2

votes

Trouble pooping - a Paleo-friendly alternative to Activia yogurts?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 23, 2011 at 10:51 AM

This isn't necessarily a problem that started since I switched to Paleo, but eating Paleo seems to have limited my solutions. In short, I have trouble with regular bowel movements. On a good week they're every 1-2 days, but sometimes I'll go 3-4 days between bowel movements, which can't be good.

Before I switched to Paleo, I used to drink Activia yogurt every morning with breakfast, and that almost always did the trick. I was drinking the fruity, sugary stuff, so I cut that out when I changed my diet. Since then, I haven't been pooping regularly, and the few times I tried the regular, unflavored Activia yogurt it rarely had the same effect.

I'm eating two large meals a day supplemented by snacking on trail mix and veggies, and I don't feel hungry and my weight has been steady, so I doubt I'm undereating.

Are there any similar Paleo-friendly, er, "helpers" out there?

Edit

Thanks for all of your help, and I should have been more clear. The problem isn't a need to poop on a pre-determined schedule, but rather that if I don't have regular bowel movements I do feel "blocked" and can tell I need to go but just can't. I have been Paleo for about 3 months now, but eat some dairy and have cream in my coffee every morning, which doesn't seem to help.

306905a32e76b5c0764a663ea7e88426

(1072)

on July 29, 2011
at 07:55 AM

This does the trick; but I also find it gives me the need to pass water in the night, and gives me immensely strange dreams. This is all n=1. :)

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 24, 2011
at 11:45 AM

absolutely agree: fermented veg in maybe 6-8 ounce range every evening with dinner; natural calm as per the label daily forever; other than that just a good paleo eating style.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on June 23, 2011
at 07:21 PM

Fyi, kefir is made with a different culture, and has a different set of probiotics than yogurt...but it's great for those who tolerate dairy!

696079a860ef54810406ae25e4650863

(1623)

on June 23, 2011
at 07:18 PM

Make sure you're not reacting to the guar gum that's often in the coconut milk- that's actually not very nice stuff for your digestive system. See my response to http://paleohacks.com/questions/4077/do-i-need-to-worry-about-the-guar-gum-in-my-coconut-milk/38227#38227

43d33eea1cbc69af32352b1753a40458

(125)

on June 23, 2011
at 06:57 PM

I like a TB of Coconut oil in with my coffee and cream. It works like clockwork.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 23, 2011
at 05:37 PM

If you don't eat grains then you'll poop less? Sorry but that's nonsense. Paleo with daily fermented veg gives me just fine daily AM movements. No one has mentioned exercise. Any kind of good regular movement of the body helps keeping the system running well, ins and outs.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on June 23, 2011
at 04:39 PM

Also coffee tends to make me go. Apparently it initiates peristalsis. (I just like using big words.)

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on June 23, 2011
at 04:32 PM

+1 for the poop scale, an indispensable reference. ;)

332d9f75d1077abafff6887681f6b130

(1081)

on June 23, 2011
at 02:00 PM

+1 for refrencing the poop meat as well. Maybe that'd help with regularity too? Mimsy: How do you make the fermented yogurt?

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:33 PM

+1 to Dave S. for poop meat reference ;)

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on June 23, 2011
at 12:59 PM

Regularity is overrated. I usually only go twice a week, unless I have cookies, in which case it only takes a few hours! Poop is mostly dead bacteria and if you're not feeding them sugar and grains, you just don't generate as much fecal matter. They also feed on insoluble fiber, so lots of veggies (or fruit) will produce more... Whether or not generating more dead bacteria is a good thing - I don't know. But the Japanese are looking for supplies!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on June 23, 2011
at 12:07 PM

I added a couple of common tags...click "constipation" (17 existing questions) and "pooping" (18 existing questions). You're sure to find lots of useful info (or at least commiseration) there. :)

8be7a492e2844e2ad5595a6c73974f99

(891)

on June 23, 2011
at 11:01 AM

Just wanted to comment rather than answer.. Most likely a little gut adjustments going on. I wager it is temporary. Ever try a little fruit with that plain yogurt? Live Sauerkraut is a friendly probiotic. Magnesium citrate is a tremendous supplement!! Nuts and dried fruit in trail mix may be hanging you up a little. Search the hacks from the past regarding this subject. :)

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14 Answers

6
24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on June 23, 2011
at 11:18 AM

Magnesium citrate or chelate! I'd start with 200mg before bed, and bump it up until you get the, um, desired results. I believe you can take up to 1200mg a day; I've always found 400mg to work great. Many find it helpful with headaches and trouble sleeping too. A spoonful of olive oil or coconut oil might help lube up the pipes also.

306905a32e76b5c0764a663ea7e88426

(1072)

on July 29, 2011
at 07:55 AM

This does the trick; but I also find it gives me the need to pass water in the night, and gives me immensely strange dreams. This is all n=1. :)

4
66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:36 PM

There is no real schedule for pooping it is dependent on many factors, diet, sleep, water intake, etc. My frequency is 1-4 days. What is important is what the poop is like: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bristol_Stool_Scale

When people eat typical SAD there is way more material for bacteria to feed on hence more pooping, paleo food is more nutrient dense and less is turned into waste. Conventional Wisdom is what most people go by for regularity with little evidence to back it up. As long as your diet is good, you drink lots of water and your stools are not hard and lumpy your body will perform it's duties as it needs to not according to some predetermined schedule created in our minds.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on June 23, 2011
at 04:32 PM

+1 for the poop scale, an indispensable reference. ;)

4
B7fec4bf394de8dfa6403067aea94e1b

on June 23, 2011
at 12:43 PM

So, are you constipated, or just worried that you're not evacuating often? When I switched, I went to the bathroom a lot less, because everything I was eating was digestible. I'm not uncomfortable and rarely fart. I make a 24 hour fermented yogurt at home that helps move things along if I need it, also, drinking more water if I feel dehydrated. Also, eating a lot of fat does the trick for me.

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:33 PM

+1 to Dave S. for poop meat reference ;)

332d9f75d1077abafff6887681f6b130

(1081)

on June 23, 2011
at 02:00 PM

+1 for refrencing the poop meat as well. Maybe that'd help with regularity too? Mimsy: How do you make the fermented yogurt?

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on June 23, 2011
at 12:59 PM

Regularity is overrated. I usually only go twice a week, unless I have cookies, in which case it only takes a few hours! Poop is mostly dead bacteria and if you're not feeding them sugar and grains, you just don't generate as much fecal matter. They also feed on insoluble fiber, so lots of veggies (or fruit) will produce more... Whether or not generating more dead bacteria is a good thing - I don't know. But the Japanese are looking for supplies!

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 23, 2011
at 05:37 PM

If you don't eat grains then you'll poop less? Sorry but that's nonsense. Paleo with daily fermented veg gives me just fine daily AM movements. No one has mentioned exercise. Any kind of good regular movement of the body helps keeping the system running well, ins and outs.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on June 23, 2011
at 04:39 PM

Also coffee tends to make me go. Apparently it initiates peristalsis. (I just like using big words.)

2
Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on June 23, 2011
at 02:10 PM

why not just drink kefir or eat home made yogurt? its super cheap and easy to make, and i make my yogurt with heavy cream which is pretty freaking awesome.

culturesforhealth.com has cultures that work at room temp. put cream and activated cultures in a mason jar, stir and leave out on the counter for 24-48 hours. voila.

1
2c8c421cf0e0c462654c7dc37f8b9711

(2729)

on June 23, 2011
at 04:04 PM

Fermented veggies will provide probiotics if gut flora is the issue. It's super easy to make your own sauerkraut or kimchi. You could also try drinking kombucha for non-dairy probiotics. Natural Calm has magnesium and is also great for this.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 24, 2011
at 11:45 AM

absolutely agree: fermented veg in maybe 6-8 ounce range every evening with dinner; natural calm as per the label daily forever; other than that just a good paleo eating style.

1
E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:44 PM

When you first wake up drink 1-2 liters of water to get things moving.

Squat on the toilet or do you best to recreate a squat since sitting puts a kink in our system. trouble-pooping---a-paleo-friendly-alternative-to-activia-yogurts?

Along Chris Kesser's guidelines of Mag/Potash and probiotics, bananas are a good fit since they contain a lot of potash, mag and prebiotics which boost probiotics better.

1
Aeec781cc234fcae119d4a71532058f5

(2047)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:39 PM

Coconut milk does it for me. Go easy at first if you're not used to drinking it. My first experience with it was drinking 1/2 a can and I spent the next 6 hours dashing to the bathroom. Good way to poop AND get your sprints in, I guess!

696079a860ef54810406ae25e4650863

(1623)

on June 23, 2011
at 07:18 PM

Make sure you're not reacting to the guar gum that's often in the coconut milk- that's actually not very nice stuff for your digestive system. See my response to http://paleohacks.com/questions/4077/do-i-need-to-worry-about-the-guar-gum-in-my-coconut-milk/38227#38227

1
47fbd704c0392c2f38e86a72f1a06c6c

on June 23, 2011
at 11:09 AM

What about taking just a probiotic supplement? I need them to survive :-) My GI system is problematic. Or if you're doing dairy, get a high quality plain yogurt. It takes a little getting used to, but it's good. My kids love it drizzled with a little raw honey and some fruit.

0
345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:46 PM

add high fiber veggies and fruits first, I personally don't like adding anything thats not natural or use supplements. Add more water too!

if you aren't in any discomfort I wouldn't worry about it, you probably aren't eating as much and your digestion isn't working as hard as it normally would. You didn't stay how long you've been paleo.

If the above doesn't work, try adding coconut in your diet. Super high fiber and some of us can't really handle it. I've made coconut yogurt with it as well, its fab!

0
16cd12d7208203f231632d38249e39b9

on June 23, 2011
at 01:41 PM

Kefir did wonders for me. It's drinkable yogurt, essentially, but the price per serving is way lower than greek yogurts.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on June 23, 2011
at 07:21 PM

Fyi, kefir is made with a different culture, and has a different set of probiotics than yogurt...but it's great for those who tolerate dairy!

0
116d23135449332a8bf9106220cf632b

on June 23, 2011
at 01:35 PM

Magnesium + vitamin C + Tbsp coconut oil at night, then coffee + cream in the morning = insta poop. Your body will adjust eventually if you're eating enough fat.

43d33eea1cbc69af32352b1753a40458

(125)

on June 23, 2011
at 06:57 PM

I like a TB of Coconut oil in with my coffee and cream. It works like clockwork.

0
Fd504de9b242f4cd7009db70af5e2121

(558)

on June 23, 2011
at 01:31 PM

steak carpaccio,raw eggs,raw butter,yogurt...dont cook the heck out of your animal foods

0
E3267155f6962f293583fc6a0b98793e

(1085)

on June 23, 2011
at 11:37 AM

Chris Kresser of the Healthy Skeptic Blog discusses constipation in his podcast Episode 12. Magnesium and potassium for short term relief and probiotics for long term solution.

-1
1f24d4895246892ef4ee4d79b7f9eeeb

on June 23, 2011
at 12:49 PM

I re-use a Fleet enema every day with plain warm water (and a little lubricant). The small amount of water doesn't penetrate very far and only stays in maybe 30-40 seconds so it doesn't disrupt electrolyte balance. By clearing away hard feces that are at the front of the line, I have a good BM every day.

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