Pop quiz! What do these four things have in common?

  1. The largest elephant ever recorded
  2. A Caterpillar 311cu Digger
  3. Two adult killer whales
  4. The poop produced by the average guy over his lifetime

If you said, “they all weigh the same,” you nailed it! That’s right: research shows that the average guy deposits a grand total of around 11 tons in the porcelain bank.
Now that you’re up to speed on poop quantity let’s move on to the quality of curling pipe.

Super-smelly and loud poops

Your log cabins may look great, but what if they disturb your household with their stinkiness and noisy construction? A lot of this comes down to your diet. You can help stop super smelly poops with these easy tips to quell the smell and stifle the rifle:

Eat less

Feeling bloated after eating and then experiencing constipation or diarrhea is a sign that you’re putting away more food than your body can comfortably handle. Try cutting back a bit by serving yourself smaller portions and not having seconds. Or eat smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day, and nix meals at least 2 hours before bedtime.

Cut back on ultra-processed foods and unhealthy fats

Ultra-processed foods like soft drinks, potato chips, candy, sweetened breakfast cereals, and packaged meats contain synthetic ingredients that your body may struggle to digest. The same goes for the trans fats found in fried foods, bakery items and many salty and sugary snacks. As well as saturated fat common in fatty meats, bacon, deli meats, full-fat dairy products, palm oil and butter.

See ya, sulphur

Too much sulphur in your diet can make your stool stinkier and your bowel movements noisier than normal. Sulphur-rich foods include:

  • Coconut milk, juice, and oil
  • Certain vegetables, including broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, horseradish, kale, radish, and turnips.
  • Dairy products (except butter)
  • Eggs
  • Garlic
  • Baked beans (the more you eat, the most you fart, right?)

On that note…

What to do about bad gas

Less stinky farts

Fun fart fact, most people break wind 10 to 20 times a day. This is usually caused by partially undigested food and is perfectly healthy. That said, letting a nasty one loose at the dinner table isn’t something to cheer about. Here are some easy tips for reducing the chances of clearing the room with your stinky farts:

Cut down on sugar alcohols

Often found in foods like protein bars and candy, sugar alcohol remains partially undigested and routinely creates extra gas.

Cut down on certain foods 

Broccoli, cabbage, lentils, beans, dairy, and onions tend to produce gas. There’s no need to eliminate these foods, but a simple reduction in portions may help.

In some cases, excess gas is associated with a digestive disorder. If your gas is giving you severe pain and bloating, be sure to pay your doctor a visit.

Swallow less air

Try cutting back on drinking from a straw, chewing gum, eating too quickly, or having carbonated beverages.

Staying regular: be No. 1 in the No. 2 department

Favour fibre

The fibre found in fruits and veggies, nuts, and whole-grain foods, helps to bulk up and soften poop, making it easier to park bark. According to Health Canada, guys need 38 grams of fibre each day to stay healthy, with these food swaps being easy ways to achieve this goal:

  • OUT: Regular pasta & white rice
  • IN: Whole grain pasta and brown rice
  • OUT: White bread & doughnuts
  • IN: Whole-grain bread and muffins
  • OUT: Sugary breakfast cereals
  • IN: Bran cereals & oatmeal
  • OUT: Fatty french fries as a side dish
  • IN: Crunchy salad as a side dish
  • OUT: Potato chips as a snack
  • IN: Mixed nuts, ripe fruit, veggie sticks or trail mix 

Drink more fluids

As well as keeping your poops regular and your turds properly lubricated, drinking plenty of water and other fluids helps control your body temperature, carries nutrients throughout your body, and even cushions your organs and joints. No wonder Dietitians of Canada recommend that men should aim to drink about 3 litres of fluids, or 6 large glasses, every day.

Slow down, lighten up

How and when you eat can be as important as what you eat. Chowing down too quickly, going for big, heavy meals, and eating late at night make your digestive system work harder and less efficiently than usual. The result: angry barbarians at the gate!

Gut-check time

Should diet and lifestyle changes fail to produce the brown snakes you’re hunting, you can always turn to a medical professional for a digestive assessment. After all, irregular, inconsistent, or extra-stinky bowel movements could be symptoms of underlying health conditions such as food intolerance, a lack of digestive enzymes, or an imbalance in the gut microbes that aid in poop production.

Defining the perfect poop

According to the Bristol stool chart—yes, it’s a thing—there are seven types of turd. Types 1 and 2 are nugget-like and happen when you’re constipated. Types 5 to 7 are watery and occur with diarrhea, and Types 3 and 4 are sausage-shaped, brown in colour, and hold their forms when flushed. These last two are considered normal, but Type 4 has the edge because it’s smoother than Type 3, slips out more easily, and contains the ideal balance of moisture and nutrients.

What’s a healthy amount of poops per day? While there’s no magic number, having 1 or 2 Type 4s signals that everything is working as it should. Most people have a regular poop pattern and typically chop a log at around the same time each day and the same number of times.

Deviating from your regular loaf-pinching schedule isn’t cause for alarm, but if you suddenly stop dropping dookies or spend the entire day releasing payloads, it’s time to see your doctor.

Speaking of poop production, it’s time for another pop (or should we say poop?) quiz!

What do these other four things have in common?

  1. The USS Little Rock combat ship
  2. 30 blue whales
  3. NASA’s Saturn V rocket
  4. The poop produced by the average African elephant over its lifetime

If you said “they all weigh the same” again—that’s 3,000 tons BTW—you’re two for two!

Got any tips for having better poops? Share them with your DCM buds in the comments below!

In 10 minutes, learn your risk level for the 8 most common health conditions affecting Canadian men. Men’s Health Check is free, anonymous and backed by medical experts.