I am immensely intrigued by how many people click on some old blogs I wrote. Even when I write a new blog about something relevant to the newest science on weight loss, these blogs get fewer clicks than my old blogs on bananas and belly fat, and constipation.
Bananas and their ability to cause belly fat is a myth that just won’t die. Bananas have no effect on belly fat. They don’t make bellies any fatter than any other food and they do not specifically trim fat from your belly.
Bananas are good food. They’re sweet and satisfying and they are naturally low in calories while providing a variety of important nutrients to promote good health. They are not juicy, so when comparing them to other fruits they have a higher energy density.
That’s a scientific way of saying a serving of a juicier fruit has more water and therefore fewer calories than a serving of a banana. Indeed, back when Weight Watchers made members count their fruit serving, 1/2 of a banana was considered one serving.
I endorse eating bananas as part of a healthy weight loss plan. If you freeze them they even make a delicious, low-calorie dessert. They are great for breakfast grilled with a bit of brown sugar sprinkled on them.
What do bananas have to do with poop? If you stop eating bananas to lose weight you’re not likely to have problems with constipation as a result. If you give up bananas and cut carbohydrates to lose weight, you’re probably going to experience constipation.
Constipation is a common problem for a lot of people who start any weight loss program but the low carb diets are the most common cause. Maybe it’s just a result of a big change in eating habits. There are other causes too including not eating enough and eating too much fiber. If you don’t keep yourself hydrated you’re likely to experience bloaty, crampy, extended time on the toilet with nothing to flush for all your efforts.
Dieting and constipation much get googled so much because people would rather not talk about the trouble they’re having with their poop. I understand that. I don’t really want to hear about people’s difficulty with pooping.
The unfortunate thing about the reluctance to talk about diet-induced constipation is how it leaves sufferers thinking it’s a problem only they are having. It’s true misery loves company, but there’s more to it than that. When you discover you’re dealing with a common problem it becomes less overwhelming. There’s strength in numbers.
If you’re losing weight but having difficulty passing bowel movements, don’t worry. It’s common and temporary. There are things you can do to get relief.
- Drink more water
- Eat regularly scheduled meals (avoid skipping meals)
- Try to target daily fiber consumption to 35 – 40 grams daily
- Step up physical activity. Try to get at least 250 steps during each waking hour
- Eat more ripe bananas