Steps to Reduce Your Constipation
Constipation can occur during cancer treatments as a result of medications, taking iron supplements, decreased food or fluid intake or decreased physical activity. Your physician will discuss appropriate medications to take to keep your bowels moving, though there are some dietary tips that may also help you regulate them.
Consuming adequate fiber (25-35 grams per day) is beneficial in helping move food contents through the GI tract. Consider incorporating some of these great sources of fiber into your diet:
• fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables
• dried fruits
• brown or wild rice, quinoa, steel cut oats
• whole grain breads, tortillas and pastas
• nuts and seeds
Aim for a minimum of 8 cups (64 ounces) of fluids daily, especially when increasing fiber intake. A few options are to drink water, prune juice, warm juices and decaffeinated tea or coffee.
Try the following recipe, taken from Eating Well Through Cancer by Holly Clegg and Gerald Miletello, as a means of relieving your constipation.
1¼ cups unprocessed bran
1 Cup prune juice
1 Tbsp molasses or honey
1 Cup applesauce
Mix and store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Stir before taking. Take 2 Tbsp every night as needed. Makes 18 (2 Tbsp) servings.