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Health Tip: Why am I Constipated?

- Constipation often is defined as producing fewer than three bowel movements in a week. Other symptoms may include producing small, hard stools; and significant straining during bowel movements.

The University of Michigan Health System lists these common causes of constipation:

  • Insufficient fiber in the diet.
  • Dehydration.
  • Not getting enough exercise.
  • Lifestyle factors, including taking certain medications, pregnancy, travel or aging.
  • Not acting on the urge to produce a bowel movement.
  • Having conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, a blockage of the colon or rectum, or certain systemic diseases.
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Posted: April 2008