Next time your buddies say “You don’t know shit!” try coming back with “actually, I do.”
All guys download brownware, but not all of us learn from what we leave behind in the john. What’s there to learn? Well, a quick look at the shape, size and colour of your stools, as well as following the frequency of deposits at the porcelain bank, can help you gauge your digestive health and even tell you when it’s time to see your doctor.
Bowel movements, after all, are what happens when your body takes the nutrients it needs from food and shows the leftovers the back door. And when these leftovers vary from the norm, it could be time to take action.
What should you look out for? Here are the “Big 3” issues:
First of all, why are turds brown? Turns out they’re coloured by bile, a digestive liquid secreted by the liver. Food that takes the usual three days to get from mouth to toilet is typically brown, and if it’s extra speedy — owing to factors such as lots of fibre in your diet — it could come out looking greenish. Leprechaun poop is nothing to worry about.
Now, if your logs look extra light or dark, it could be a sign of trouble and you should visit your doctor if it continues.
Shape and size
Both these factors can indicate a lack of fibre in your diet. Small, hard, pellet-like poops are typical of this. This is a great time to be a good example to your family and munch on extra fruits, veggies, and/or beans.
There’s no “normal” rate of launching a butt shuttle. Some men launch several times a day, others just a few times a week. It’s when your launch routine changes drastically, or causes discomfort, that you need to take action.
- Consider constipation: If you normally go once or twice a day, but are feeling bloated and uncomfortable after three days without relief, it could indicate several things: Your fibre intake has decreased; you’re not drinking enough water; you’ve become less physically active; or you’re taking painkillers or iron supplements. Address these causes, and you’ll probably get relief in a day or two.
- The same goes for diarrhea: Loose, overly frequent core dumps may be caused by something you ate or a bacterial or viral infection. If these are the causes, symptoms should go away within 48 hours. Remember to drink extra water, as persistent diarrhea can lead to dehydration.
In any case, symptoms lasting more than a few days should be brought to your doctor’s attention, as they could be signs of the widespread irritable bowel syndrome or other more serious conditions.
So there you go: There’s plenty to gain from being No. 1 in the No. 2 business.