Laxatives, purgatives or aperients drugs are all substances that loosen stools and increase bowel movements. Many people use them to lose weight, as they are capable of speeding up the movement of the digested food through the digestive tract, hence preventing absorption of calories. Well, they might work but their overuse or continuous use can sometimes cause serious health issues.
Natural Laxatives That Can Help You
Fiber is a natural treatment and works really well in easing bowel movements. Hence all kinds of fiber rich foods act as really good laxatives.
- Chia Seeds – high in soluble fiber, containing almost 11 grams in just 1 ounce, this soluble fiber absorbs water to form a gel, which aids in forming softer stools
- Berries – mostly all varieties of berries are rich in fibre, which makes the best light laxatives. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries you can try any of these. They contain both the soluble and insoluble fibers. Soluble fibers absorb water whereas the insoluble ones do not, but move through the body intact there by increasing the bulk of stool for easier passage.
- Legumes –legumes are family of edible plants like beans, chickpeas, lentils, peas, and peanuts. They have high fibre content in them. Eating them increases the production of butyric acid, a type of short-chain fatty acid that acts as a natural laxative. It also acts as an inflammatory agent and reduces the intestinal inflammation.
- Flaxseeds – with high amount of omega-3 fatty acid and protein, flaxseeds are rich in many other nutrients as well. Flaxseeds contain a good mix of both soluble and insoluble fibre, which aids in reducing intestinal transit and time and at the same time adds bulk to the stool.
- Castor oil – with a long history of being used as a natural laxative, castor oil is produced from castor beans. After consuming this oil releases ricinoleic acid, an unsaturated fatty acid that is responsible for its laxative effect. Ricinoleic acid works by acting on certain specific receptors in the digestive tract that increases the movement of intestinal muscles to induce bowel movements.
There are many other natural laxatives also which you can try such as senna, apples, leafy greens, olive oil, rhubarb, aloe vera, oat bran, prunes, kiwifruit, and water.
A combination of various herbal ingredients the Easey Sweep Colon Cleanse, Herbal Colon Detox is also really effective in getting rid of waster from bowel and enhance your overall health and function of the stomach.
Laxatives are commonly prescribed to people suffering from constipation, laxatives help add bulk to the stool and push the waste out from the digestive tracts. There are various types of laxatives like:
- Stimulant laxatives
This type of laxative stimulates the lining of your digestive tract to help excrete the stool from the body. This type of laxative actually speeds up colonic muscle movement. They are different from other stool softeners, which work by reducing the absorption of fluids in the intestines.
- Osmotic type laxative
It causes the colon to retain more water, which ultimately increases bowel movement frequency.
- Bulk-forming laxative
These move through the intestine undigested, absorbing water and adding bulk to the stool.
- Lubricant laxative
This works by coating the surface of the stool as well as the lining of the intestine to ease bowel movements.
- Stool softeners
By allowing stool to absorb more water, this type of laxative makes them softer and easier to pass.
- Saline laxative
By drawing water from small intestine these help in promoting bowel movements.
Do Laxatives Aid Weight Loss?
Yes, laxatives assist with weight loss, however, it doesn’t help you in losing weight from body fat. They are basically meant to relieve constipation. Most people carry around 5-25 lbs of fecal waste in the colons, which typically gives us the pouch over our stomach area.
Continuous usage of over-the-counter laxatives for losing weight may ultimately harm your health. This is an unhealthy practice and its use further deteriorates your physical and mental wellbeing.
There are various side-effects of using laxatives drugs on a regular basis such as:
- Electrolyte imbalance
- Kidney failure
- GI tract damage
- Liver damage
Though there are many disadvantages of taking laxatives drugs for longer periods of time and to lose weight quickly, there are a few better options that can help you in losing weight easily. The most basic rule for all things Health & Lifestyle related is that anything that you consume in large quantities is bad for you, however, it is best to refrain from consuming things that are harmful to the body.
The length of time to lose weight is based upon many factors. Everyone is built differently and have different metabolisms, which impacts the timing to lose the extra pounds from our body. Also, understand that quick weight loss is not sustainable. Choose a diet plan that you can follow, don’t count calories, rather make your calories count! This simply means eating a high-quality calorie whole food plant-based diet. Make it a rule to have absolutely no snacking in between meals, not even a carrot or a peanut as this is a major cause of weight gain. Exercise regularly. Eating mindfully will always help you in getting rid of those extra pounds along with more natural food or even herbal laxatives that will work better with the body than a laxative drug. Take your health very seriously and do what is right for you.
You may also be interested in reading: The Importance of a Full Body Cleanse & Detox