Hormonal changes during pregnancy relax muscles – including those of the intestines. The more lax muscles mean a slower peristalsis – leading to sluggish bowel movements.
Here are a few tips that will help your digestion and elimination:
- Eat a high-fiber diet to help facilitate bowel movement
- Reduce in milk and meat products in the diet
- Supplement vitamin B1, C and E
- Ensure adequate fluid intake
- Include oat, prunes and flaxseed in the diet. Flaxseed can be ground and sprinkled on food (such as oatmeal) – it adds a subtle, nutty flavor.
- Include probiotics in the diet. Probiotics – the “good bacteria” – helps maintain a healthy gut flora, which aids in healthy digestion and elimination. Good sources of probiotics are yogurt (looks for labels that says “live culture), sauerkrauts and kimchi.
- Use a nonirritant laxative, fructo-oligosaccharides powder – it can help relieve severe cases.
- Incorporate movement and exercise - it strengthens the abdominal muscles
Herbs with laxative actions such as senna should be avoided – although they are natural substances, they have a very strong action (a very cool constitution and “downward energy”) and could create dependency.