Occasional constipation is often defined as having infrequent bowel movements with stools that are typically hard, dry and difficult to eliminate. You may even experience occasional cramping and bloating. While many factors may lead to a sluggish bowel, here are some of the most common:
- Diet: Too many refined sugars, starches and processed foods can lead to occasional constipation. Eating plenty of fiber-rich, non-starchy foods that are low in sugar may help maintain healthy bowel movements.
- Too little exercise: Exercise triggers the flow of lymph in the body, which stimulates peristalsis (the natural muscle contractions that move food through the intestines) and supports healthy elimination.
- Changes in routine: Changes in normal daily activity can often throw off your internal schedule, which can affect your bowel movements and lead to occasional constipation.
- Lack of time: Although taking the time to eliminate regularly is an important part of good bowel health, many people simply don’t do it. Try setting aside time in your day to go to the bathroom, even it means setting the alarm a bit earlier.
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