Updated: Apr 7, 2021
Constipation is one problem you make encounter when detoxing from toxic foods. Dr. Hyman defines being constipated as having fewer than two bowel movements a day. If this has not been your pattern, it is NOT normal. You need to address it.
Constipation sabotages your body's ability to detoxify. Toxins in your gut are reabsorbed when your bowel isn't clear. This can cause withdrawal symptoms such as headache, brain fog and fatigue. That is why it is critical to clear out your bowel before you begin the program and keep it clear while you are on it.
Overcoming constipation is an important to long-term health. You can follow these steps anytime you are faced with constipation.
Step 1: Basic Bowel Care
Eat two tablespoons of ground flaxseed a day. Flaxseeds absorb a lot of water and provide omega 3-fats and plenty of fiber.
Take and extra two to four 100-150 mg capsules of magnesium citrate twice daily. Reduce the dose or stop if your bowels become too loose.
Take 1,000-2,000 mg of Vitamin C (buffered ascorbic acid) as a powder or in capsules once or twice a day. This also helps with detoxification and your immune system.
These can be used safely over the long-term to keep your bowels regular and healthy.
Step 2: Herbal Laxative
If you try the steps above and it doesn't work, you can try using an herbal laxative (cascara, senna, and/or rhubarb). Take two to three capsules before bed.
These should not be used regularly, as they are habit forming and can make your colon lazy. You can use them for up to seven days.
Step 3: Magnesium Citrate Liquid
If you still have not had a bowel movement by the day after you've taken the herbal laxative, try taking one bottle of magnesium citrate liquid. After drinking the liquid, you should have a bowel movement within 6 hours.
If you don't have a bowel movement within six hours, move on to Step 4. But do this nor more than twice over the course of the preparation week. It should not be used regularly.
Do not use if you have inflammatory bowel disease or diverticulitis, if you have had recent abdominal or bowel surgery, or if you have had any type of bowel blockage or impaction without first consulting a physician.
Step 4: Dulcolax or Bisacodyl Suppository or Fleet Enema
If you still have not had a bowel movement six hours after taking the magnesium citrate liquid, you should take a Dulcolax or Bisacodyl suppository or Fleet Enema. The suppository is inserted into the rectum and usually results in a bowel movement within two to three hours. Use the Fleet Enema as directed.
Step 5: Consult a Physician
If you still have not had a bowel moment after following Steps 1-4, then you need to see a physician for a full evaluation. Most people can achieve a normal bowel movement with Step 1 alone. Step 2 can be helpful in more extreme cases. Steps 3 and 4 are rarely needed.
Next up: Lifestyle