Is watermelon good for constipation?
Constipation is defined as having less than 3 bowel movements in a week, which may be associated with straining to defecate, the passage of hard stools, and tenesmus. This condition can significantly affect your quality of life.
Constipation is a common problem. Approximately 14% of the general population complain of chronic constipation.
Abnormal bowel movement can be due to a lot of different reasons: consuming a small amount of fiber, being dehydrated, underlying gastrointestinal disease, etc. But most commonly constipation is caused by poor diet and insufficient exercise.
Diet does play a huge role in preventing and relieving slowed bowel activity.
A high-fiber diet consisting of vegetables and fruits can be a huge relief for people suffering from constipation.
Also avoiding triggers like alcohol, dairy, meat, and so on is mandatory. If these didn’t help laxatives are prescribed.
Now let’s examine whether watermelon can be beneficial for constipation or not.
Is Watermelon Good for constipation? Does it help or harm?
This berry has a unique beneficial effect on the functioning of the digestive system. That is why it is recommended to use watermelon for constipation, as well as to cleanse the body from toxic substances.
Of course, it is important to know when to stop. Before using watermelon for medicinal purposes, you need to consult a doctor.
Why is watermelon good for constipation?
Watermelons – as their name suggests – contains a lot of water (around 93 percent of it is water).
Water is important for the digestive process, so staying well hydrated is in itself an important tip against constipation.
Watermelon can act as a laxative.
The more fluid you intake, the more likely you are to visit the toilet for “number 2” often, if you don’t like drinking liquids, you can just simply increase fluid intake by consuming watermelons.
Watermelon has Fiber
As already mentioned, fiber helps maintain regular bowel movements and is beneficial during constipation. Although the pulp of watermelon (due to its 92% water content) does not have as much as in other high-fiber foods like beans, broccoli, whole grains, apples, and so on.
It still has enough fiber to help your bowels work.
Besides that, what interesting to note is that watermelon’s rind is really rich in fiber and is consumed by people, in different forms.
The rind is the outer skin of watermelon and it is completely safe and edible!
Some recipes use watermelon rind to make juices, smoothies, and even pickled forms.
So if you want to make of use all benefits of watermelon you should definitely try the rind.
Here are the recipes you can try:
Take your vitamins and minerals
The beneficial effect of watermelon on the intestinal tract can be due to the presence of a large amount of pantothenic- also known as Vitamin B5 and folic acid- Vitamin B9.
These nutrients influence improvement in metabolic processes in the body and restoration of normal bowel function.
To strengthen this argument here’s – a study by Pubmed, that indicates the effectiveness of pantothenic acid for the treatment of post-operative intestinal ileus,
This proves that it has beneficial effects on bowel activity
Ripe watermelon pulp contains a lot of magnesium and potassium, these trace elements restore electrolyte balance, and thus help to eliminate constipation too.
Magnesium is important for bile secretion and cholesterol deactivation, for binding oxalic acid salts (oxalates), it’s necessary for normalizing intestinal motility.
We shouldn’t forget Vitamin C- ascorbic acid, which is abundant in watermelon, can really have a great impact on constipation.
A very interesting study performed with pre-school children in Hong Kong states that “Constipated children had significantly lower intakes of dietary fiber and micronutrients including vitamin C, folate and magnesium than non-constipated counterparts which were attributable to under-consumption of plant foods.”
Therefore the Fiber with help of powerful nutrients like Vitamin C, Vitamin B9 – Folic acid, and Magnesium can prevent constipation. All of those nutrients are present in watermelon.
What are alternatives to relieve constipation?
According to a Gastroenterologist, even though watermelon is known to be beneficial for relieving constipation, there are other more effective natural ways to help with your inactive intestines, that as Prunes, Kiwi, Apples, Pears, Figs.
All of them have a higher content of fiber and other nutrients like sorbitol and phenolic compounds that have gastrointestinal benefits and can work really fast.
Watermelon can act as a natural laxative and help you relieve constipation, The main explanation behind watermelons helping you “go” is their rich water content. So if it’s summer season, watermelons are everywhere and you have trouble defecating, feel free to enjoy bites and wait for it to work.