You’re not alone if you have been experiencing bouts of constipation during the month of Ramadan. Research shows that during Ramadan, those who fast may see significant increases in constipation, as well as bloating, heaviness or fullness.
That’s because your bowel movement is directly influenced by what you put and don’t put in your mouth. And since you’re eating less now that your window eating is limited, it’s possible you aren’t getting enough of the water or nutrients essential to keep your bowel movements regular.

Here is what you can do to keep things flowing:

  1. Up your fiber intake – aim for at least 25 to 30 g a day. Dietary fiber helps the digestive system function properly by both adding bulk to your stool and by making sure food passes through your digestive tract with ease. From sweet potatoes and broccoli to dried fruits, there are a ton of foods high in fiber you can add to your diet.
  2. Hydrate, a lot! – hydration is essential for bowel movement since fiber is only effective if you’re getting enough fluids in your diet.
  3. Drink coffee – Coffee can often cause the urge to have bowel movement in as little as four minutes after consumption. While its mechanism of action is not completely understood, coffee is known to stimulate the receptors in the colon to contract.
  4. Get active – Physical activity increases blood flow to all body organs including the gut and stimulates bowel motility, which in turn decreases the amount of time stool is in the colon, as well as the amount of water absorbed from the stool, meaning the stool is less dry and hard and much easier to pass.