6 Natural Cures for Constipation That Everyone Should Know About

It's not uncommon to get a little blocked-up every now and then — constipation can be caused by everything from diet to lack of exercise to pregnancy to medications, according to the National Institutes of Health. So what is the best solution for getting things moving again? Here are six natural remedies to help with constipation.

1. Coffee

Coffee is a natural laxative. "Coffee of any sort can stimulate the distal colon, which helps push waste out of the body more quickly," reported the Washington Post. That includes decaf coffee too, because the laxative effect isn't caused by the caffeine in coffee, reported the Post. But coffee doesn't work on everyone, only "about 30 percent of humans feel the need to defecate after drinking their morning joe."

2. Flaxseed

According to the Mayo Clinic, "good evidence suggests that flaxseed (not flaxseed oil) produces laxative effects." Flaxseed, which is high in fiber, can be eaten raw, mixed with water or juice, or cooked into meals.

3. Water

It may seem too easy, but water really is kind of magical. Constipation can be eased by staying hydrated and drinking plenty of fluids. According to the Mayo Clinic, the Institute of Medicine recommends drinking 13 cups of liquid a day for men and 11 cups for women.

4. Prunes (and prune juice)

Prunes aren't just for old people ... they're for everyone! Prunes and prune juice are both natural laxatives, although their effect "is not entirely understood," reported the New York Times. Prunes may act as laxatives because they contain something called sorbitol, but the Time reports that "The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics warns against consuming more than 50 grams of sorbitol a day."

5. High fiber veggies


The National Library of Medicine recommends eating vegetables that are high in fiber, like "asparagus, broccoli, corn, squash, and potatoes (with the skin still on)" to help with constipation. According to the NLM, "High-fiber foods help move waste through your body."

6. Exercise

Moving around can do a lot to, well, get things moving again. Many experts recommend exercise to help ease constipation, as lack of exercise can cause constipation in the first place. 

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Anna Swartz

Anna is a staff writer for Mic covering breaking news. She can be reached at aswartz@mic.com.

MORE FROM

8 of the biggest moments from the 48th NYC LGBT Pride March

The biggest Pride event in the world was a sight to behold.

Movement for Black Lives activists disrupt Minneapolis Pride to protest Philando Castile verdict

Protesters reportedly held signs with messages like "No KKKops at Pride."

Protesters reportedly arrested near NYC's Stonewall Inn, Pride March endpoint

The reason for the arrests were not immediately known.

Marchers arrested in Istanbul as Pride parade continues despite cancellation

The organizers' decision to move forward with the previously cancelled march led to clashes with police.

Car slams into Eid celebrants in UK, injuring 6; police say terrorism isn't suspected

Police say they believe an Eid celebrant was behind the wheel of the car that injured six outside a mosque.

Oil truck explodes in Pakistan, killing at least 153

The deadly fire broke out as residents rushed to collect the leaking oil from the overturned tanker.

8 of the biggest moments from the 48th NYC LGBT Pride March

The biggest Pride event in the world was a sight to behold.

Movement for Black Lives activists disrupt Minneapolis Pride to protest Philando Castile verdict

Protesters reportedly held signs with messages like "No KKKops at Pride."

Protesters reportedly arrested near NYC's Stonewall Inn, Pride March endpoint

The reason for the arrests were not immediately known.

Marchers arrested in Istanbul as Pride parade continues despite cancellation

The organizers' decision to move forward with the previously cancelled march led to clashes with police.

Car slams into Eid celebrants in UK, injuring 6; police say terrorism isn't suspected

Police say they believe an Eid celebrant was behind the wheel of the car that injured six outside a mosque.

Oil truck explodes in Pakistan, killing at least 153

The deadly fire broke out as residents rushed to collect the leaking oil from the overturned tanker.