I love poop. Everything about it. If this topic makes you uncomfortable then you may want to skip over this one.
Whether you are dropping the kids off at the pool, in a meeting, pinching one out, or praying to the porcelain Gods, the renowned Japanese author Taro Gomi said it best: everyone poops. A quality BM is normal and necessary.
My guess is that most people enjoy the light feeling they have after their daily debris has exited their body (typically following their morning ritual cup of coffee or any other mojo-sourcing beverage). It’s also probably one of the top places where people do their best thinking and reading. Efficient excretions…what’s not to like?
Brain fog, lethargy, acne, IBS, sleep apnea and depression, among many other ailments, can usually be solved by taking a doody. Your colon is your body’s largest immune system organ. The dirtier and more clogged your poop chute is, the worse you’re going to feel.
As Bethany Frankel put it, your body is like a bank account. In order to have healthy financials, you have to make sure you are putting in as much as you are taking out. The human body works in reverse; i.e. you should excrete as often as you eat a full meal. So, if you indulged in Sunday fun-day, make sure you take that Monday morning meeting to balance the budget. Once a day is a must; twice or more is optimal.
There are a few factors that play a role in having proper poops such as diet, exercise, hydration, and your overall health. If you don’t currently have any chronic preexisting ailments, then the following are a few tips to keep the movement alive:
- HYDRATE. Coffee, soda, and fruit juice do not count! Water, water, and more water. How much? I like to follow the 8×8 rule: eight 8-ounce glasses a day. If you are very active and sweat often then you may need a little more along with some added electrolytes. If plain water bores you, then opt for sparkling mineral water to titillate your taste buds. Sparkling mineral water contains sodium as well, which gives you the bonus of naturally occurring electrolytes!
- EAT WHOLE HEALTHFUL FOODS, HEAVY ON THE VEGGIES. Do acesulfame potassium, anhydrous milk fat, and hydrolyzed gelatin sound appetizing to you? Didn’t think so. Processed foods are no longer on trend and green is the new black, so choose leafy (preferably organic) greens. If you can’t pronounce it and you are unable to count the ingredients on one hand, don’t consume it. Most or all of the soluble/fermentable fiber is removed from processed food in order to extend its shelf life. Sugar is also hidden in most processed food; it destroys your colon and skyrockets your cancer risk. Keep grains to a minimum and if you are too cool to jump on the Gluten Free band wagon, then do your best to limit it. Gluten is an inflammatory, which irritates the digestive system and causes bad bacteria to thrive.
- TAKE PROBIOTICS. Probiotic bacteria reduce the harmful bacteria in your body helping to prevent infections in the digestive tract and reduce inflammation. Probiotics not only help with digestion, but they are also known to help with skin breakouts, vaginal and urinary tract health, and even help to prevent you from getting sick! For maximum colon health, choose a probiotic that contains Bifidus. Bifidus is one of the major bacteria that inhabit your colon and helps to ease and sometimes even cure symptoms of IBS.
- CHEW. Such a simple concept, yet some people (including myself) struggle to excel in this department. Chewing breaks down your food before you swallow, majorly helping the prevention of gas and bloating, diarrhea, constipation, abdominal pain, cramping and other digestive problems. Your saliva contains important digestive enzymes that begin the process of breaking down your food. As my mom always told me ,“Your food doesn’t have legs. It’s not going to get up and walk off your plate or jump off your fork, so what’s the hurry?” It takes roughly 20 minutes for your brain to signal to your stomach that you’re full, so you may even drop a few pounds if you don’t inhale your meals. Try to practice conscious chewing.
- EXERCISE. This increases blood flow and circulation, which in turn directs more oxygen to your colon. It also increases peristalsis, which is the contraction of your intestinal muscles to move food through your canal. Sedentary body = sedentary colon. Need I say more?
If you follow these guidelines and are still having trouble dropping deuces on the reg, below are some of my favorite supplements to help you kick-start the caca!
Note: This is not a prescription or diagnosis. Everything I write is solely my personal opinion and comes from my experience as a Health and Wellness Practitioner. Please feel free to contact me directly if you have a chronic problem, specific concern, or question.