Bowel school 3: Your stomach likes order and routine

Constipation – everyone knows how tough it can be. Especially when traveling, the stomach is fond of shutting down all operations, resisting food that’s prepared in a different way or consumed at different times. Does your stomach like traveling?


Constipation can be a hazard anywhere. The stomach (or intestine) is a creature of habit and prefers order and routine. It reacts to any upset or major change of routine.

Tips for avoiding constipation

There are some tricks to avoid constipation.

  • Dietary fiber – At the pharmacy, you can purchase and take dietary fiber one day prior to or the same as your trip. Most people dissolve dietary in water. Fiber can also be found in plums.
  • Water – Always drink water to soften the stool. If your nose feels dry, you probably need to drink more water – the air conditioning in airplanes will absorb moisture, so be sure to hydrate.
  • Go with the flow – If possible, go to the toilet when your bowel needs to, rather than waiting. Don't hold off. Future trips to the toilet may become more difficult.
  • Do your normal exercise – more will unfortunately not make the constipation abate sooner.
  • Rock-squat – Another tip when you are sitting on the toilet stool is to "rock-squat": bend your upper body forward over your thighs then straighten up again. Repeat a couple of times.

Medical care can help you

If the tips above do not work, do not hesitate to seek help. A health care professional will most likely recommend some form of laxative and a change of diet.

If the symptoms persist and these steps fail to relieve a sluggish bowel, transanal irrigation (TAI) may be an option. Ask your Health care professionals for more information about this therapy.

The intestine and well-being

Supporting the digestive system with a good diet is always recommended, even if the disorders you experience require other solutions. Current research supports the importance of the intestinal health as a foundation for health. 

Download tips on food and weight

Author: Anna Westberg
Source: ”Gut” by Giulia Enders

Topics: Health, Bowel dysfunction, constipation