We’ve talked about poop on the blog before. It really is one of our favourite subjects to talk about in real life (is that weird? Nah).
It’s a common subject too because… newsflash, everyone needs to poop.
It’s SUPER important and it annoys us when people get all embarrassed when you mention POO. Crap. Poop. Sh1t. Stool… whatever you wanna call it. We all do it. We all need to make sure we’re aware of our own. Your poop can tell you a whole lot of info when it comes to your health.
Let’s face it: constipation SUCKS. The opposite SUCKS too. Diarrhea. Diarrhea. Eh!
You know what’s good? When you have GOOD poop. Oh yeah! It’s like HOORAY! I POOPED! I did it!
The other month we chatted with the amazing Lynda Griparic AND she’s one of our experts we’ll interview for our upcoming Get Merry Challenge.
Our challenge is 21 days of goodness! Meal plans, recipes, support and our epic online summit! Hundreds of people are ready to start with us on 9 January so you should definitely come join the fun!
We spoke to her for 40 minutes all about poop and gut health and she had ALOT of good stuff to share. She had all the answers to ALL the questions. Plus she is just darn funny and nice and we love her.
Lynda is a qualified naturopath, nutritionist, writer and speaker with over 14 years of experience in the health industry so she knows her sh1t. Literally 😉
You know we’re all for sharing because it’s most definitely caring when it comes to the subject of poop! We want you to feel good. And feeling good totally involves pooing good.
We’ve found the most common issue people have is constipation. First of all… what is constipation? Yep, we’re getting the basics, Lynda says that constipation is…
- Incomplete emptying of the bowels. You may poop daily but often you feel dissatisfied, as if there is more to be evacuated.
- Hard, dry stools (poop) which need excessive strain to pass.
- Infrequent or unsuccessful evacuation of the colon.
- Often accompanied by other digestive symptoms such as abdominal cramping, excessive wind or bloating.
Why do we get constipated? Lynda says that it can be many of these…
- Diet – change in diet, water intake or not enough fibre/roughage.
- Sedentary lifestyle – lack of daily movement slows your metabolic processes down including digestion.
- High levels of stress, emotional trauma or suppression.
- Anatomical dysfunction – disorders or malfunction of the colon, rectum, anal sphincter, central or peripheral nervous system.
- Neglect – some neglect the urge to go out of habit.
- Anaemia – a body low in iron does not have enough energy and does not eliminate well.
- Pregnancy and after birth (up to 3 months post): the pregnancy hormone progesterone relaxes and slows down the movement of food through the intestines. This allows more time for nutrients to reach baby but tends to affect mum’s bowel movement regularity. There is also less space in the bowels from the ever expanding uterus.
- Menstruation – digestive disturbance can occur at different hormonal phases in the menstrual cycle. Common emotional symptoms experienced during this time can add to this.
- Certain medications – antidepressants, antihypertensives, analgesics, antipsychotics and iron supplements.
- Or – the presence of a virus, appendicitis, food poisoning, organic or systemic disease.
There are SO many factors to take into account. Now you know what it is and how we get it. The most important thing we all wanna know is how do we fix constipation? How can we feel better? How can we POOP better so we can all have those ‘I POOPED!’ moments. You know the ones.
Lynda has lots of advice and we LOVE that. We’re all about ACTION!
How to poop better and fix constipation…
Say what you wanna say. Holding onto past emotions, keeping them bottled up can cause stress and anxiety. This can also make us hold onto our poop! Oh no! That ain’t cool.
“In Chinese medicine, when the large intestine (AKA our garbage collector) is out of balance, it’s associated with an inability to grieve and let go. As a result, our bowel movements become sluggish and we store and recycle our waste, collecting toxins, bad breath, and all sorts of funky conditions along the way.” – Lynda
Drink more H2o. This is ALWAYS on every list of ‘how to be healthier in insert area of life‘ so maybe we should all drink more water, yah? We have some awesome easy ways to add more water to your day. It sounds so simple and it is. We just have to DO it.
Lynda also suggests: “add ¼ teaspoon of Himalayan salt to your water to enhance absorption. Fluids should be warm or room temperature. Warmth loosens, unblocks, and welcomes muscle relaxation. Cold seizes and constricts.”
Eat more fibre. We always wonder… is it fibre? Or fiber? But whatever! Eat more of it! Every meal should have some of it! Things like brussel sprouts (THIS recipe rocks), cauliflower (THIS recipe rocks), broccoli, chia seeds (this pudding), ground flax seeds, berries, and avocado. These foods help move waste through the digestive system plus they’re good for our gut bacteria! YAY! That brings us to the next top tip!
Prebiotics and probiotics rock. You gotta have both as they feed and help our good gut bacteria grow! AND this encourages healthy bowel movements. Lynda says: “good sources of prebiotics are asparagus, artichokes, green (raw) banana, and rice (that has been cooked and cooled down). Good sources of probiotics are fermented vegetables, sauerkraut, kimchi, and apple cider vinegar.”
Have a routine. Oh we LOVE this! We are big on morning rituals. If you haven’t listened to our podcast: the 6 minute ritual that will change your life… then you should! We say having a glass of warm lemon water with apple cider vinegar followed by a smoothie is the BEST way to start your day. Lynda does this too! Yay! Wanna hack your smoothie? READ THIS!
Magnesium. Seriously… we love magnesium. We have this magical spray and it is THE BEST. Magnesium helps our muscles and nervous system relax. Because our intestines are muscles, making sure our magnesium levels are up will help us all poop better. It’s a good idea to check with your naturopath on what supps to take but a spray is a great place to start… as well as epsom salt baths!
Healthy fats. DUH! Again, this pops up on EVERY ‘how to get healthy’ list. Seriously, if you haven’t got the memo yet, here it is! EAT GOOD FATS. GOOD FATS ARE GOOD FOR YOU. We are talking: avos, coconut everything, olive oil, nuts, seeds, butter, yum… butter.
Yin Yoga. We have been doing yin for the past 4 months and we FREAKING LOVE IT. It’s a slow… reallllllyyyy slow yoga. Not a flow yoga. You hold twists and poses for up to 4 minutes. It is SO relaxing… sometimes very hard. And it is the best thing ever. When we finish the class we are like ‘where did the hour go?’ and ‘bloody hell we are walking on clouds right now.’ And yes… we can confirm helps with digestion! #WINNING
Move. Don’t sit too long. Didn’t you hear? Sitting is the new smoking! Gross. Standings desks for the win! Or, if you can’t do that, set an alarm for every 45 minutes to get up and walk around. Or do a dance or something fun like that. Sitting in one position too long compresses our digestive organs and slows it all down. No thanks!
Herbs and spices. Seriously, herbs and spices are magical! They taste so darn good and do awesome stuff for health and wellbeing! Lynda gave us the breakdown on which ones to go for! These help with digestion and elimination and nourish our liver, kidneys, stomach and spleen (all the organs that help eliminate! YEEEEW! Go organs!).
- black pepper
- coriander seeds
Lynda has a tea we’ve tried that has lots of these in it! It’s so yum! We renamed it Poop Tea. It’s not called that, it’s actually called Better Me Tea which sounds way nicer and probably better branding than Poop Tea.
Ok, there you have it. The BEST ways to fix constipation. If you do 1, 2 or all of these things we know your digestion is going to improve (if it doesn’t… book in with a naturopath so you can work on it together!).
Oh yeah! Here’s to good poop and good health and good VIBES!
Emma + Carla
P.s if you want more info like this check out the #GetMerry Challenge HERE!