Many people experience constipation from time to time, and it can be uncomfortable.
In general, occasional constipation occurs when waste moves through your digestive system too slowly. It can build up and become hard and dry, making stool difficult to pass.
When you need relief, there are some home remedies that can get things moving again, like sipping certain juices.
What are the symptoms of constipation?
Constipation is usually defined as having fewer than three bowel movements per week. Even if you’re going to the bathroom somewhat regularly, trouble passing your stools may be another sign of this condition.
The symptoms of constipation include:
infrequent bowel movements
hard or lumpy stools
straining to have bowel movements
feeling blocked up or like you can’t fully empty your bowels
needing help to empty your rectum, such as with your hands or fingers
Juices and dosage
If you decide to try drinking juice to relieve constipation, keep in mind that a small amount of juice may be all you need.
For best results, the Cleveland Clinic recommends adults drink just a half to a full cup of juice, once per day, preferably in the morning.
In general, aim to drink eight or more cups of liquid each day to help stay regular.
1. Prune juice
The most popular juice to relieve constipation is prune juice. Each 8-ounce glass contains about 2.6 grams of fiber. That’s about 10 percent of your daily requirement.
While the fiber may bulk up your stools, the sorbitol in the prune juice helps soften them, making them easier to pass. Prune juice is also a good source of vitamin C and iron.
Eating dried plums or prunes is another way to ward off constipation. In fact, one 2011 study suggests that prunes should be considered a first-line therapy when dealing with mild to moderate constipation.
2. Apple juice
Apple juice may provide you with a very gentle laxative effect. It’s often recommended for children who have constipation because it has a relatively high ratio of fructose to glucose and sorbitol content.
But for this reason, it may also cause intestinal discomfort in large doses.
You might think that eating applesauce would help constipation, but that’s not the case. Applesauce contains a higher level of pectin than apple juice.
Pectin is a substance that will add bulk to your stool. It becomes firmer and more difficult to pass, making it a better choice after episodes of diarrhea.
3. Pear juice
Another great option is pear juice, which contains four times more sorbitol than apple juice. This juice is also often recommended for children who have bouts of constipation.
Pear juice isn’t as rich in vitamins as prune juice, but many kids prefer its flavor.