Fact: Exercise is good for the heart and the waistline. But did you know that it also relieves constipation? A new report conducted at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom suggests that regular exercise can relieve constipation and feelings of bloating that are associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Symptoms of IBS, which affects about 30 percent of the population, include chronic abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea and constipation.

In a 12-week study of 56 adults (mostly women), researchers found that people who worked out five days a week for 30 minutes had a significantly greater decline in constipation. Amanda J. Daley, MD, the study’s head researcher, says that this news is very encouraging since most folks with IBS would not work out when showing symptoms.

Learn more about IBS here.