As a mom with kids and aging parents, it’s not unusual for someone to have an occasional bout of constipation sooner or later. This is especially true if someone is sick and taking medication for it, and I wanted an easy and natural way to help ease their constipation pain.
I was thrilled to find that there are essential oils and natural remedies for constipation, and these natural remedies include some foods for constipation. There are also foods to avoid when constipated, and we’re going to cover it all in this post. This will give you a safe and natural remedy to use yourself the next time constipation strikes.
Recommended Natural Remedies for Constipation
What is Constipation
Before you know the effective treatment of constipation, you have to understand what constipation is. Constipation is a condition where you have difficulty passing stools, and this is usually combined with infrequent bowel movements. To be infrequent, you will usually have less than three bowel movements per week. (1)
Occasional constipation is very common for everyone to experience at some point during their lives. People can also develop chronic constipation. Chronic constipation means that you almost always have trouble having a bowel movement, and you usually strain almost every time you go. (2)
Unfortunately for everyone, there are dozens of constipation causes. This means that it can take quite a while to isolate what is causing your particular case of constipation. However, there are several common causes that you can try to eliminate from your diet to see if it alleviates your constipation problems. The common causes of constipation include (3):
- Medications like antacids and narcotic pain medications
- Slower moving stool through your colon
- Certain pelvic floor disorders (4)
- Gastrointestinal disorders like IBS
- Certain cancers like colon or rectal
- Nerve issues around your rectum or colon
How do you know if you’re constipated? There are usually several symptoms that you’ll start to notice as you get more and more constipated. They do vary from person to person. However, the most common symptoms of constipation include (5):
- Three bowel movements or less per week
- Hard or lumpy stools
- Needing help to empty your rectum
- Feeling like you can’t empty everything.
- Bleeding from straining
- Abdominal pain and bloating
Foods to Eat and Avoid for Constipation
Foods can help or hurt you when you’re constipated. This is why it’s important to know which foods you should eat and which foods you shouldn’t eat when you’re constipated.
Good Foods to Reduce Constipation
- Citrus Fruits
Foods that Cause Constipation
- White Rice
- Red Meat
What Are the Top Essential Oils for Constipation?
We’ve rounded up the top five essential oils for constipation. Additionally, we’ll also tell you the best way to use them to get the most relief.
1. Sweet Basil Oil
Sweet basil oil has a long history of medicinal use, and it’s a popular way to relieve both gas and stomach pain. (6) Additionally, sweet basil’s pain relieving properties are effective in combating the pain that can come with being constipated or chronically constipated. This can give you some natural relief while you wait for this bout of constipation to end. (7)
To use sweet basil oil to help with your constipation, you can use it as aromatherapy. Add a few drops of your basil oil to a bowl full of warm water and breathe it in. You can also add it to a diffuser. It also works very well by placing a few drops in your bath water and soaking in it for 15 to 20 minutes while the warm water’s vapor rises and inhale it.
2. Ginger Oil
Ginger oil is another essential oil that has a long medicinal history for helping relieve various gastrointestinal issues. It’s very common to use ginger oil to help alleviate any nausea symptoms pregnant women may experience. (8) It’s also useful for encouraging good digestion as well as consistent waste movement through your intestines and out through your rectum. (9)
You can use ginger oil in a variety of ways to help ease your constipation. One popular method is to make and drink ginger tea. To make the tea, you’ll need two tablespoons of raw ginger root, two cups of water, and two tablespoons of honey. Peel and slice your ginger root and put your water on to boil. Once it starts boiling, drop your ginger root in and let it boil for 10 to 20 minutes. Remove it from the heat and add your honey.
3. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil contains natural muscle relaxants that can allow your intestinal walls to relax and allow your stools through. In fact, it’s proven to help alleviate the uncomfortable symptoms like constipation, bloating, and gas that comes with Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS. (10) It also has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can naturally reduce any inflammation you have. This can ease your constipation as well. (11)
To use peppermint oil effectively, you can mix a few drops of the oil into an eight-ounce glass of water and drink it once a day. You can also make a massage oil and massage the oil into your abdominal area. Take two or three drops of peppermint oil and mix it with one teaspoon of warm carrier oil. Gently rub this mixture into your abdomen and inhale the sweet scent. You can repeat this massage two or three times per day.
4. Black Pepper Oil
Black pepper oil has powerful anti-inflammatory properties, and it can give your stagnant digestive system a boost. This can help to encourage healthy stool movement and reduce your risk of constipation. (12) It can also help to reduce the amount of gas that you have trapped in your stomach. (13)
You want to use your black pepper oil as a massage oil. You can mix a few drops of black pepper oil into a teaspoon of warmed carrier oil like coconut oil. Once it’s mixed, gently massage the oil into your abdominal area for five minutes or so. You can repeat this twice a day until your constipation goes away.
5. Lemon Oil
Lemon oil’s citrus scent combined with the high antioxidant content makes this oil a great anti-inflammatory as well as one oil that promotes digestive system balance and health. (14) (15) This can help to discourage constipation and encourage digestive regularity.
You can use lemon oil two different ways to get the benefits. First, you can add a few drops of the oil into a diffuser and use aromatherapy. Second, you can make a massage oil by mixing lemon oil with a carrier oil and massaging it into your abdomen. Either way works wonderfully to give you constipation relief.
My Experience to Relieve Constipation Naturally
Like I mentioned earlier, I like to use essential oils for constipation for my family in several ways. I’ve found that my kids tend to do better with putting the oil in a diffuser and running the diffuser for 30 minutes or so before they go to bed. They’re full of energy and don’t want to sit still long enough for me to massage the oil into their abdomens. My kids also like to eat prunes, apples, citrus fruits like grapefruit or oranges to help give them the relief of their constipation.
When my mom has constipation, she said that she likes to take a relaxing bath with a few drops of the essential oils mixed into her bathwater. Since she’s not chasing kids around, she has more time to do this. She said that it helps to relax all of her muscles and it helps to reduce her constipation symptoms.
I like to make a massage oil and take 10 minutes to myself, lay back on my bed or in my favorite chair, and massage it into my abdomen. I’ve found that this few minutes does wonderful things for my constipation issue, and the massage feels great on my tense muscles.
Reviewing Constipation Relief Products
1. Dr. Schulze’s – HerbalMucil Plus
- RELIEVES CONSTIPATION: The average American stores from 10 to 12 lbs...
- BEST BULK FIBER FORMULA: When HerbalMucil Plus hits your colon, it...
- MUCILAGINOUS: HerbalMucil Plus is very mucilaginous, or slippery,...
This bulk fiber formula will help to get your digestive system functioning at optimal levels. The fiber encourages a healthy movement of stool through your digestive tract, and this can reduce constipation. It also adds a mucous layer to your intestines that encourages your stools to pass through your rectum. This powder comes infused with water that stops it from drying out as it passes through your body.
Additionally, you’ll love that this supplement comes with only organic and healthy products. You won’t have to worry about any ingredients making your constipation worse. There is no sugar, dairy, or soy products in this formula. This means that people who are lactose intolerant can use it too without having digestive problems.
2. Digestic – Relief of Constipation – IBS
- REVOLUTIONARY FORMULA : Never suffer from constipation again ! 100%...
- FAST ACTING RELIEF : Quickly relieves and promotes optimal colon...
- MADE by NATURE : Revolutionary organic herbal treatment formulated...
This herbal supplement comes in a pill form that is easy to take and digest. It is designed to ease bloating, gas, IBS symptoms, and constipation. It’s safe and natural, and the formula doesn’t contain any gluten or GMOs. This makes this herbal supplement great for people with gluten intolerance or Celiac disease. They’ll be able to take it without a problem.
You’ll get very fast acting relief when you take this supplement, and this is excellent news for people who have chronic constipation. There are no side effects associated with taking this supplement.
Tips for Constipation Relief Remedies
- Exercise more to stimulate your digestive tract. (16)
- Add more fiber to your diet. (17)
- Take probiotics or eat probiotic-rich foods. (18)
- Drink more water to lubricate your digestive tract. (19)
- Add a Glucomannan supplement to your daily routine. (20)
- Use over-the-counter laxatives like Magnesium Citrate. (21)
- Eat a few prunes each day. (22)
Caution of Essential Oils as a Constipation Treatment
- Can cause skin irritation
- May cause allergic reactions
- May cause sensitivity to sunlight
- Unless the essential oil is food-grade, don’t take it orally.
- Avoid if you’re pregnant or nursing.
- Avoid using with children under three.
Did you enjoy our post on essential oils and natural remedies for constipation? Did your favorite essential oil or food to help with constipation make our list? We want to hear from you! You can sound off in the comment section below and let us know what you thought of our post, and we invite you to share our post if you liked it.