31 videos

Topic summary contributed by volunteer(s): Dan

The elimination of all dairy products may be a cure for childhood constipation. Americans, and especially New Yorkers, are among the most constipated people on earth. Not surprisingly, then, constipation is the most common gastrointestinal complaint in the United States. One-third of preschoolers in the United States may be constipated in part due to the under-consumption of fiber-containing (whole plant) foods.

The minimum fecal output should be about half a pound per day for cancer prevention. Larger bowel movements have also been associated with lower rates of appendicitis, colon cancer, constipation, and diverticulitis. Those who eat plant-based diets, on average, have the healthiest stools and are the most regular. This may be due to the fiber found in plants. On a traditional African diet, which consists largely of plants, constipation is essentially nonexistent.

In addition to fiber, appropriate water intake could stave off constipation. Prunes may be especially helpful in treating constipation. On a plant-based, fiber-rich diet, people should be able to have an easily passable bowel movement after every meal.

Women who have more frequent bowel movements appear to be at lower risk for breast cancer possibly because bile acids absorbed from our intestines concentrate in the breast and have an estrogen-like tumor promoting effect.

Certain artificial sweeteners can have a laxative effect. In Latin America, greta, made almost of pure lead, is alarmingly used to treat constipation.

The information on this page has been compiled from the research presented in the videos listed. Sources for each video can be found by going to the video’s page and clicking on the Sources Cited tab.

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