Constipated? Skip the Dairy

OrganicSoymilk

Constipation remains one of the most common and consistent issues that my clients are experiencing. In fact, the more that I talk to people (whether they are my clients or not), the more that people will share with me that they are chronically constipated. I had a client who swore that he only had bowel movements once every two weeks. I had to ask him a couple of times if he was certain this was the case, and he assured me that he’d been this way his whole life. After working with me, he had regular bowel movements. More often than not, he had bowel movements every day, but he definitely had them once every other day – a great improvement from what he was experiencing before.

As you may have guessed, diet plays a huge role in our health, including whether or not we will experience constipation. Since I have a plant-based diet and do not eat any animal products, I am able to share with my clients tips, recipes, and foods that they may have never tried before, to help them improve their health and well-being. I know that eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, along with whole grains, and legumes – all of which have fiber, can ease constipation (and are recommended as part of having a healthy diet :)). And that’s what I recommend my clients try in order to have regular bowel movements. I also recommend that they drink enough water, exercise, and actively practice stress reduction methods. It’s no secret that I also encourage people to pay attention to how much dairy they’re consuming, and I do ask my clients to experiment with reducing and/or eliminating dairy and noticing any changes they may experience.

Dr. Michael Greger put together a wonderful video sharing lots of studies that show the link between consuming cow’s milk and being constipated. I highly recommend that you take a few minutes to watch this informative video, which can help you or anyone you know who is struggling with constipation, including your children. If you don’t have time to watch the video, I’ll share this with you: there have been several studies conducted on children to see whether or not eliminating cow’s milk from their diets would cure their constipation, and when cow’s milk was entirely eliminated, 100% of the children were no longer constipated.

And, as Dr. Michael Greger shares, these children also saw a, “resolution of rectal inflammation and complications such as anal fissures.” I’d say a 100% success rate is pretty amazing, wouldn’t you? Don’t underestimate the power of making healthy choices. And don’t be afraid to try new milks, such as organic soy milk, organic almond milk, organic rice milk, organic hemp milk, organic coconut milk – there’s no shortage of vegan milks that taste great, contain calcium, protein, vitamin D, vitamin B12 (some vegan milks are fortified with vitamin B12), and won’t cause you or your family to become constipated. What’s your favorite non-dairy milk? Share! And watch this video :).