Feeling a little constipated on the Elimination Phase of the diet? This may be a rather new experience for some people following the protocol in my book or on a low FODMAP diet for the first time.
This is a good time to review basic constipation prevention measures. After all, FODMAPs isn't everything!
* Increase your water consumption. This might need extra attention if you were previously drinking a lot of coffee, fruit juice, or regular soft drinks. Your body might be missing those fluids, even if it is not missing the FODMAPs!
* Increase your activity level. Even some light walking after meals may help. Consult your physician before sharply increasing the amount or intensity of exercise.
* Eat higher fiber choices from the allowed grains and starches, such as oatmeal/porridge, oat bran, winter squash, brown rice, rice bran, quinoa, corn pasta, and potatoes with the skin.
* Try larger portions of the allowed vegetables.
* Eat regular meals. Nothing in = nothing out?
* If your doctor has advised that you use laxatives or fiber supplements, use them every day to PREVENT constipation, rather than waiting to TREAT constipation. The latter approach often leads to a viscious cycle of contipation-overtreatment-diarrhea-nothing in the pipeline-constipation. Half a dose or even a quarter of a dose daily together with a low FODMAP diet might do the trick--experiment.
* Check your supplements. Calcium supplements, especially calcium carbonate, are sometimes culprits. On the other hand, adding a magnesium supplement might help prevent constipation. Doses over 350 mg/day (for adults) may have laxative effects. Work with your health care provider to choose an appropriate dose.
* Probiotics, taken regularly, might help.