Constipation is a condition that causes infrequent bowel movements, hard stools, and strain during bowel movements. Most cases of constipation occur because the colon absorbs too much water or the colon's contractions are too slow. When the stool is hard and dry, it is more difficult to pass.
Vitamin C can help relieve constipation because it can act as a natural laxative when taken on an empty stomach. Vitamin C powder can be combined with magnesium oxide powder and fresh grapefruit juice, or it can be taken in a buffered powder form that also contains magnesium and potassium salts mixed with ascorbic acid. Caution needs to be taken so that too much vitamin C is not ingested; it can cause diarrhea.
Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5)
Vitamin B5 taken in megadoses on an empty stomach can cause bowel evacuation. There are many preparations that combine vitamin B5 with other nutrients that can aid in constipation; these supplements are known as nutritional laxatives.
Folic Acid (Vitamin B9)
Folic acid can be added to the diet for those suffering from constipation. It is available as an individual supplement or in multivitamins or B-Complex vitamins.
Herbs for Constipation
In addition to vitamins, there are many herbs that can help alleviate the symptoms of constipation. Black radish extract is high in fiber, and it can also help the colon secrete mucus, which aids in the passing of stools. Additionally, peppermint naturally relaxes smooth muscle, which can also help with constipation.
Probiotics for Constipation
Probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, can also promote normal bowel movements. The addition of Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium longum, Lactobacillus paracasei, and Streptococcus thermophilus can also help eliminate constipation.