Ask an expert

14 Jul 2005

Pls help. I need to take laxatives or else nothing happens. Is there a way that I can get my colon back to working normally again. I realised this week that I am actually causing more harm than anything else by taking these laxatives. I am very weight conscious and weigh myself every day and if I get on the scale and weigh a little more and then realise that I haven't gone to the loo for a day or two then I take a laxative. Yesterday I read on the site that some people just do not go everyday. How long is normal not to go. I read yesterday that my dieet is very important and I have started eating wholeweat bread, yogurt etc but also read that it won't get sorted out over night and that it can take up to 2 weeks. I read about Interflora which helps the digestive system, should I take this and what is AgioBulk. Is this something I can take which will help me with the constipation but won't cause problems again. Pls tell me what I can use to help my colon get back to working by itself again.
Answer 607 views

01 Jan 0001

Dear Lizelle
Firstly it is completely normal for individuals to only have a motion once or twice a week. You need to determine what your body's biorhythm requires. By forcing your colon to work when it does not want to because your mind say 'I have gained a kg and this is due to not having a bowel motion' you are probably interfering with your own biology. Stop linking your weight to your bowel movements. The weight you lose when you take a laxative is in any case water, not really bulk. So listen to your own body for a change and if your metabolism allows you to have normal bowel movements every 2-3 days (no straining or hard, dry stools), then relax and allow your body to dictate its own tempo. If you clicked on 'Diet' at the top of this page and then on '‘You are what you eat' and "Healthy GI tract' you will have accessed the articles that explain how to increase your dietary fibre intake - follow these instructions. Also read about probiotics and try taking 'Bifidoflora or Bifidoforte' (buy at health shop) to normalise your bowel motions. If you do not manage to have a normal, soft bowel motion about 2-3 times a week you can try Agiolax which is a mild laxative which does not disrupt your normal peristalsis. One of the most important factors in spastic colon is stress and anxiety. From what you write it appears that you are tense and worried about things, so do try and relax. Start doing yoga or deep breathing to combat the stress because excessive stress makes the bowel movements either speed up or slow down.
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
32% - 9476 votes
68% - 20322 votes