With their omega-3 fatty acid content and high amount of protein

With their omega-3 fatty acid content and high amount of protein

flaxseeds are rich in many nutrients that make them a healthy addition to any diet (18Trusted Source, 19).

Not only that, but flaxseeds also have natural laxative properties and are an effective treatment for both constipation and diarrhea.

A 2015 animal study showed that flaxseed oil increased stool frequency in guinea pigs. It also had an anti-diarrheal effect and was able to reduce diarrhea by up to 84% (20Trusted Source).

Flaxseeds contain a good mix of both soluble and insoluble fiber, which helps reduce intestinal transit time and add bulk to stool (21Trusted Source).

One tablespoon (10 grams) of flaxseeds provides 2 grams of insoluble fiber, plus 1 gram of soluble fiber (19).

2. Kefir
Kefir is a fermented milk product.

It contains probiotics, a type of beneficial gut bacteria with a variety of health benefits, including improving immune function and boosting digestive health (22Trusted Source).

Consuming probiotics through either food or supplements can increase regularity while also improving stool consistency and speeding up intestinal transit (23Trusted Source).

Kefir, in particular, has been shown to add moisture and bulk to stool (24Trusted Source).

A 2014 study looked at the effects of kefir on 20 participants with constipation.

After consuming 17 ounces (500 ml) per day for four weeks, participants had an increase in stool frequency, improvements in consistency and a decrease in laxative use (25Trusted Source).

3. Castor Oil
Produced from castor beans, castor oil has a long history of use as a natural laxative.

After castor oil is consumed, it releases ricinoleic acid, a type of unsaturated fatty acid that’s responsible for its laxative effect.

Ricinoleic acid works by activating a specific receptor in the digestive tract that increases the movement of the intestinal muscles to induce a bowel movement (26Trusted Source).

One study showed that castor oil was able to alleviate constipation symptoms by softening stool consistency, reducing straining during defecation and decreasing the feeling of incomplete evacuation (27Trusted Source).

You can find castor oil at many health food stores and online.

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