Do you take your phone or tablet with you to kill time while making a deposit in the toilet? Don’t be ashamed if your answer is “yes;” you’re not alone! This has become a very common occurrence and may seem the norm, but waste elimination isn’t really meant to take a long time. The defecating difficulties that are taking up your precious time (think: constipation) may be a result of a modernization that has actually slowed us down.
What’s slowing me down?
For the majority of humankind’s existence, we have been squatting to eliminate waste from our bodies, that is, until the invention of indoor plumbing came along and changed our lives for the better (or so we thought). Don’t get me wrong here; pooping in the comfort of your private bathroom on your very own throne is not something we should take for granted! I wouldn’t suggest that we should all begin “squatting” and reading the newspaper in our backyards either, “Hi there, neighbor! Don’t mind me!” But I do think we all might want to take pause and think about following nature’s way and supporting our physiological build.
Can you imagine driving a car that can only make a 20 degree turn, but you need to take a left at the stop sign? If you encountered a sharp twist in the road without having the proper turning capabilities, it could be devastating to the car and also the driver. The same thing happens when we try to evacuate, or move, our bowels while sitting down on a toilet—we run into a literal wall in our rectums.
Physiologically, our body needs to “straighten” the rectum to allow waste to pass without resistance. The human body is one of the most well engineered organisms, and the form always follows the function. If it didn’t do that, we would have problems containing our waste and maintaining our hygiene in public.
But doesn’t diet play a role?
Diet definitely hasn’t helped the problem. Because of population growth, the food industry has adapted for mass production, and we have gone from being more roughage-eating creatures to more dehydrated-, artificial-, less-natural-food eating creatures. This results in more solid, dry and hard waste, which leads to more problems defecating.
If you add the diet issues to the less than ideal physiological postures for eliminating waste, the end result typically is constipation, painful elimination of waste and more visits to the doctor.
Looking at the issue from the dietary perspective alone would probably solve most of our societal (and toilet) issues, but unfortunately, it doesn’t.
Going back to a more physiological defecation process may be the way to go. It is something that is highly complementary to eating the recommended daily amount of fiber, which is 32 grams. But let’s be real: you might need to liken your eating habits to that of a horse or rabbit to consume that much fiber!
So what should I do?
About 2 years ago, I heard about a product on the radio during my morning commute that promised heavenly bathroom experiences (if there can be such a thing). I have to admit that I was very skeptical about it until I did some research. It makes complete sense! This product promised a more natural eliminating process—like returning to ancient times, in the privacy of your own home!
I have begun recommending these products, namely the Squatty Potty or the Step and Go, to some of my patients who have problems with constipation. To my great surprise, it works! Some of them have even referred friends and family to my clinic, claiming that my suggestion to use one of these affordable items has changed their lives for the better!
Recently my mother-in-law gifted one to me for my birthday as a tongue-in-cheek joke, but let’s just say that I am very happy with my gift! Now, I am not recommending for you to buy your special someone a Squatty Potty for your anniversary (although Amazon does offer gift wrapping!), but it might just be the best thing you’ve purchased in a while.