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7 sneaky medications that make you constipated

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Are things just not moving?

Is your daily bathroom ritual a strain?  Or, do you think it’s normal to go just every few days?

Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s not.

Over 60 million Americans suffer from chronic constipation, and if you don’t have at least one, easy-to-pass bowel movement a day, then you are one of them.

Constipation can be caused by many things, though most people never suspect the medicines they are taking. But, it turns out that there are 7 sneaky medications you could be taking right now that could be making your restroom trips more troublesome than they should be.

Let’s take a look at the drugs that are the worst offenders.

#1 – Painkillers

Any medications you take for pain, from ibuprofen and aspirin to prescription drugs, could be causing your constipation.  Your digestive tract is loaded with receptors to these types of medications, meaning that they have a direct effect on your bowels. Chronic use of over-the-counter pain medicines or even just a day or two of narcotic pain medicines can stop you up, leaving you feeling bloated and sick.

If it’s painful joints you’re dealing with, try this fatty secret to pain-free joints, and ditch the pills.

#2 – Antidepressants

These are some of the worst offenders in the battle against constipation. Older tricyclic antidepressants block the contractions of your bowels. When nothing moves, your bowels get more and more blocked.Even the newer antidepressants, including the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors like Prozac can leave you straining and unable to go.

What can you do to make you mind and your body work better? Try bumping up your vitamin D to relieve depression naturally and avoid the constipation risk of pharmaceuticals.

# 3 – Anti-nausea medications

Your doctor may have given you Zofran to ease your nausea, but thanks to its negative impact on the serotonin in your in your body, you’ll likely end up constipated too. Instead, beat nausea naturally with a cup of ginger tea or a couple of sips of cola.

# 4 – Antacids

If you take drugs to relieve heartburn it’s likely to leave you unable to relieve yourself in the bathroom, especially if you take it long-term.  Even worse are the antacids with calcium and aluminum in them and — unfortunately for sufferers of heart burn and acid reflux — these types of medications litter the drug aisles in every store.

But let me share a secret… your doctor may be operating under the false premise that acid reflux is caused by too much stomach acid when it’s actually caused by too little stomach acid. That’s what we call acid reflux’s biggest myth. Ditch the meds and try a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar a day in eight ounces of water.

# 5 – Blood pressure drugs

From calcium channel blockers to diuretics, if you’ve been prescribed a medication to lower your blood pressure, you’ve probably ended up constipated as just one of the side effects.  It’s easy to see how taking a diuretic can stop you up since they pull water out of your system… the same water your body needs to soften your stool so that it can pass easily.

If possible, consider natural supplements to lower your blood pressure, or do like my colleague, health writer Margaret Cantwell, who gave up one food to make her high BP vanish.

# 6 – Allergy medications

The rule is, “If it gives you a dry mouth, it gives you constipation.” This makes allergy medications one of the sneakiest causes of constipation.  After all, you don’t want to suffer from sneezing and itchy, watery eyes all season, so you pop an allergy pill.  It seems harmless until your bowels just won’t move. This spring, give these 7 allergy-fighting foods a try.

# 7 – Laxatives themselves

The fact that laxatives actually stop you up may seem counter-intuitive but if you start the laxative cycle, it can cause dependency, and you may end up not being able to go without them.  Think twice before reaching for that Dulcolax or Ex-lax.  It may help today but make things worse in the long run. If you need a little help now and then and have to reach for a product to help you go, look for one with natural ingredients that puts the least stress on your body.

Constipation is not something you should ignore.  Too many people accept it as a fact of everyday life, but not only can constipation lead to hemorrhoids and even fecal incontinence — but chronic constipation can set you up for disease… from leaky gut to colon cancer.

If you don’t have at least one, easy bowel movement a day, take a look at the medicines your doctor has prescribed. You may be taking one of these sneaky medicines that make you constipated. If you can manage your health without them… more power to you. At the least, experience daily, easy bowel movements by:

  • Increasing your fiber intake. Not only will it help you go, it will cut your cancer risk.
  • Make sure you get enough potassium in your diet to keep stool hydrated.
  • Substitute your regular coffee for chicory coffee. Chicory supplies inulin fiber that supports the natural production of beneficial bacteria in the colon
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