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Does Apple Juice Relieve Constipation?

by
author image Meg Campbell
Based just outside Chicago, Meg Campbell has worked in the fitness industry since 1997. She’s been writing health-related articles since 2010, focusing primarily on diet and nutrition. Campbell divides her time between her hometown and Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Does Apple Juice Relieve Constipation?
A glass of fresh apple juice. Photo Credit HandmadePictures/iStock/Getty Images

Even if you don't have chronic constipation, you’ve probably experienced random bouts of bowel irregularity. The food you eat, the medications you take and the amount of time you spend moving your body can all affect digestion, as can anxiety and illness. Drinking apple juice may provide some relief.

Laxative Effects

While apple juice is often used to treat temporary bouts of constipation in babies and children, it can also help relieve mild cases in adults -- the beverage is a natural source of sorbitol, an indigestible sugar alcohol that has a laxative effect when consumed in significant quantities.

Considerations

Apple juice isn’t effective against constipation simply because it contains sorbitol. As a liquid, it facilitates the movement of material through your intestinal tract and helps generate soft, bulky stools easier to pass. This helps explain why people who drink plenty of fluids are less likely to become constipated to begin with.

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An 8-ounce glass of apple juice contains just over 1 gram of sorbitol, according to the Baylor College of Medicine. Peach juice provides almost twice that amount, while pear juice supplies four times as much. Ounce for ounce, prune juice is about 25 times higher in sorbitol than apple juice.

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