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MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (13,166)
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10/16/18 3:05 A

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"I've been noticing that every time I start eating healthier--which naturally leads to eating less fatty foods--"

- Message Posted by: CAPRISONYA - 10/14/2018

I think this is a popular misconception.

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MARTHA324's Photo MARTHA324 Posts: 9,082
10/15/18 4:25 P

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I've found the same thing at the beginning but with healthy fat in the diet, water, plenty of fiber and moving a lot, that "problem" goes away.

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FOXGLOVE999 SparkPoints: (30,608)
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10/15/18 10:26 A

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I find that any change in eating pattern will lead to bathroom problems. I'm on a high fat diet and having similar problems. I've found taking a teaspoon or two of Epsom salts dissolved in water, helps with this. It also helps with muscle cramping that often happens with dieting and new exercise regimes, so it's a double win.

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SLIMMERKIWI's Photo SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (310,266)
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10/14/18 10:35 P

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I don't know how much fat you are eating when you are having problems, but can tell you that fat is NEEDED to help with bowel motions, as well as helping to utilize various nutrients.

Rather than cutting fat out/down, try swapping the less healthy ones (saturated and trans) for healthier options, such as avocado, nuts, olive oil, rice bran oil, etc.

The link below may be helpful to you:


Edited by: SLIMMERKIWI at: 10/14/2018 (22:37)
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CED1106's Photo CED1106 Posts: 321
10/14/18 3:13 P

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Many dieters will tell you that your "gut flora" is important. If you're on low carb, you may have heard of the "keto flu". Part of the keto flu is that, since you're restricting simple carbohydrates, you're essentially starving the bacteria in your gut who are used to the undigested carbohydrates from your previous typical American diet. As a result, these bacteria die off, potentially causing various temporary problems with the movements.

Fat does affect your gut bacteria, but I've only found articles about the negative results of a high-fat diet. Maybe tracking your food intake will give you more clues how you've changed your diet. Good luck! :

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URBANREDNEK Posts: 9,857
10/14/18 12:00 P

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Natural body functions are not "gross" - and deviations from your norm NEEDS to be questioned and discussed!

As already mentioned, fat and water are both important in maintaining bowel regularity, along with fibre (amount and type), protein amounts and types (increases in lean meat intake can slow the bowels for some people), and any changes to your caffeine intake (coffee and tea both can help in avoiding constipation).

So - if your healthier eating choices have abruptly decreased your fat intake (you should be 20-35% fats in the standard recommendations), increased your lean meat intake, increased your fibre intake (especially insoluble fibre), and lowered your caffeine intake --- well, pretty much a solid recipe to create constipation! If you add in some increased physical activity (which can speed up bowel activity in some people and slow it in others), and haven't increased water intake to account for both the sweat losses and the change in diet, then there is another thing that you need to consider.

For many of us, our bodies need a very gradual change in these areas, with major increases in water intake, for the bowels to adjust and function to our "normal" again. I would suggest that you look at increasing your fat intake to the high end of suggested range (with healthy fats), and increase your fluid intake as well - especially with meals that are high in fibre and around your exercise times. If you had a major drop in caffeine intake, then understand that it might take a while for your body to adjust to that, too.

There are also lots of folks who have minor sensitivities to various foods, including veggies or fruits, that manifest in changes to bowel activity. I suggest you keep notes on how your bowels are reacting - and cross reference to your tracking of food intake (keeping in mind that processing from eating to eliminating can be 24-72 hours, depending on the person). You might find that there are certain foods that cause more issues than others (some of the common problems are the leafy greens - especially spinach, kale, chard - and the cruciferous veggies - broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage). If so, then you can experiment to see if quantity makes a difference (for instance - fine with 1 cup, but issues with more than that) or if pairing it with something else (more fats, more liquid, or something with different type of fibre) makes it work for you.

If some minor adjustments and time (give your body a couple of weeks to adjust) don't help, then please go and see your doctor. Changes in bowel movements are definitely a symptom to be taken seriously, and checked and addressed by your doctor (speaking as a colon cancer survivor), so don't be embarrassed or shy about it!

Kudos on paying attention to your body and your health - and for asking!

Edit to add: "plenty of fibre" might actually be a major contributor, especially if your intake increased quickly and dramatically when you started eating "healthier"! It takes time for bodies to adjust to consistently high amounts of fibre, so constipation is a pretty common response when there is suddenly a lot more in your diet. You might want to back down on the fibre for a bit, and then work your way up more gradually, making sure to increase water intake at the same time, to an amount that your body is happy with.

Edited by: URBANREDNEK at: 10/14/2018 (12:32)
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NIRERIN Posts: 14,633
10/14/18 11:02 A

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Fat and water are two important factors when it comes to things moving through smoothly. If you aren't getting enough of either, especially if you are increasing fiber, then things are going to be more difficult for you.

Nuts, seeds, avocado, and olive oil are all great fats. So when you say "less fatty foods" what numbers are you working with? Cutting out fast fast food meals that have 52 grams each is one thing, cutting back to 15 g total a day is another.

-google first. ask questions later.

CAPRISONYA's Photo CAPRISONYA SparkPoints: (0)
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10/14/18 10:21 A

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Sorry to gross everyone out; I'll try to be as euphemistic as possible!

I've been noticing that every time I start eating healthier--which naturally leads to eating less fatty foods--I start developing bathroom problems. Basically having a harder time when it comes time for things to leave the body, if that makes sense....

I'm getting plenty of fiber, so it's not that.

Anyone have any ideas? Am I the only one to have this issue?

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