Constipation means different things to different people, however constipation is generally referred to when you have less than 3 bowel movements in a week or when you find it hard or painfull to go to the toilet.
Constipation can be caused by a number of factors such as diet, exercise, stress, medicines and dehydration.
Having a balanced diet including a lot of high fibre foods like vegetables, fruits and grains is important along with regular exercise. However one of the primary factors is dehydration or lack of fluids in the body.
If the body does not get enough water it has to get what it needs from internal sources. The primary source for this is the colon resulting in constipation.
If sufficient water is consumed, normal bowl function returns. Drinking plenty of water and other liquids such as fruit and vegetable juices is critical to avoiding constipation.