Too much dairy leading to constipation?

Sorry for the gross topic. I consume a lot of dairy, almost 1L of milk a day along with cheese. I notice when I eat a lot dairy products I get constipated and whenever I stop the problem is fixed. The thing is dairy is a very convenient source of protein for me and if I were to stop it would be hard to get the high quality, calcium and vitamin D.

Did any of you experience this? I was never lactose intolerant btw, i've been cosuming dairy products forever but in moderation. I don't know if I should stop or if increasing my fiber intake could solve the problem.

Replies

  • nooshi713
    nooshi713 Posts: 4,842 Member
    Dairy is known to be constipating. This is one reason why some children are very constipated, because they drink so much milk. Not everyone who eats dairy will become constipated obviously, especially if they are eating lot of fiber otherwise.
  • teanahk
    teanahk Posts: 81 Member
    High fat and low fiber can for sure cause constipation. I’d lay off the cheese for a couple of days until things get back to normal and work on increasing your fiber a bit. Then try to be a bit more moderate on the cheese. Maybe work in some beans or nuts for some fiber filled protein.

    Lactose intolerance generally has the opposite effect, so I don’t think that’s your problem.
  • Mellouk89
    Mellouk89 Posts: 469 Member
    teanahk wrote: »
    High fat and low fiber can for sure cause constipation. I’d lay off the cheese for a couple of days until things get back to normal and work on increasing your fiber a bit. Then try to be a bit more moderate on the cheese. Maybe work in some beans or nuts for some fiber filled protein.

    Lactose intolerance generally has the opposite effect, so I don’t think that’s your problem.

    I'm intolerant to both beans and nuts, but I will try to compensate by eating more fiber. I'm already eating close to 30g a day. If it doesn't work I will have no choice but to cut dairy, it sucks because it's a convenient source of protein.
  • Mellouk89
    Mellouk89 Posts: 469 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    I assume you're hydrating adequately? I can't speak to dairy sensitivities of any sort (my Northern European genes seem to favor the stuff), but the manageable counters to constipation generically usually seem to be adequate fiber, adequate hydration, adequate fats (I've never heard of high fat causing constipation, but have heard the reverse), and exercise. For a few people, extra magnesium in the diet seems to help, or probiotic foods.

    ETA: It's not a gross topic, IMO. It's a perfectly normal thing to bring up in a forum like this, even though it might be "gross" as, say, dinner table conversation.

    I do all of those things but it seems I have food sensitivities particularly to dairy and dark chocolate, when I eat too much chocolate the same thing happens.

    I didn't think it was gross but i've rarely seen topic like this, it's good to know.

    I will look into magnesium, I don't know if i'm getting enough of that nutrient.
  • ReenieHJ
    ReenieHJ Posts: 9,722 Member
    I'm actually glad you brought it up. :) Since I've increased my intake of plain nonfat yogurt to a qt. a day, I seem to be having a bit of a problem as well. I don't think it's the yogurt itself as much as not eating as many grains because I look at my daily diary and notice I hardly ever eat whole wheat bread anymore. For me personally, I think I've made my eating habits too limited lately so am definitely missing something.

    OP, hope you figure out your answer soon. It can be uncomfortable. :)
  • nooshi713
    nooshi713 Posts: 4,842 Member
    edited October 2020
    Mellouk89 wrote: »
    teanahk wrote: »
    High fat and low fiber can for sure cause constipation. I’d lay off the cheese for a couple of days until things get back to normal and work on increasing your fiber a bit. Then try to be a bit more moderate on the cheese. Maybe work in some beans or nuts for some fiber filled protein.

    Lactose intolerance generally has the opposite effect, so I don’t think that’s your problem.

    I'm intolerant to both beans and nuts, but I will try to compensate by eating more fiber. I'm already eating close to 30g a day. If it doesn't work I will have no choice but to cut dairy, it sucks because it's a convenient source of protein.

    I feel your pain. I have always eaten lots of fiber and was often constipated when I was younger. I also love dairy products and consumed a lot of them. I stopped eating dairy last year for ethical reasons and noticed my constipation problem went away. I had no problem digesting it previously and was eating between 25-35g of fiber then too. Try cutting back and see how you do.
  • Mellouk89
    Mellouk89 Posts: 469 Member
    edited October 2020
    ReenieHJ wrote: »
    I'm actually glad you brought it up. :) Since I've increased my intake of plain nonfat yogurt to a qt. a day, I seem to be having a bit of a problem as well. I don't think it's the yogurt itself as much as not eating as many grains because I look at my daily diary and notice I hardly ever eat whole wheat bread anymore. For me personally, I think I've made my eating habits too limited lately so am definitely missing something.

    OP, hope you figure out your answer soon. It can be uncomfortable. :)

    Whole wheat bread does wonder for me. I eat a lot of oatmeal these days, and I found that foods that are very high in fiber like berries make the problem worse. Instead I have ripe bananas and dates.
  • VeryKatie
    VeryKatie Posts: 5,867 Member
    edited October 2020
    in terms of lactose intolerance... it goes the opposite way when you have too much. Dairy gives me the urgent runs lol. So doubtful its intolerance. Just over consumption... there might be a way to balance it. Acidic fruit (i give my babies peaches, prunes, apricots, raisins, dates, peas, pears etc to help get their digestion moving and my dad swears by oranges), fibre, fat, more water...
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,853 Member
    I haven’t ever had problems with dairy (nor certainly dark chocolate ) BUT when I took calcium supplements a short time, I felt constipated. Quit supplements, everything went back to normal. Told my doc (don’t remember why or what we had been discussing, maybe bone density) and she nodded that calcium can do that. N=1, fwiw
  • charmmeth
    charmmeth Posts: 936 Member
    Check out the "Poop" thread. That had some helpful suggestions.
  • anyWendy
    anyWendy Posts: 97 Member
    I've noticed the same thing recently, to the point where I've occasionally needed to take medication to help things along. I blame ice cream (and the stress that is causing my increased ice cream consumption).

    Agree with others that the 3 F's are common dietary culprits (not enough fiber, fat, or fluids).
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,853 Member
    I'm back to add another thought. Well two. First is that is a whole lot of milk for one day, much less daily. You have identified yourself that the problem resolves when you moderate it. I hear you re: the difficulty of finding alternate protein, so it's really a matter of picking which problem you prefer to solve-- finding a constipation remedy or finding alternate protein.

    Second thought is calcium and magnesium are the 1st & 4th most prevalent minerals in human bodies. Both impact mood and digestion. Vaguely recall reading somewhere (sorry no source) that the proportion of the two relative to each other is important in addition to net intake. Too much calcium - constipation. Too much magnesium - diarrhea. If you choose to work on a constipation remedy (vs. alternate protein), you can try researching the feasibility of magnesium supplementation to address it.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 25,697 Member
    Mellouk89 wrote: »
    Sorry for the gross topic. I consume a lot of dairy, almost 1L of milk a day along with cheese. I notice when I eat a lot dairy products I get constipated and whenever I stop the problem is fixed. The thing is dairy is a very convenient source of protein for me and if I were to stop it would be hard to get the high quality, calcium and vitamin D.

    Did any of you experience this? I was never lactose intolerant btw, i've been cosuming dairy products forever but in moderation. I don't know if I should stop or if increasing my fiber intake could solve the problem.

    There are many other sources of protein, calcium, and vitamin D.
  • Mellouk89
    Mellouk89 Posts: 469 Member
    ahoy_m8 wrote: »
    I'm back to add another thought. Well two. First is that is a whole lot of milk for one day, much less daily. You have identified yourself that the problem resolves when you moderate it. I hear you re: the difficulty of finding alternate protein, so it's really a matter of picking which problem you prefer to solve-- finding a constipation remedy or finding alternate protein.

    Second thought is calcium and magnesium are the 1st & 4th most prevalent minerals in human bodies. Both impact mood and digestion. Vaguely recall reading somewhere (sorry no source) that the proportion of the two relative to each other is important in addition to net intake. Too much calcium - constipation. Too much magnesium - diarrhea. If you choose to work on a constipation remedy (vs. alternate protein), you can try researching the feasibility of magnesium supplementation to address it.

    I'm on a rush in the morning so I have a milkshake of 500ml of 2% milk with ripe bananas and maple syrup. I also eat oatmeal later on that I cook with milk.

    And yes I hear you on that one, just one cup of milk has 30% of the recommended intake of calcium. I drink almost one liter so it's a lot. I researched magnesium yesterday, this mineral is not abundant in the foods that I eat regularly. I also considered supplementing with magnesium because of sleep problems.

    I think the problem may be excessive calcium intake, but then there are people who drink just as much milk as me who don't have that problem.
  • Awesomizer06
    Awesomizer06 Posts: 5 Member
    How's the rest of your diet? Do you eat fiber rich diet? Do you drink adequate amount of water? Do you exercise?
    Too much dairy can cause constipation to some people but diarrhea to some others.
  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,465 Member
    You could try the two solutions you’ve thought of. First decrease your dairy for 2 wks. If that doesn’t help, try increasing your fiber for 2 wks.