Let me first start off by saying I am in no way an expert in nutrition or exercise. I'm just a normal 30 yr old guy who has been dealing with constipation for years. Thought, I'd provide some details about my experience in case there's someone out there that it might help.
I've always had constipation problems but it's been getting worse over the last 5 years. As it got worse, I always threw more fiber and probiotics at it, and they seemed to help. I know almost everyone here will get angry when I say this, but anytime I consumed large amounts of protein (meat, eggs, cheese, shakes, bars) my constipation would just get worse and worse. It angered me so much because I know how improtant protein was to building muscle, so I literally tried everything pea protein, rice protien, hemp protein, isolates, concentrates, egg whites, etc all to no avail. It all constipated me.
A lot of people's responses is "it's normal to go every couple days". And believe me, I would have no problem with this, if I didn't feel bad. But if I go two days without having a bowel movement, not only do I felt physically bad, I'm just simply not happy. I feel horrible and my energy is gone.
Over the years I've eaten everything and tried all supplements. Prunes did the trick for a long time but then I had to eat more and more for them to work. I've done chicory root, veggies, salads, fruits, insane amounts of high fiber cerals, seeds, nuts, metamucil etc. Finally, I settled on psyllium husk which got me through all of my issues. I used psyllium everyday for 3 years and it worked fine. But over this time I started getting very bad eczema and skin issues, which seemed related. I think I had gained an allergy/intolerance to psyllium.
I took two days off psyllium, and I ended up in the hospital for constipation. I had gotten too dependent on it. This was one of the most painful and embarassing experiences in my life. I won't go into details but let;'s just say their enemas did not work. I saw several GIs, and they all said compeltely different things and recommended completely different diets. Some were very weird, like "no brown bread or brown rice. Only white breads."
I decided to do more research and learned about Leaky Gut. After tons of research about Leaky Gut Syndrome, I started thinking that fiber may not be the answer, and that too much fiber may in fact only be making the constipation worse. After more research I focused on quality fats as described in diets like "The Perfect Health Diet" and "The Bulletproof Diet", and also had tons of cultured vegetables like sauerkraut and kim chi. This all definitely helped me a little.
The big moment was when I realized that everyone in all of this research agreed that bone broth was like the healthiest stuff in the world. Straight broth made from the joints and tendons of animals was suppose to be amazing for the gut (and supposedly skin, nails, joints, etc but I havent noticed all that). Bone broth is almost the same as gelatin (I'm sure healthier than gelatin powder), so I purchased some kosher gelatin powder from amazon.
Before I move on, let me get one thing out of the way. Gelatin is NOT a complete protein as it is missing the amino acid, Triptophane. You cannot live off gelatin (people tried a century again and died). Also, it will not add any kind of muscle mass, although some studies claim that around half of it can be absorbed when ingested with other proteins.
So anyway, it ends up that one or two spoons of this withmy first meal/shake of each day has absolutely helped my constipation. For the first time, I can have as much protein as I want and not have to worry about getting enough fiber as long as I have some gelatin. I believe it has something to do with the amount of the Glycine amino acid in it, but I really don't know. I can't seem to find any other data on this to support what I'm saying.
Anyway, I'm not sitting here telling you to go eat gelatin. I'm just posting this because someone out there will be doing nonstop Google searches trying to figure out how to cure their constipation, and maybe this will help them.
Thread: Gelatin for Constipation