Fluids to keep fiber company
How to keep your poop logs smooth sailing-
Marisa Crespo, our thoughtful writer and editor at Nutrition4 Kids, is always trying to engage readers with her energetic articles. She has her bachelor's degree in Nutrition and is interested in the psychology of eating as well as plant-based lifestyles. On her free time she enjoys creative writing, exploring parks and cities, and having a […]
How to Keep Those Poop Logs Sailing Smoothly
Fiber is often given the credit for keeping bowel movements healthy and regular. However, if fiber is a sailboat, water is needed to push the sailboat down the stream. In other words, the amount of fluid in your diet is also important for ensuring smooth sailing on the poop deck *wink wink*. Therefore, if you eat a well-balanced, fiber rich diet and you still have problems going "number 2," then you may need to increase the amount of liquids in your diet to get things flowing again.
Fiber keeps water in the intestine and that combination softens the stool. But you don't just have to drink pure water. Liquids become water as the nutrients get absorbed. Even some foods will result in liquids—think of watermelon as an example. The stomach and intestine separate and absorb the nutrients, then send the fiber and water downstream.
How to tell if the ship is sturdy and the tides are right
A healthy bowel movement is a smooth hotdog log stool that is easy to pass. If your average poops are soft, continuous logs, your fiber-to-water ratio is balanced. To keep your fiber-to-fluid ratio balanced, make sure you emphasize fiber rich foods such as vegetables, whole grains, beans, and fruit in the diet. Also include plenty of fluids including water, broths, tea, milk, and juicy fruits and vegetables.
Like fiber, you do not need to aim for a certain amount of fluids in the diet. The color of your urine (and ease of poop passing) will help you determine if you need more or less liquids in the diet. If your pee is clear to a pale yellow and your stools are soft, you're hydrated!
Having enough fiber AND water in the diet is important for healthy bowel movements. The best way to check if your fiber-to-water ratio is balanced is that your child's urine is clear to a pale yellow color and his or she is having easy-to-pass hotdog-like stools.
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