Laxatives for Weight Loss

Written by Sky Taylor, Diet Bites

Why using laxatives to produce weight loss isn't a good thing.

Using laxatives to lose weight? What are you doody-ing to yourself! More damage than you might possibly know…

"In with the good, out with the bad."

That seems like a pretty logical statement, doesn't it?

But not when the topic is laxatives. 

Taking laxatives on a regular basis is like planting thousands of tiny explosives in your intestinal track. Intestinal abuse is what it is.

How do laxatives work?

Well, sometimes not at all. And when they do, it can be pretty explosive. You can even become dependent upon them 'to get the job done'. Even those laxatives which promise won't cause cramping are unpredictable at best.

Yes, there are times when they are necessary or when they are prescribed by the doctor. They may be necessary to perform a certain procedure - thus cleaning out the track is necessitated.

This is much different than using them as a solution for weight loss. Any form of weight that doesn't register on the bathroom scales isn't 'fat loss' rather precious 'fluid loss' or more commonly referred to as 'water loss'.

Overuse of these types of stimulants can create a severe imbalance within the body's electrolytes - sodium, potassium and calcium.

When this type of situation develops where athletes and long-distance runners are involved, even these individuals - who are at the upper tier of physical endurance and fitness may find themselves in a life-threatening condition.

Types of Laxatives

Laxatives are available in several forms. Bulk laxatives are considered the safest because they act similarly to a sponge, absorbing fluids within the body, thus expanding to increase the moisture content of the stool. The increased bulk also encourages activity in the intestinal track.

Suppositories and enemas help stimulate waves of contractions in the intestinal muscles while stool softeners add liquid to the bowels resulting in easier passage.

Constipation & Laxatives

Taking a laxative regularly to relieve constipation will only worsen your condition.

A better remedy is accomplished by drinking sufficient amounts of water, getting critical fiber into your diet, and maintaining an active lifestyle.

Try the 50% or more fiber cereals such as Fiber One and All Bran. A double serving of these ultra low calorie cereals will help your system get to moving with success.

One serving size contains a mere 50-60 calories and you can enjoy the cereal with skim or reduced fat milk - so the caloric value is less that 100 calories per serving.

As to drinking water throughout your day to alleviate constipation woes, the current recommendation is six to eight cups (not glasses) per day. The food that you consume throughout your day also contains amounts of water and counts towards the six to eight cups.

Losing Weight via Laxatives

This is better known as 'The Big Purge Syndrome'. The abuser is putting considerable amounts of irritation on the bowel. As a visual, try tossing a pinch of baking soda into a tablespoon of vinegar. That's a laxative effect on your intestines. Poor intestines.

And as referenced above, any register of weight loss on the scales equals water, not fat loss.

Laxatives & Drug Interactions

Laxatives can interfere with several medications, causing them to be less effective or inactive. Continuous use of laxatives can cause gastric upset, total dependency to achieve a bowel movement, in addition to possible toxic effects.

Taking all these serious risks into consideration, the safest and best way to lose weight - or maintain your current weight, is through smart thinking - smart eating - smart activity.


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