When we talk about constipation, we’re referring to when a person is unable to go to the bathroom for more than three days in a row. If the problem persists for more than a week you should consult a doctor because it can turn into serious intestinal blockage that must be dealt with quickly before it becomes a more serious problem.
Why does a person get constipated while they’re traveling or while they’re are on vacation?
Generally speaking, traveling disrupts the body’s natural timing and therefore, also disrupts the biological clock that regulates eating, sleeping, and digestive patterns. Moreover, while traveling, it’s often difficult to use a bathroom when you need to so by waiting, you throw your timing off. Additionally, jet-lag disturbs digestive function and the metabolism’s speed: a big time zone change often means eating at times that are different than your natural routine which often results in a diminished fluid intake, which in turn causes dehydration and results in hard stools.
Here is a summary of the most frequent causes of traveler’s constipation:
- Experimenting with new foods and beverages that can affect the digestive system, irritate the colon and block normal body functions.
- While in transit, sitting still, the lack of toilets and inadequate fiber and water intake are all factors that affect bowel regularity.
- Lack of privacy while staying with other people can inhibit bowl movements
- Activities you may do on vacation may affect your body.
- While travelling, it’s pretty common to eat less vegetables, fruits and fiber rich foods.
- Natural remedies that help promote regularity while on vacation
Natural remedies that help you fight constipation while you’re on vacation
There are various natural, easy ways to prevent or fight constipation that don’t resort to the use of an enema. Here are some tips to help you avoid getting constipated while you’re on vacation:
- Go to the bathroom when you feel that you need to, constipation usually starts when you skip going.
- Drink lots of water throughout the day so that you don’t get dehydrated.
- Stay mobile and avoid too much downtime because it can slow down your metabolism.
- Try to eat fiber rich foods so that your gastrointestinal tract stays clear.
What to Pack
Flax seed and aloe vera are two natural laxatives. Flax seeds can be added to meals and aloe vera can be taken as a supplement. Magnesium supplements also help ease constipation. In fact, some studies have shown a direct link between constipation and low magnesium levels. If you decide to take a dietary supplement that can help ease your constipation, make sure you read the whole leaflet so that you don’t exceed dosage amounts because using too many laxatives can prevent the body’s ability to absorb important nutrients. Cascara (commonly called Cascara Sagrada or sacred bark) is very effective at relieving constipation. Its properties have been known to relieve digestive and bowel issues.
Psyllium naturally makes you regular
Psyllium is a herbaceous plant that gets its name from the Greek word “psylla” which means flea, which refers to the fact that its seeds resemble fleas.
The fiber that comes from the cuticle of Psyllium seeds helps intestinal transit regularity and normalizes stool consistency and therefore makes everything happen smoothly. You can learn everything there is to know about psyllium ability to regulate bowl movements in the article titled “How to promote bowel regularity naturally with psyllium!”.
Rhubarb is a great laxative
Rhubarb extract promotes intestinal transit regularity and cleanses the body and digestive functions. Small doses help you digest and large doses help you go to the bathroom. It increases stool volume and helps you go more easily. Rhubarb extract can be used in teas, or in a dietary supplement that helps fight constipation.