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Ask the Expert Archive

What foods can prevent constipation?


Q. What should I eat to stop constipation?


A. Prevention and treatment of constipation is individual, and it generally involves a more comprehensive approach to diet rather than focusing on one particular type of food.
Fiber from fruits and vegetables is one component of a healthy dietary approach to preventing and treating constipation. Selecting fruits and veggies with edible peels (apples, pears, dates, sweet potatoes, and legumes) to eat will help increase fiber intake when the skin is consumed.
Additional tips for preventing and treating constipation include: eating a variety of both fruits and vegetables. Filling half-your-plate at meals with produce. Eating whole-grains such as 100% whole wheat breads, whole grain cereals (such as shredded wheat), and unprocessed grains like brown rice, whole barley, and quinoa. Drinking plenty of water and exercising to help digestion. If constipation is a chronic problem for you, it is recommended that you discuss this with your physician.

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