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Coconut Oil: Worth It?

constipation IBS-C anxiety digestion gastroparesis coconut oil constella

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#1 Effexorrx

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 10:01 AM

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Hello Everyone,

 

I introduced myself somewhat in another thread, and wanted to ask if anyone has tried or had any success with coconut oil for constipation, particularly IBS-C constipation.  I've read quite a few articles about coconut oil lately, and while most seem to rely on anecdotal evidence, it looks like many people are using it in moderation to help relieve constipation and make the process of "going" (euphemism, yes, but I'm not sure how specific to be yet) a little easier.  From what I've read, it's the medium-chain tryglycerides that help coat the intestines and colon, both softening stool and making transit less difficult.

 

I've also read it's "pure poison" due to the amount of trans fats, which is why I've started using half a teaspoon in hot lemon water at night (I drink A LOT of water, up to around 5 liters a day).  However, there's an argument afoot, due to the half-baked science of every opinion that is offered.  It's poison, it's good for you, it helps constipation, it's really doesn't, use three tablespoons, use very little, it's great for your skin, it's going to clog your arteries, it can help candida overgrowth, wait, we're not sure...  Quite a few contradictions.

 

I'm already on Constella, but with anxiety and other psych issues, along with gastroparesis from an eating disorder (I take domperidone for that one), I can still use all the help I can get, without harming myself.  I've received a lot of advice regarding Constella, which I've been on for two years now after taking a half-year break to recover from the ED during which I was weened off of every laxative product precribed, including Constella for IBS-C, which was not regarded as a real disorder/illness by the hospital I was in for four months.  However, Constella works differently from laxatives per se, although I still have concerns, but yet feel lucky that it's available for me, and it's certainly not a stimulant laxative that works on parastalsis.

 

Adding the coconut oil, half a teaspoon in the evening as I mentioned, seems worth a shot.

 

Can anyone offer or provide advice, experience, or information regarding the use of coconut oil in moderation for IBS-C constipation.  I've only been using it for a few days, and have no idea if a tiny bit of calm after finding this site has helped or if it's actually working to improve digestion, transit, and constipation.

 

Any responses would be appreciated.

 

With gratudude, 

Effexorrx



#2 flossy

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 11:10 AM

I've never tried coconut oil for constipation, BUT pretty much everything I have ever tried - and I've tried a lot! - is on the bottom of this post, with reviews. Perhaps you'll find something that you'll want to try? (Click below link to read):

 

http://www.ibsgroup....-can-recommend/

 

Good luck & keep us posted!



#3 Effexorrx

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 11:43 AM

Flossy, for your perserverance, I genuinely salute you.  And, I really do appreciate the list you provided.  Honestly, I'd like to reach a point where I don't need anything for condition, but, unforunately, it's a condition.  I'm interested in your views on fiber, as that was part of my Eating Disorder: my GI and his nutritionist told me, point blank, to stop eating meat, stop eating bread, stop eating anything and everything that had a remote potential to contribute to constipation.  My diet ended up becoming so limited I existed on roughly 500 calories a day made up, mainly, of prunes (they had me eating 47 a day), peas (high in fiber), and every laxative under the sun, moon, and possibly the core of the earth, along with some Fiber cereal that I can't even look at now.  I was, and remain, afraid to eat, although I eat everything now, as per my ED instruction, and my GI is reluctant to put me on any of the IBS-C diets due to my history.  I no longer weigh 73 lbs, but my weight has dropped due to debilitating anxiety (which is also part -- only part -- of the reason I left a Ph.D. programme only two chapters away from finishing my dissertation). 

 

Back to fiber.  It's still a mainstay, although through things like oatmeal, cooked vegtables, whole wheat bread, and kiwis (I eat a lot of kiwis).  I was wondering, because my GI really won't say much other than "increase you fiber!" if it's actually the healthy solution doctors and GIs think it is, along with nutritionists.  What it seems to do to me, along with the Constella, is bloat me up and slow things down. 

 

From your list, I noticed that this seems to be something that happens to a lot of us.  I'd be interested in your views on the subject.  Like I said, I wish I didn't have to take anything and just eat freely, without fear, but, right now, it's not happening.  I eat, but the fear is terrible (as it is with the Constella, which helps, so I'm not stopping that one, either, at the 290 mcg).  I suppose, lengthy though my response happens to be, I'm asking, like I said, for your experience and what you know of the general consensus among those dealing with IBS-C, if you're willing to offer any insight.

 

Thanks for response re. coconut oil.  It's my own trial, but who the hell knows.  Trial, error, trial, error, trial, dammit.

 

Wishing you the best,

Effe 

I've never tried coconut oil for constipation, BUT pretty much everything I have ever tried - and I've tried a lot! - is on the bottom of this post, with reviews. Perhaps you'll find something that you'll want to try? (Click below link to read):

 

http://www.ibsgroup....-can-recommend/

 

Good luck & keep us posted!



#4 annie7

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 11:58 AM

omg--47 prunes a day!!!!   all prunes ever did for me was give me gas gas gas. 

 

yes the gastro docs do like to recommend fiber and fiber can help with C  IF the cause of the C is a lack of fiber to begin with.  but for a lot of us, especially for those of us with slow transit constipation,  fiber just makes things worse.   if your colon is already moving slowly, dumping a lot of fiber in there only slows it down all the more.   my first gastro  doc told me to eat 41 grams of fiber a day!!  i did that and i only got worse.   i found out that i did much better with a low fiber diet..

 

here is an article about fiber and constipation:

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC3435786/

 

i never tried coconut oil. i did try taking a tablespoon of olive oil a day but that didn't help.  good luck with everything.


these are just my own thoughts. for expert medical advice please contact a health care professional.


#5 flossy

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 01:26 PM

Flossy, for your perserverance, I genuinely salute you.  And, I really do appreciate the list you provided.  Honestly, I'd like to reach a point where I don't need anything for condition, but, unforunately, it's a condition.  I'm interested in your views on fiber, as that was part of my Eating Disorder: my GI and his nutritionist told me, point blank, to stop eating meat, stop eating bread, stop eating anything and everything that had a remote potential to contribute to constipation.  My diet ended up becoming so limited I existed on roughly 500 calories a day made up, mainly, of prunes (they had me eating 47 a day), peas (high in fiber), and every laxative under the sun, moon, and possibly the core of the earth, along with some Fiber cereal that I can't even look at now.  I was, and remain, afraid to eat, although I eat everything now, as per my ED instruction, and my GI is reluctant to put me on any of the IBS-C diets due to my history.  I no longer weigh 73 lbs, but my weight has dropped due to debilitating anxiety (which is also part -- only part -- of the reason I left a Ph.D. programme only two chapters away from finishing my dissertation). 

 

Back to fiber.  It's still a mainstay, although through things like oatmeal, cooked vegtables, whole wheat bread, and kiwis (I eat a lot of kiwis).  I was wondering, because my GI really won't say much other than "increase you fiber!" if it's actually the healthy solution doctors and GIs think it is, along with nutritionists.  What it seems to do to me, along with the Constella, is bloat me up and slow things down. 

 

From your list, I noticed that this seems to be something that happens to a lot of us.  I'd be interested in your views on the subject.  Like I said, I wish I didn't have to take anything and just eat freely, without fear, but, right now, it's not happening.  I eat, but the fear is terrible (as it is with the Constella, which helps, so I'm not stopping that one, either, at the 290 mcg).  I suppose, lengthy though my response happens to be, I'm asking, like I said, for your experience and what you know of the general consensus among those dealing with IBS-C, if you're willing to offer any insight.

 

Thanks for response re. coconut oil.  It's my own trial, but who the hell knows.  Trial, error, trial, error, trial, dammit.

 

Wishing you the best,

Effe 

 

That's way way way too much fiber. Try no fiber at all. Just eat normal foods.

 

Also, there is just so much doctors can do about chronic constipation, as I'm sure you are figuring out.

 

Read this when you have the time, it has the bulk of my knowledge of IBS-C:

 

http://www.ibsgroup....tion-aka-ibs-c/

 

Good luck & keep us posted!



#6 Effexorrx

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 06:13 PM

Yup, 47 prunes per day, 10 litres of water, more laxative products than I can count, and a fiber-only diet.  I felt like I was losing my mind, and I've told you I nearly died from the results thrown upon my body and mind.  The article you provided, I noticed, was written in 2012, so I'm wondering why, six years later, and probably for years to come, the push towards fiber is so strong in the gastro community.  I wonder if it's tied to the food industry in some way (I'm not a conspiracy theorist, I just notice trends, usually academic, but often in actual rather than theoretical life as well).

 

I may yet try the no to low fiber diet.  After what I've been through -- like all of you -- it takes me awhile to put anything into action, as the risk of further illness is difficult to bear.  I barely (if at all) trust doctors, but the advice I'm getting those who comment here...I'm blown away.  

 

Thank you very much.

omg--47 prunes a day!!!!   all prunes ever did for me was give me gas gas gas. 

 

yes the gastro docs do like to recommend fiber and fiber can help with C  IF the cause of the C is a lack of fiber to begin with.  but for a lot of us, especially for those of us with slow transit constipation,  fiber just makes things worse.   if your colon is already moving slowly, dumping a lot of fiber in there only slows it down all the more.   my first gastro  doc told me to eat 41 grams of fiber a day!!  i did that and i only got worse.   i found out that i did much better with a low fiber diet..

 

here is an article about fiber and constipation:

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC3435786/

 

i never tried coconut oil. i did try taking a tablespoon of olive oil a day but that didn't help.  good luck with everything.



#7 Effexorrx

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Posted 03 September 2018 - 06:14 PM

 

That's way way way too much fiber. Try no fiber at all. Just eat normal foods.

 

Also, there is just so much doctors can do about chronic constipation, as I'm sure you are figuring out.

 

Read this when you have the time, it has the bulk of my knowledge of IBS-C:

 

http://www.ibsgroup....tion-aka-ibs-c/

 

Good luck & keep us posted!

 

I will read it, all of it.  thank you so much.  I'm incredibly exhausted right now, so my response will be short, but know you're appreciated, all of you.

 

thank you,

Effe


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#8 Effexorrx

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 06:10 PM

Just a quick update on my organic, virgin coconut oil experiment: it seems so far, except for one day that merely could have been a single fluke, to be along the lines of olive oil.  Basically, if it works for you, great; you're very lucky.  For me, it seems to make the constipation slighty worse, providing none of the lubricating or softening elements that have been touted.  Again, I'm not sure how much of an experiment this has been, as I've been using a teaspoon of the stuff for about a week in warm lemon water, but it's not, from what I can tell, any kind of magic bullet that works wonders.

 

Everyone is different, I know, but I think the comparison to olive oil may be right for me: doesn't do much, if anything, and, at worst, makes the C more difficult.  Worth a shot, as it's all natural.

 

Still freaked out about Constella, but, again, it's all I've got for now, until I get the courage to try new things.  Been on that two years (after having had it stopped while recovering from an eating disorder that was actually a mainfestation of IBS-C and medical mismanagement by doctors, although I did contribute), and I tend not to believe that something which works won't ultimately harm me (again, is this just my terrified mind or actual fact, don't know, can't tell, have no idea).  However, I'll stick with the Constella and feel grateful it's available to me.  Because chronic, debilitating IBS-C that has, along with other things, destroyed my entire life is hard enough to live with by itself, let alone without a medication that does help.  Having ANY doctor beat up on me because I'm on Constella when my GI (this one is pretty good, although she tends to push probiotics too hard) and tell me it's wrong of bad or I'm just not strong enough hurts as much as as IBS, and ultimately makes it worse.  Lord, they scare me, these doctors who just don't get it cos they don't themselves got it (IBS-C, I mean).

 

Best to all.  I really do wish you all well and pray that we'll see some kind of forward movement on discovering why the hell IBS in any form is ultimately so difficult to treat.

 

Take care,

Effe.



#9 Effexorrx

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 06:26 PM

*sentence above should read:  "when my GI...supports the use of constella..."   It's other doctors, psych docs and GPs, who are against Constella.  Sorry for the parentetical loss of my subject matter due to an overstimulated brain.



#10 flossy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 06:44 PM

I hope you stopped your high fiber diet. Again, if extra fiber doesn't help try no extra fiber at all.

 

What are you eating now?


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#11 Effexorrx

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 07:08 PM

I hope you stopped your high fiber diet. Again, if extra fiber doesn't help try no extra fiber at all.

 

What are you eating now?

I'm still eating the same things -- still lots of kiwis -- because I'm not sure what fiber to cut out and what fiber to keep in.  I know you say no fiber at all, but (bear with me) I'm really scared.  It may sound weak and pathetic, and I do believe I'm eating too much fiber, but fear really is a driving factor for me, as I've beent through every kind of medical mismanagement possible (i.e., the IBS-C was looked upon once by a psych doctor as a "bowel obsession" and I was formed involuntarily into a psych hospital for 18 treatments of ECT, which he said would work to break me of said bowel obsession, and this was in 2014).  

 

I'm dead serious: I was diagnosed with IBS-C by a GI, and the result was institutionalization and forced ECT because I had a "bowel obsession."  I was also threatened with more meds, which caused impactions, but refused, hence the extra ECT treatments (it's supposed to be a course of twelve...I got 18 for non-compliance).

 

It may not make sense, but changing anything takes huge amounts of courage, which I don't have in abundance right now.



#12 flossy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 07:47 PM

I understand, but you have to remember: Ultimately these are your decisions, so even if you are following the advice of doctors, you choose to listen to them. The trouble is they seem to be doing more harm then good, yes? That's why you're here.

 

I also know that most people do not usually value free advice, but that's what you're getting from me.

 

Regardless, whenever you feel brave enough, try eating just eat normal foods. 

 

"Like what?" you ask.

 

For breakfast, I normally have a bowel of my soup...

 

https://www.ibsgroup...the-tummy-area/

 

...every morning and then a bowl of chocolate flavored cereal. 

 

I usually eat my main meal of the day between 2 and 4 PM. (This is also when I take my Intestinal Formula # 1.) Usually I have pizza, chicken or pasta. Sometimes other foods, but it's typically one (or more) of those.

 

At night? Another bowl of soup and about a half bowl of cereal. I'm set until tomorrow.

 

Note: I can't eat much raw fruit/veggies because of the fiber content, but I get enough healthy food from my soup so I'm not worried about it.

 

Anyhow, there are some ideas for ya.

 

I don't know what else to tell ya, but good luck.


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#13 saira

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Posted 07 September 2018 - 12:07 PM

Have you tried upping the dose of coconut oil? I have used it as well as olives oil and I think the olive oil helped when I put it in vegetable juice along with chia seeds. I don't do this anymore because the oils give me acid reflux now. The coconut oil may work too if I took more than a tablespoon maybe. I heard someone say MCT oil helps them. MCT oil is I think a little stronger than coconut oil. I used it a couple times I think it helped a bit but again I got acid reflux. I am not saying it will work for everyone because everyone is different. It is about experimenting to find something that works because sooner or later the laxatives will stop working.

#14 Effexorrx

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Posted 08 September 2018 - 09:24 AM

Hello Saira,

 

Thank you for your response, and I thank Flossy, too.  I'll try upping the coconut oil and check out the MCT oil.  However, since Constella/Linzness is not a laxative (it has properties generally comparable to a stool softener, but isn't classified as a laxatives by either doctors or pharmacists, and is considered safe for long-term use), and since I've been off all stimulant laxatives for well over two years, I don't believe it'll just stop working.  The bowel is one of the laziest organs in the body.  I agree, finding something that works is essential, but I also find that, generally, coming onto this group scares the hell out of me.  I'm trying to get support for my own situation, and am more than willing to support others -- I feel nothing but empathy, especially having gone through it all for many years myself -- and while I've received some support, I've also received what I'd refer to as frightening information, and a willingness by others, if I'm unable at this time to try everything suggested right away, to just give up on me.  I've had that my entire life, and so I'll be leaving this community.  Hearing "laxatives will fail" (yes, I've been through that with stimulants, hence not using them anymore, though I do not look down upon anyone who does use them and regards them as safe, which they very well may be, according to the more recent evidence) and hearing "I don't know what else to tell ya" sounds dismissive.  My God, I've tried so much I'm exhausted.  And I appreciate every response, every one of them, but feel this group may be more harmful to me than not.  

 

IBS of any sort is terrible, and I wish you all well, and pray you wish me well, too.  

 

I simply cannot handle this right now, but, again, appreciate all responses I've received.  If Constella fails, I know there are other medications that may work, though will be hard to afford.  I'm just trying to survive this, and will look elsewhere. 

 

Still, thank you all.

 

Best wishes and much empathy for the struggle,

Effe.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: constipation, IBS-C, anxiety, digestion, gastroparesis, coconut oil, constella


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