How often should you poo each day?

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Everyone poos. And although there are many experts who have their take on how often you should poo, the fact is that the frequency may vary according to the individual.

But there is a point where your lack of bowel movement should be a cause for concern.

First, let’s get down to basics.

Human faeces are a mixture of 75 per cent water, food, bacteria, protein, indigestible fibre and waste from your liver and intestines.

The average person poos once a day, but anywhere from three times a week to three times a day can be considered normal, depending on the consistency of the waste matter. In short, your poo should neither be too hard nor too soft.

A survey of 2000 poopers, conducted by Healthline, revealed the following bowel movement patterns:

  • around 50 per cent poo once a day
  • 28 per cent go twice a day
  • 5.6 per cent go once or twice weekly
  • 61.3 per cent poo in the morning
  • 22 per cent reported go in the afternoon
  • 2.6 percent poo late at night
  • around 31 per cent reported consistency similar to that of a sausage or snake, and of a smooth and soft consistency. 

How often you poo depends on your diet; that is, how much you eat and what you eat.

Western digestive systems, which are typically low in fibre, will evacuate less than Eastern digestive systems, which are typically high in fibre.

Your bowel movements remove waste build-up from your system, cleaning your colon and eliminating toxic build-up. So, it goes without saying that this process is important.

The food you eat – a healthy diet – is the most effective way to remove these toxins from your body, and regular bowel movements are essential to this process. If you feel you don’t poo enough, there’s always the option of taking laxatives or having a colon cleanse, although these alternatives, used long term, can disrupt your natural digestive processes.

As you age, you may be more likely to become constipated. This is due to reduced gastric movement and reduced mobility, both of which encourage digestion. Sometimes medications can cause constipation, too. For more regular bowel movements, eat more fibre, drink more water and try to increase your physical activity.

When should you worry about your bowel movements?
The only time you need to worry about your bowel movements is when they suddenly change and the change lasts for longer than a week. If you poo three times a day then suddenly you don’t poo for three days, it could be something as minor as a change in diet, constipation, or it could be a sign of something more serious, such as irritable bowel syndrome or worse, colon cancer. If you happen to see blood in your stool, or suffer severe abdominal pain, you should quickly get to a GP to have it checked out.

At the very least, you may need to revisit your diet or lifestyle choices.

How often do you poo? Have you ever worried about your digestion (or lack thereof)?

Health disclaimer: This article contains general information about health issues and is not advice. For health advice, consult your medical practitioner.

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?



Total Comments: 9
  1. 0

    I’m often baffled about English words which have completely different meanings. and wonder why a word was chosen for something which already means something else. So why “stool” for excrement when the object looks nothing like a piece of furniture? That contrasts with the naming of a fish brought back from the New World and discussed by boffins at the Royal Institution. “What shall we call it” said one boffin, pointing to the fish on the slab. “Well” said another. “it looks like the stick that birds sit on, so let’s call it a perch”

  2. 0

    “The commode or chamberpot was called a stool in the 1500s and earlier. Before running water, the commode was a box with a hole in it. The waste has to be removed from the room by a person.”
    Hence the expression, “going to stool.” Of course the poor bloody person removing the “stools” could be a lowly paid servant…
    I know, it’s bonkers!

  3. 0

    If I think I’m having a problem to POO…all I do is listen to Ray Hadley for 2mins…it fixes it quick smart.

  4. 0

    I spent some time in hospital in the ’50’s and the nurses enquired each morning about bowel habits. If no positive answer in 2 days a dose of something was administered. Another extended hospitalisation in the ’90’s had a totally different outcome; the same question was asked and the answer recorded but no action was taken if there was a negative response. Hospitals realise that each of us is different and unless there is discomfort, no remedy is given.

  5. 0

    Dr told me don’t eat 2 much celery although good for U can cause blo9ckage which he witnessed necessitating colonoscopy . i expect if we chop it finely it would help .it does have a fair amount of fibre i like a little in a salad 2 give it some crunch , mushrooms onions curries salads vegies all great 4 constipation also helps probiotics too & fermented vegies such as saurkrat .



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