How do I relieve constipation on the paleo diet?

Answered on July 29, 2016
Created July 22, 2016 at 2:25 PM

This diet is great because it made me lose a lot of weight. However, I am dealing with dreadful constipation. I usually have to take an herbal laxative to poop right, that's not good. I eat green vegetables, meat, fish, and full-fat greek yogurt. I just want to poop normally without having to take supplements. 

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3 Answers

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on July 29, 2016
at 02:04 PM

Constipation may be a sign if intestinal inflammation.  It is certainly important to address, not only for relieving discomfort, but beause elimination of toxins through the colon is one of the body's main detoxification pathways. Here are my thoughts:

1. A healthy gut microbiome is important.  A good probiotic can help.  Other options are fermented foods that are unpastueruized.

2. Magnesium-citrate is an excellent supplement for those with constipation.  In fact I frequently recommend a protocol starting at 135 mg and increasing daily by 1 capsule until relief... ie daily bowel movements. I know you want to avoid supplements, but I'm astonished at the number of my patients who are magnesium deficient.

3. Resistant starch is very helpful, not only because it helps retain water in the stool, but it also feeds the good bacteria in your gut (see #1 above)

4. Drink plenty of water.

5. Definitely avoid commercial laxatives as they can cause dependency, have chemical irritants, and do not address the underlying problem.

In Health,

Dr. Yvonne


on July 24, 2016
at 07:35 PM

I found adding some carbs back in the form of mostly tubers and a little bit of fruit fixed the issue for me. You don't have to add it back in excessive amounts to see a change. Might not be what you wanted to hear due to the current dogma by many paleo guru's but just going from my personal experiences so do not shoot this messager lol. I don't think cutting out carbs is necessary if your a non-diabetic or obese person. I lost loads of weight and haved stayed conistent for nearly 2 years just by eating whole foods and avoiding sugar, salt, oil and grains. Good luck on your journey :)



on July 24, 2016
at 07:34 AM

I have found that adding good bacteria to the intestinal tract worked for me. Maybe switch yoghurts, eat some unpasteurized sauerkraut, etc. Also, at the moment I am experimenting with resistant starch and it does help with bowel movements.

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