The Goldilocks zone for pooping
September 11, 2018 2:04 PM   Subscribe

We asked five experts if we have to poop every day. Five out of five experts said no. (Alexandra Hansen, Quartz)

Dan Worthley, Gastroenterologist:
But just as important as frequency, is form. To describe our stool consistency, we use the Bristol Stool Form Scale which uses a seven-point scale ranging from Type 1 “separate hard lumps, like nuts” to Type 7 “watery no solid pieces.” Type 4 (“Like a sausage or snake, smooth and soft”) is the Nirvana of all bowel actions, but 50% of normal patients report some variation from this.
posted by Johnny Wallflower (189 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite
 
Per comments I've made on this site earlier, I assume all undimensioned numbers are measurements on the Bristol scale.
posted by GuyZero at 2:10 PM on September 11 [40 favorites]


50% of normal patients report some variation from this: Older Beanplating sandwiches...
posted by y2karl at 2:11 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


these experts are full of shit

triumphant, he exits the thread
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:17 PM on September 11 [117 favorites]


95% of people move their bowels between three and 21 times weekly.

What the what? 21 times a week. I do not want to know what they are eating. Or why.
posted by Splunge at 2:22 PM on September 11 [13 favorites]


I want to know if there's any evidence for my theory that sitting down to pee = more frequent pooping. I suspect that Standing Pissers are more likely to wait to poop until they Really Really Need To Poop, whereas Sitting Pissers can just decide to take a casual poop on a whim while they're down there.
posted by showbiz_liz at 2:25 PM on September 11 [94 favorites]


none of these experts are as expert on my own butt as i am so therefore their opinions are not valuable to me. give me once a day or give me death.
posted by poffin boffin at 2:26 PM on September 11 [9 favorites]


Hey Splunge, MeFi is supposed to be a safe space from poop-shaming.
posted by anarch at 2:26 PM on September 11 [19 favorites]


What the what? 21 times a week. I do not want to know what they are eating. Or why.

I've never bothered to count but I'm probably close to that, certainly closer than the baffling-to-me three times a week. Going an entire day or two without pooping at all? Do you people not drink coffee?
posted by showbiz_liz at 2:27 PM on September 11 [42 favorites]


Going an entire day or two without pooping at all? Do you people not drink coffee?

It requires enormous effort to get down from the tree, find a spot, dig a hole, do the business, cover the hole, climb back up into the tree, etc. Not worth doing more than once a week. [/sloth]
posted by The Bellman at 2:29 PM on September 11 [63 favorites]


I don't drink coffee and I am confused by the idea of just... not pooping in a whole day.

I. how.
posted by sciatrix at 2:30 PM on September 11 [11 favorites]


not pooping in a whole day

I. how


Have you seen the cheese threads in this place?
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 2:32 PM on September 11 [63 favorites]


this may be tmi, but when I recently had neck surgery I wish they'd told me about …
Click here, if you must find out. ▼… how much more difficult it was going to be to poop until it all healed. Sure, there was Percocet for the first week, but you could balance that with docusate sodium. So much depends on being able to maintain diaphragm pressure, but if your throat/neck is tender you can't manage that, so you just can't go.

posted by scruss at 2:33 PM on September 11 [13 favorites]


What's weird is when I skip a day (because I'm camping and don't feel like digging a hole) and then the next day I poop not twice as much, but like six times as much. What happened? Where did it all come from?
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 2:37 PM on September 11 [29 favorites]


Metafilter: taking a casual poop on a whim
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 2:37 PM on September 11 [25 favorites]


I’ve been trying, with a gastroenterologist’s help, to get down to what I feel would be a totally reasonable two times a day for over five years. I average four, still.

Splunge: IT DOESN’T MATTER
posted by Caduceus at 2:39 PM on September 11 [8 favorites]


I can definitely go a day without pooping if need be, but I am not happy the next day. A good, normal day involves two poops.
posted by grumpybear69 at 2:46 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


What happened? Where did it all come from?

RIGHT? WHAT IS HAPPENING IS IT MATING OH MY GOD
posted by poffin boffin at 2:47 PM on September 11 [31 favorites]


never before had i felt so represented in this world than on the day that possum first decided to scream at own ass
posted by poffin boffin at 2:48 PM on September 11 [53 favorites]


If I eat more vegetables than like, a garnish, I might hit 4+. A whole vegan meal? Hourly events, for the next week. 2 a day if I stick to a trash diet of meat and carbs.
posted by rodlymight at 2:50 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


I want to know if there's any evidence for my theory that sitting down to pee = more frequent pooping.

I'm going to anecdotally confirm this thesis. My age plus a radical prostatectomy means sitting down to pee is less…annoying, and sometimes I'm surprised by poop when I hadn't felt a prior urge.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:52 PM on September 11 [8 favorites]


WHY IS METAFILTER OBSESSED WITH POO
posted by holborne at 2:53 PM on September 11 [14 favorites]


surprised by poop

The less well-known, but much funnier sequel.
posted by The Bellman at 2:54 PM on September 11 [16 favorites]


By C.S. Loose
posted by chavenet at 2:57 PM on September 11 [30 favorites]


WHY IS METAFILTER OBSESSED WITH POO

"Obsessed" is so judgmental. I prefer "fascinated."
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:58 PM on September 11 [36 favorites]


I mean, I might poop 15 times a night, but it's actually one bowel movement that should have egressed all at once but didn't because my intestines are bad.
posted by batter_my_heart at 3:04 PM on September 11 [10 favorites]


I've never bothered to count but I'm probably close to that, certainly closer than the baffling-to-me three times a week. Going an entire day or two without pooping at all? Do you people not drink coffee?

I'm around 5 times a week. Two entire days without is relatively rare, but does happen. I just don't feel the need to go. And Imma not gonna force it. Yes, about half a liter of coffee a day and twice that of tea. And type 3, since we're waaay oversharing today.

I should probably eat more fibre, but my diet includes plants at almost all meals. 3-4 times a day? That's definitely 'Oh god, oh god, I want to die so this will _end_' levels of gastroenteritis for me. I mean, I can easily do days where I *piss* less often than that. Do you guys spend like half your life in the bathroom?

TIL: there's a much bigger range of normal than I realised. Also, I suddenly feel the need to buy this coffee mug for work.
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 3:05 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


I had a regular schedule of twice a day for literally decades; I'm convinced that the prep I had to go through for a colonoscopy - a day of fasting plus 3 (!!) different types of laxatives along with a ton of Gatorade, per the doctor's detailed instructions - was what completely messed that up. I felt about 2/3 of the way through that day-before regimen that I was already clean as a whistle and should have said "enough", and later regretted that I didn't because I actually started feeling a bit ill that evening and felt more so straight through until after the actual (quite drama free, ironically) procedure the next day. It took 2-3 months before eating even just a little food at a time stopped giving me a stomach ache, all I could do to avoid discomfort was nibble multiple times a day. Meanwhile pooping every 2-3 days seemed the new norm and I was NOT happy about it. I tried taking probiotics to get my microbiome back on track but it didn't seem to help, and research I've seen since then corroborates that they don't do a whole lot.

That was a year and a half ago; only in the past few months has my pooping schedule begun to settle down to a steadier and more "normal" (for me) schedule. But it's still not the same as before. They sure as hell don't warn you about that in the preparatory literature!
posted by Greg_Ace at 3:07 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


Do you people not drink coffee?

some people have GERD, other liz! also coffee is the foul urine of satan
posted by poffin boffin at 3:09 PM on September 11 [9 favorites]


Do you guys spend like half your life in the bathroom?

IT SURE FUCKING FEELS LIKE IT SOMETIMES

Source: Both my comments in this thread made on phone while on toilet.
posted by Caduceus at 3:10 PM on September 11 [33 favorites]


WHY IS METAFILTER OBSESSED WITH POO

metafilter is largely comprised of humans
humans are largely obsessed with poo (theirs, that of others, the concept in general)
posted by halation at 3:11 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


I keep wondering why people spell it "shiting" then I remember I have to fix my Word Replacer settings
posted by thelonius at 3:13 PM on September 11


metafilter is largely comprised of humans


And those who are secretly dogs are probably just as obsessed. At least humans don't eat poo they find in the street.
posted by stillnocturnal at 3:13 PM on September 11 [10 favorites]


metafilter is largely comprised of humans
humans are largely obsessed with poo


It would be rude to poo-poo such concerns!
posted by Greg_Ace at 3:14 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


Relevant.
posted by grumpybear69 at 3:14 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach? When you fill up the chute something's got to exit to make room. Just sayin....seems logical and that's how it generally works for me. I've started eating one meal a day so it's interesting to see how the exit plan has changed in terms of frequency as a result.
posted by diode at 3:18 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


Do you guys spend like half your life in the bathroom?

A bathroom is an anti-anxiety fortress. In times of stress I'll excrete as often as I need to if that's the price of having a locked door between me and the world.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 3:19 PM on September 11 [55 favorites]


I apologize if I have annoyed or angered frequent goers. I was just surprised. Really surprised.
posted by Splunge at 3:19 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


We didn't intend to startle the crap out of you, Splunge.
posted by Greg_Ace at 3:22 PM on September 11 [30 favorites]


those who are secretly dogs are probably just as obsessed

I already said I prefer "fascinated."
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 3:23 PM on September 11 [9 favorites]


omg if I don't poop every day I am miserable, and 2x or even the occasional 3x is normal for me. I do eat a lot of fiber...
posted by supermedusa at 3:24 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


One evacuates one's English bowels at 4:45pm every day, shortly after taking afternoon tea. One deduced previously that what is consumed - cucumber sandwiches, a nice slice of cake, and of course a refreshing pot of tea - in addition to the actions involved in preparation and consumption, act as biological and psychological triggers, informing one's colon that it is time to wave goodbye to Mr Brown and push him out of one's door.
posted by Wordshore at 3:36 PM on September 11 [25 favorites]


I think some of the mutual bafflement here might be because less frequent pooping = each poop is more difficult/time-consuming to pass. The longer it spends hanging out in your colon, the more water gets drawn out of it, making it harder and thus more of a chore to excrete. Multiple-times-per-day poopers aren't generally spending 5-10 minutes on each poop, like I've heard some less-frequent poopers describe.

...poop
posted by showbiz_liz at 3:37 PM on September 11 [15 favorites]


Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach? When you fill up the chute something's got to exit to make room. Just sayin....seems logical and that's how it generally works for me.

Not for me. I'm so British even my shit queues for the exit. Which, incidentally, means modern European low-flow toilets are a real clogging hazard, which I could live without.
posted by Absolutely No You-Know-What at 3:37 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


Given that Goldilocks learned everything from the Bears, isn’t the “Goldilocks Zone” for pooping “in the woods?”
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:39 PM on September 11 [16 favorites]


Greg_Ace, I also had a colonoscopy early into my attempts to treat whatever my issue is, and I also think it made things worse long term. He also found fucking nothing.

And in case you’re wondering, it takes about half an extra dose of anything to push me to the other side of not pooping for two to three days and then when I do again it’s even more nightmarish.

I would give up all almost anything in a hot second if in exchange I could poop once a day and didn’t need to take Balneol everywhere.
posted by Caduceus at 3:39 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach? When you fill up the chute something's got to exit to make room.

With women, the ebb and flow of the different hormones over the course of the monthly menstrual cycle can affect one's bowel function; at some points, digestion slows way down, and at some point it speeds way up. Women in perimenopause experience even more unpredictability to go along with their own irregular hormones.

Or if you prefer a less clinical way of saying it - PMS can do really, really, really weird things to impact both when, how, and how often you shit.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:39 PM on September 11 [49 favorites]


> sciatrix:
"I don't drink coffee and I am confused by the idea of just... not pooping in a whole day.

I. how."


I don't eat as much as you would think from looking at me. And it's not as hard as you would think. I just don't feel like I need to poop, soooooo...
posted by Samizdata at 3:41 PM on September 11


I went to Boy Scout camp when I was 13. The bathrooms were something extra special. 7 days, with one poop on day 5. The next year, again one poop, this time on day 4.

My whole life, I've been a once- or twice-a-day pooper. But it's nice to know I can go for longer in a... pinch.

Or I could when I was 14. These days, I'm neither as bothered by awful bathrooms nor, probably, as up to the endurance challenge.
posted by gurple at 3:51 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


My entertaining gastric system. Sometimes I don't go for several days, sometimes it's multiple times a day. Is there a schedule? Not that I can determine. the best I can come up with is when I was a young angry little shit (heh) I said I was an anarchist, and now my intestines are holding me to that. Goddamnit.
Intestinal fortitude, like real men!
sorry
posted by evilDoug at 3:53 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


As someone with lactose intolerance who can find myself emptying my bowels precipitously multiple times in one day if I am not careful about watching out for dairy, I am not the least bit unhappy not to poop every day even under normal conditions. As long as it doesn't stretch out more than every other day, I am content.
posted by briank at 3:55 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


I mean, I might poop 15 times a night, but it's actually one bowel movement that should have egressed all at once but didn't

I don't go this many times, but sometimes I do go two to three times in one morning, and I also don't really count it as separate poop incidents because I consider it all part of the same bowel movement. There's one before I have anything to eat/drink, and one right after, presumably because the consumption of liquids or food gets things going, and each time only takes a couple minutes or so.

I always get extremely suspicious of what my body's up to if I don't have my morning poop. If I haven't pooped for 2-3 days, then it's time to grimly chug laxative while making sure to be within ten feet of a bathroom at all times.
posted by yasaman at 3:57 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


For whatever this knowledge is worth:
In my pre-heart attack days, when my meals were light on fiber and vegetables, heavy on dead cow and dead pig and cheese and other bad-cholesterol pseudo-foods, washed down with tanker-loads of sodas, two sessions of solid excretions per week were the norm.
After changing my diet to more grains, no red meats, much less cheese, much less soda, I'd say I'm probably closer to five sessions per week, on average. The Bristol quality varies more widely, too.
posted by Mutant Lobsters from Riverhead at 3:57 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Really somethin when they join in poopin
When they do the Bristol Squat
posted by delfin at 4:00 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


Women in perimenopause experience even more unpredictability to go along with their own irregular hormones.

wait it's bad enough i poop about 100000x the two days before my period now i've got projectile shitting to look forward to in perimenopause?!?!

😨
posted by lineofsight at 4:05 PM on September 11 [10 favorites]


> batter_my_heart:
"I mean, I might poop 15 times a night, but it's actually one bowel movement that should have egressed all at once but didn't because my intestines are bad."

Or, you know, MAYBE you're a bit of a tight ass?

(Sorry, sorry, my fingers went autonomous for a minute.)
posted by Samizdata at 4:07 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


I mean, once every other day or so, is pretty typical for me. Though sometimes I actually forget the last time I went. And sometimes I start thinking to myself. "Should I be worried that I can't remember that last time I shat?"

It seems to take care of itself.

I'm more curious about how urgent the need to go is for various people.

For me, when I need to go, I need to go (though oddly my bowels somehow know that I'm in a place where going is a bad idea and wait until I get to a better place to start making demands).
posted by oddman at 4:14 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


Since we're all oversharing, that is.
posted by oddman at 4:14 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


I have 1-2/day, most days. Sometimes I'll go a day or at worst two without. Coffee does tend to sort this out, especially if it's poorly filtered, because the grounds are a terrible irritant to my system.

What's odd though is that I'm subject to a secondary cycle that's probably a week or two in length, in which my system periodically decides it really needs to clean it all out, and I poop approximately 10x what I normally do, and it's rather horrid. My conclusion is that, as far as poop goes, I'm always falling behind.
posted by allium cepa at 4:16 PM on September 11


> oddman:
"Since we're all oversharing, that is."

Speaking of which, I just had to go, as I was mentally bowel-focussed, thanks to you guys, too much.
posted by Samizdata at 4:17 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Regarding the bathroom stall as an anxiety fortress, of course!

Where else am I supposed to go when I need to lose my shit in private?
posted by allium cepa at 4:19 PM on September 11 [13 favorites]


as far as poop goes, I'm always falling behind.

That's a bad time to lose one's balance.
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:20 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


My partner envies my poop discipline. I get up in the morning, repose on the throne, check email etc, and poop. Then I shower. Because who doesn't wash their ass after pooping? No, don't tell me, I don't want to know how many of you walk around with dirty asses. Then I get dressed and get on with my day, care and poop free.

Except SOME DAYS, in the afternoon, the QE2 sets sail out my butt.
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:25 PM on September 11 [16 favorites]


I heard a radio interview with one of the doctors involved with developing the Bristol Stool Scale a few years ago. He was very enthusiastic about his work. On his desk he had a plaster cast of what he described as "the perfect turd", which he had found outside a small town in India. I've often wondered whether he brought it back home to Bristol with him (how?) and took the cast there, or whether he had plaster-casting kit with him while travelling through India. Well, not often wondered, but you know what I mean.

He also described the perfect motion as "twice round the bowl and pointed at both ends", which seems a bit excessive, although he didn't say how often you were supposed to produce one.
posted by Fuchsoid at 4:33 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


I don't drink coffee and I am confused by the idea of just... not pooping in a whole day.

I. how.


Well, I'll raise my hand here and say that I usually don't go every day. Which is fairly normal for me, except as mentioned above, in certain parts of my cycle. I've always been that way and on occasions when I may need to. . . wait, for some weird reason, I have no problem doing so with no ill effects. And I can get down to 3x a week on occasion. . . said occasions when I'm experiencing a high amount of anxiety. I guess when I'm anxious EVERY part of me tries its best not to be seen. But I've wondered for years now if my baseline anxiety levels affect what I consider "normal". I certainly had no trouble believing that neurotransmitters are produced in the gut and the gut-brain connection when I first read about it!

Also because of my ADHD I try to limit carbs/sugar, and I've always noticed that when I do eat a lot more carbs or eat a lot of fruit/berries over the course of a few days that the frequency doesn't really change. . . . well, I like to think of it this way: my scat goes from looking like a carnivore's to looking more like a herbivore's. It kind of changes like a bear's can over the seasons (the omnivore besides humans I'm most familiar with so natch) and when I notice said changes it makes me feel like a bear and kind of delights me.
posted by barchan at 4:33 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


I drink morning coffee and smoke nicotine cigarettes - I'm regular as shit 30 minutes after I get out of bed.

In the past when I've quit cigarettes ... not so much, and it takes me about a month to get back to regularity on coffee alone.

If I skip a day without a movement, yeah, it's uncomfortable.

Pro-tip, if you need an oral supplement to promote defecation, try inulin-based ones rather than psyllium husk varieties. Inulin acts as a pre-biotic (feeds the "good" bacteria in your gut) which indirectly acts as a laxative.
posted by porpoise at 4:42 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


The 3 and 3 rule is entirely excepted for those on holiday.
posted by Fupped Duck at 4:49 PM on September 11


"twice round the bowl and pointed at both ends"

the fuck
posted by prize bull octorok at 4:51 PM on September 11 [12 favorites]


MetaFilter: the QE2 sets sail out my butt.
posted by Wordshore at 4:51 PM on September 11 [12 favorites]


I've always meant to conduct a more formal tracking of my habits in this department after being vegan for a year and a half, but then I feel like my desire for data may outweigh any (frankly unclear) practical benefit I would receive from doing so.

Instead I'll just add that when I'm at Burning Man, my body will do absolutely anything to avoid the Cronenbergian horror of their portas, so I routinely go 3-5 days there without a single movement.
posted by mykescipark at 4:52 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


1-3 a day checking in. One is the 100% satisfaction guaranteed post coffee deposit. The others could come any time.

This is relevant to a theory I have. I'd imagine there has to be some correlation between BM frequency and BMI. Surely the longer something lingers on there the more calories your body can extract, right? Anyone know of any studies on this?
posted by cirrostratus at 4:55 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Is there a place where we can upload our poop spreadsheets to compare and contrast and run excel macros on each others poop? Asking for a friend.
posted by some loser at 5:06 PM on September 11 [13 favorites]


My body, apparently, disagrees with these findings...
posted by Windopaene at 5:10 PM on September 11


I tried to start tracking frequency and consistency, but it turns out I shouldn't have used log-log graph paper.
posted by BrotherCaine at 5:16 PM on September 11 [11 favorites]


So, early last year, someone put an unused portable travel bidet on our local Buy Nothing group. I 'bid' on it, and won it. Used it a few times, and it was mildly useful.

Then my gallbladder decided to throw huge ragers and stop paying rent. After it's eviction, my body had to deal with coping sans gallbladder, and my bowels decided that pooping multiple times a day was going to be their new lifestyle choice. Even now, a few months after removal, it still occurs.

That little travel bidet has been an absolute Godsend. I recommend it to those who are, uh, similarly gifted in the Poops Dept.
posted by spinifex23 at 5:19 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


im currently on like 50mg/day of oxy so i will probably not poop again until christmas, i am distress
posted by poffin boffin at 5:23 PM on September 11 [8 favorites]


Sometime you scare the turtle, sometimes the turtle scares you.
posted by benzenedream at 5:24 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


Almost every night at exactly 6:15pm, my 4yo son and 2yo daughter leave the dinner table to go poop together in the bathroom; him on the toilet and her squatting in her diaper next to him. It's bizarre and adorable.
posted by gatorae at 5:32 PM on September 11 [32 favorites]


I have never to my knowledge been constipated, and it would worry the hell (though clearly not the shit) out of me.
posted by aspersioncast at 5:35 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


I poop more when I’m at work, but that’s really because it’s the only place in the open office where nobody can see me.

When my wife wants to scare me she just has to say the words “open office pooping”.
posted by madcaptenor at 5:40 PM on September 11 [13 favorites]


Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach? When you fill up the chute something's got to exit to make room. Just sayin....seems logical and that's how it generally works for me.

This is definitely how it works for my infant. She forgets her manners and poops WHILE I AM FEEDING HER.
posted by madcaptenor at 5:43 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


I tried taking probiotics to get my microbiome back on track but it didn't seem to help, and research I've seen since then corroborates that they don't do a whole lot.

Greg_Ace I'm not your poop doctor but when I had my colonoscopy (that went wrong - don't ask) I found via this site the probiotic Saccharomyces boulardii which I found helped me more then any other over the counter probiotic to get back to my normal once a day. Magnesium supplements will do the trick as well.
posted by Ashwagandha at 5:47 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


I have a vast amount of oversharing I could do in this thread. I'll just say for now that my digestion has been a real adventure for the past 15 months.
posted by hippybear at 5:52 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


Is there a place where we can upload our poop spreadsheets to compare and contrast and run excel macros on each others poop?

I know a place downtown, they don't use Excel. But they do use macros. The Aristocrats!
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:52 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


If you're not pooping at least once a day how could you possibly call yourself an expert?
posted by saladin at 5:57 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


My husband and I are like the Jack Spratt & Spouse of pooping. He is coffee-fueled and goes multiple times a day, at apparently predictable-ish timed intervals. I am like once every two or three days and really it could happen at any time (though right in the middle of my afternoon run is a popular moment and as a result I know where all the public toilets are).

I don't understand (and am slightly disdainful of) his pooping habits and he doesn't understand mine, but we make it work, against the odds.

Our son seems to have settled into once a day, bringing balance once again to the Force. (Though when he was younger and drank a lot of cow's milk, he pooped constantly and was difficult to potty train as a result).
posted by soren_lorensen at 5:59 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


On his desk he had a plaster cast of what he described as "the perfect turd", which he had found outside a small town in India.

If he just found it on the ground, is he sure that it came from a human?

He also described the perfect motion as "twice round the bowl and pointed at both ends"

Does that describe the plaster cast as well? Must be quite impressive. Clearly he prefers "laying cable" to "dropping the kids at the pool."
posted by TedW at 5:59 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


MetaFilter: we're all oversharing
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 6:04 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


I poop more when I’m at work, but that’s really because it’s the only place in the open office where nobody can see me.

I've now had several coworkers who take one or more 45+ minute shits, every day, on the clock. In the old days the slack-off strategy was to go out with the smokers because they took so many breaks every day, but these days no one smokes and the action seems to have moved to the bathroom.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:07 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


Greg_Ace - one can still manage a three point landing.
posted by allium cepa at 6:09 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


I'm usually a once-a-day man, in the morning (after coffee, but before showering). I highly recommend this routine: it gets the task out of the way, and ensures a clean and sandalwood-scented anus for the remainder of the day.

I have considered posting a copy of the Bristol Stool Chart in my bathroom, for the convenience of guests.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 6:17 PM on September 11 [8 favorites]


For me, the morning cup of hot tea seems to be a somewhat reliable trigger to start my usually several-times-a-day requirement, unless I feel able to go before my morning shower. Not sure my anus ends up smelling like sandalwood, though.

On preview, my aunt, a nurse, had the Bristol scale poster on the wall. In her downstairs toilet. The one guests would use...

BTW, I just had to describe to my fiancee why I was laughing so much, so I described this thread to her. Her response was: "Mine are like Wizards. Never early or late, but exactly when they mean to arrive."
posted by Nice Guy Mike at 6:21 PM on September 11 [23 favorites]


I've now had several coworkers who take one or more 45+ minute shits, every day, on the clock.

I should have said: "I've had several malingering coworkers who..."; I've had other coworkers with IBS or other digestive issues which is different than just plain settling in with some reading material.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:24 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


by this logic hers make fireworks for parties as well
posted by poffin boffin at 6:24 PM on September 11 [9 favorites]


If there's one thing I've noticed, it's that the older I get the more of a production peeing and pooping becomes.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:25 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


Always wild to learn how everyone else's bodies work. I guess this is incentive to start keeping track, but I must be way out there at 3 standard deviations above the mean frequency.

I feel like everything typically makes its way out about 24 hours after I eat it. Vegetarian for so long (25+ years) that I don't remember what it's like not to be, coffee drinker, strong preference for peeing sitting down, way less prone to weight gain than you would think from the amount I eat. And I just ate a bunch of figs and will probably regret it.
posted by enf at 6:25 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


I remember reading Johnny Got His Gun and being completely confused by him even considering the possibility of reckoning time by the frequency of his bowel movements.
posted by ckape at 6:45 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


21 times a week? That’s three times a day.

A morning poop.

A post coffee poop.

A before bed poop.

For a pooper of any amount, I suggest once you get a bidet or “washlet” it makes the experience as a whole much better.
posted by mrzarquon at 6:55 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


reminder that post-canon JRK announced that wizards usually poop themselves in public and then immediately vanish the evidence; i am not sure what prompted this hilarrible tidbit of information from her but i hope it was someone asking about public toilet accessibility in the wizarding world.
posted by poffin boffin at 6:57 PM on September 11 [19 favorites]


Cleaning out the cat litter last week I found a poop fused into a perfect large letter X shape. I’m still confused.
posted by freecellwizard at 7:04 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


some loser: Is there a place where we can upload our poop spreadsheets to compare and contrast and run excel macros on each others poop?

I wrote a crapro that will format all the data into a poo-vit table.
posted by dr_dank at 7:16 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


Because Metafilter is destiny, I have now pooped for the evening. Thank you!
posted by invincible summer at 7:18 PM on September 11 [1 favorite]


Well, all I can say is I'm glad I had my first colonoscopy before y'all started sharing your stories. Three laxatives and gut biome wonky for months after? Yikes! I am eternally thankful for my boring colon, and the examination of it.

On a related note, a couple of buddies and I are planning to schedule our next go-around so we can commiserate by phone during the purge.
posted by calamari kid at 7:20 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


I'm just here to get my poop validated.
posted by srboisvert at 7:30 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


Is there a place where we can upload our poop spreadsheets to compare and contrast and run excel macros on each others poop? Asking for a friend.

Oh my god, I just had a flashback to when a college roommate was horrified by how often the rest of us pooped. (I can't remember if she pooped more or less than us.) She taped a sheet of paper next to the toilet so we could log our poop. I think it was 90% wacky hijinks, but she 10% was hoping we'd do it.
posted by Mavri at 7:36 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


it makes the experience as a whole much better

I saw what you did...I mean...never mind.
posted by datawrangler at 7:40 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]



I've now had several coworkers who take one or more 45+ minute shits, every day, on the clock.


I don't remember where I heard it, but,

Boss makes a dollar / I make a dime
That's why I shit/ On company time
posted by AnhydrousLove at 7:58 PM on September 11 [23 favorites]


My passive-aggressive work pooping takes the form of my choice of bathroom. When I'm feeling real spicy, I take myself up 6 floors to the EMBA program's bathrooms, because they've made it clear that we mere mortals in other units are not to use their snack machine or sit on their couches. So I sit on their thrones instead. (Also, I totally use their snack machine.)
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:06 PM on September 11 [14 favorites]


I am a regular pooper, as in daily, and I think it's because a) my diet has a pretty large amount of veggies and roughage, and b) I'm addicted to coffee and drink several cups of strong coffee every day.

There you go, kids. Coffee and greens will keep you regular!
posted by zardoz at 8:21 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


There's not a chance in hell that I'm posting about my poop on the internet.
posted by medusa at 8:27 PM on September 11 [8 favorites]


reminder that post-canon JRK announced that wizards usually poop themselves in public and then immediately vanish the evidence; i am not sure what prompted this hilarrible tidbit of information from her but i hope it was someone asking about public toilet accessibility in the wizarding world.
posted by poffin boffin at 6:57 PM on September 11
[3 favorites +] [!]


o_o say what now
posted by Hermione Granger at 8:29 PM on September 11 [26 favorites]


Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach?

Welcome to the gastrocolic reflex, present in babies but while the reflex is there for adults (there are intestinal spasms), they've often trained themselves out of associating the gastrocolic reflex with imminent pooping. Extremely strong gastrocolic reflex in adults can cause post-prandial diarrhea and is associated with IBS.

(I am not a doc, this is not medical advice.)

Everyone's personal plumbing is fundamentally different; comparing it to find some lost meaning is probably ultimately pointless if you seek Understanding or The True Pooping Way, but if you find it fun, go ahead.
posted by flibbertigibbet at 8:31 PM on September 11 [3 favorites]


Hermione, I just looked it up. Apparently they decided to go in for plumbing in the eighteenth century, which still leaves a whole lot of questions, none of which I want answered
posted by Countess Elena at 8:50 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Related, also from The Conversation:

Health Check: what happens when you hold in a fart?

How much flatus is normal?
It can be challenging for researchers to get people to sign up for experiments that measure farts. But thankfully, ten healthy adults volunteered to have the amount of gas they passed over a day quantified.

In a 24-hour period all the flatus they expelled was collected via a rectal catheter (ouch). They ate normally but to ensure a boost in gas production they also had to eat 200 grams (half a large can) of baked beans.

The participants produced a median total volume of 705ml of gas in 24 hours, but it ranged from 476ml to 1,490ml per person. Hydrogen gas was produced in the greatest volume (361ml over 24 hours), followed by carbon dioxide (68ml/24 hr). Only three adults produced methane, which ranged from 3ml/24 to 120ml/24 hr. The remaining gases, thought to mostly be nitrogen, contributed about 213ml/24 hr.
posted by Gotanda at 8:50 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


I guess in summation: IBS blows stuff out my butt, sometimes at high velocities.
posted by Caduceus at 9:13 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


The participants produced a median total volume of 705ml of gas in 24 hours, but it ranged from 476ml to 1,490ml per person. Hydrogen gas was produced in the greatest volume (361ml over 24 hours), followed by carbon dioxide (68ml/24 hr). Only three adults produced methane, which ranged from 3ml/24 to 120ml/24 hr. The remaining gases, thought to mostly be nitrogen, contributed about 213ml/24 hr.

*raises eyebrow spock style*

Fascinating.
posted by some loser at 9:17 PM on September 11


Times per week? Hell, I’ve been known to lose count in a single day.

I could do the proverbial “wish in one hand...” experiment and it’d be over before mid-morning.
posted by armeowda at 9:23 PM on September 11 [4 favorites]


" all undimensioned numbers are measurements on the Bristol scale"

And yet, number 2s are not Bristol scale measurements, they're the territory not the map.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 9:28 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


Also, on that "twice around the bowl" thing, was this a UK or a US expert? Because the differences in water level and bowl design make the former plausible and the latter heroic.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 9:28 PM on September 11 [9 favorites]


Since sobering up, which did wonders for any number of my bodily systems, my main eliminative problems were caused by my using a recipe for a keto version of DIY Soylent (now Complete Foods), which created an express lane on the old Hershey Highway, if you catch my drift. I'm proud to say that my current diet (high fiber, low meat) has put me back to being a usually once-a-day man, conveniently before the morning shower.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:41 PM on September 11


I used to have a roommate who would intentionally wait for days to poop as some kind of delayed gratification psychological game. He volunteered this information and I did not see fit to pry further. I think my exact response was, "huh."
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 9:43 PM on September 11 [7 favorites]


MetaFilter: some kind of delayed gratification psychological game
posted by Gotanda at 9:48 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


For those who are new here, please enjoy this classic AskMe thread: “Why do bookstores make me poop?
posted by matildaben at 10:27 PM on September 11 [15 favorites]


it's all fun and games until I mention the human centipede, of course
posted by ryanrs at 10:28 PM on September 11 [2 favorites]


I'm usually a once-a-day man, in the morning (after coffee, but before showering). I highly recommend this routine: it gets the task out of the way, and ensures a clean and sandalwood-scented anus for the remainder of the day.

What kind of job do you have that requires a sandalwood scented asshole to be present all day? Or are you unemployed and just, lets imagine, using a long flexible tube to sniff your asshole all day? I'm more than just curious. I NEED to know.
posted by some loser at 10:30 PM on September 11 [6 favorites]


a sandalwood scented asshole is its own reward
posted by ryanrs at 10:31 PM on September 11 [26 favorites]


I dated a sandalwood scented asshole once.

Once.
posted by The otter lady at 10:40 PM on September 11 [17 favorites]


I don't remember where I heard it, but,

Boss makes a dollar / I make a dime
That's why I shit/ On company time


I would have guessed you "heard it" on the walls of a bathroom stall?
posted by atoxyl at 11:08 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


I'm waiting for work to slow down enough for me to start a series of appointments with GI to investigate getting a fecal transplant because i've had about 4 solid poops in the past 15 months following a triple course of strong antibiotics across 5 weeks (the second two-at-once course to cure the intestinal infection I got after the first single course). I have all these other weird health things going on, and maybe that will clear those up too. (Anecdotal reports suggest it's possible.) If not, if I can just poop normally again, that would be a vast life improvement.

#midnightovershare
posted by hippybear at 11:18 PM on September 11 [5 favorites]


Ugh, hippybear.

I recently finished 8 months of antibiotics. I do not recommend this if it can be avoided. I'm pretty sure my food absorption ability was significantly impaired, as I lost weight despite eating more and more, coupled with weird i-am-not-getting-enough-of-something food cravings.

I hope your poops return to normal soon. The disruption can truly render daily life miserable.
posted by allium cepa at 12:34 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


I used to be quite regular. Like daily at the same time give or take an hour. And then I got pregnant and progesterone just messes with you in all sorts of ways including your digestion. I’m not used to the variation in schedule and.... quality. Sigh. I suppose it’s all sort of by design for me to get used to being a parent as I’ve heard that kids tend to disrupt bathroom vigils for like the first 10 years.
posted by like_neon at 12:47 AM on September 12


I could do the proverbial “wish in one hand...” experiment and it’d be over before mid-morning.

My favorite response to the proverb is always "what if my wish is that I had shit in my hand?"
posted by aspersioncast at 4:57 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


Type 4 (“Like a sausage or snake, smooth and soft”) is the Nirvana of all bowel actions

I want this in needlepoint hanging on my bathroom wall.

So many nuggets of wisdom in this thread.
posted by duffell at 5:26 AM on September 12 [6 favorites]


"Isn't pooping pretty much related to the physical presence of a new meal in your stomach? When you fill up the chute something's got to exit to make room."

This is called the gastrocolic reflex, which most people are familiar with from newborns, who often poop their guts out whenever they eat, requiring pediatricians to explain to concerned parents that, no, that's just how digestive systems work. (In adults it's a less-enthusiastic reflex that can, but doesn't necessarily, get excited EVERY time you eat.)

On the flip side, though, infants can go 10 days without pooping before the doctor gets concerned. And then that same infant will poop 6 times a day a few weeks later.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:48 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


The participants produced a median total volume of 705ml of gas in 24 hours, but it ranged from 476ml to 1,490ml per person. Hydrogen gas was produced in the greatest volume (361ml over 24 hours), followed by carbon dioxide (68ml/24 hr). Only three adults produced methane, which ranged from 3ml/24 to 120ml/24 hr. The remaining gases, thought to mostly be nitrogen, contributed about 213ml/24 hr.

In other fart related information, my son and I recently watched the film Thunderpants and based solely on the very reliable information provided in that likely well-researched film you can also use your excess farts to power spacecraft.
posted by Ashwagandha at 5:48 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


My only comments are ... anal fissure, and sphincterotomy. I will not link, but google if you dare. I now, among other things, eat a lot of foods with fiber, and aspire to a once a day poop, though it does not always happen.
posted by gudrun at 5:54 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


This thread gave me an opportunity to look up the Cloaca Machine (SFW...the video has a little bit of cussing, but it's worth watching). I'd remembered a different machine that made an appearance on one of the American daytime talk shows, but this was the first link returned with a google search for "machine that makes poop" and I don't want to investigate any further...
posted by msbrauer at 6:29 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


Ugh.
Used to be fairly reliable, coffee-fueled, once daily.
Then one day, I found my bike heading for a cliff, and had to lay it down. SLAM!

It was a few days latter when I suddenly had to do an unexpected mopping of the floor. There's a pesky little spot of tissue that is supposed to hold the Sigmoid colon. It breaks too easy. Doc said, "We aren't really designed for walking upright". When that breaks, the Sigmoid likes to wander down the road, and take a peak outside. This results in a severe absence of control.

Now it just happens. A cough, sneeze, laugh, or sometimes, just getting out of a chair, is all it takes. I sure am glad I'm retired.
posted by Goofyy at 6:37 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


I have cross stitched a poop, willing to make y'all wall hangings for a small fee. OK a medium fee.

I had an IBS-ish ailment for many years which went away after I quit birth control pills. Now pooping is joy. But I marvel - MARVEL at how some people's normal is sitting in the washroom for twenty minutes to make this happen when I'm a 90-second gal. If it takes longer, for me, something is WRONG.
posted by wellred at 6:46 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


I have never quite forgotten my mother, in response to an offhand comment about my daily poop, saying, "You go every day?" with unmistakable envy in her voice.
posted by dlugoczaj at 7:18 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


I don't count or record.
I just go when I get the urge - whenever it is, though that may be modified by lack of convenience.
posted by Burn_IT at 8:06 AM on September 12


I'm pretty regularly three times a day, sometimes four. And usually two of those are at work, and tend to last around 15-20 minutes, because I like to read/play games on my phone while getting paid to do so.

I don't understand the 90 second poopers... I pee for longer than that! How do you know you got it all out??
posted by Grither at 8:07 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


When I was a kid I loved Barney Miller, especially Abe Vigoda's character Fish. It always tickled me to no end, his obsession with the bathroom. I couldn't understand why a man would spend so much time even thinking about such things. it was ridiculous to me.

Nowadays, I'm a 50-something guy with celiac disease and uppity guts and I totally, totally get it.
posted by davelog at 8:36 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


On the flip side, though, infants can go 10 days without pooping before the doctor gets concerned. And then that same infant will poop 6 times a day a few weeks later.

A friend of my wife had one of those babies that didn't poop for a long time, and then when she did poop he described her poop as being like a chocolate soft serve machine that wouldn't stop.

On Facebook.

Now that baby is about ten years old and I know this about her and I feel bad about that.

This is why we don't post about the baby's poops on social media.
posted by madcaptenor at 9:01 AM on September 12 [6 favorites]


I pee a lot, so the family asks me to use the bathroom before either will be using it for a long time. As a sitter, sometimes I get surprise poops. As in, I thought I just needed to pee, but now this poop thing is happening, ok. The mister, as a stander, is utterly baffled by the idea of a surprise poop. So plus one to showbiz_liz's theory.

Also, it's not even 1 pm and I've already pooped twice.
posted by Ruki at 9:44 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


duffell: So many nuggets of wisdom in this thread.

Many of them imbedded with kernels of truth.
posted by hanov3r at 9:52 AM on September 12 [13 favorites]


Grither: At the risk of oversharing...well, there's a certain unease if I'm not finished, and a... sense of satisfaction (?!) if I am. Like I've completed a task. My colon and I know each other well. Also, 90 second pee? Can we discuss how much pain I'd be in if I had that much pee stored up? (Let's not discuss that.) My tiny bladder doth weep.
posted by wellred at 9:55 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


I have had periods for years and I only just learned that people who menstruate can end up pooping more often while on their period due to prostaglandins. Thanks for clearing up a mystery, science!
posted by zoetrope at 9:58 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


I probably should've said "I've had pees that last longer than that!"

It's not every pee.
posted by Grither at 9:59 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]



MetaFilter: taking a casual poop on a whim


No....

MetaFilter: more likely to wait to poop until they Really Really Need To Poop,
posted by y2karl at 10:07 AM on September 12


I went to Boy Scout camp when I was 13. The bathrooms were something extra special. 7 days, with one poop on day 5. The next year, again one poop, this time on day 4.

OMG same. I learned to hold it in for days from those camps.
posted by numaner at 11:41 AM on September 12


Thank y'all for distracting me from my depression with this thread. I've been blissfully reliving the glorious poop I took in Vegas in '97 for the last 90 minutes.
Twice around the bowl, tapered at both ends, like a damn Viking
posted by biddeford at 11:46 AM on September 12 [7 favorites]


None of the Vikings I know are tapered at either end, much less BOTH, to be honest.
posted by hanov3r at 12:00 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


My only comments are ... anal fissure, and sphincterotomy. I will not link, but google if you dare. I now, among other things, eat a lot of foods with fiber, and aspire to a once a day poop, though it does not always happen.

I uhh... know what you mean. I actively try to go once a day now, usually after my afternoon coffee in a specific bathroom in my office building. I have coworkers on MeFi and I can't divulge more than that because it's a sacred location.

Also I'm reminded of this story/joke, and I can't remember where I read it, and Google is failing me:
"My coworkers and I usually go out to lunch together, and we'll be there for about an hour or so and then head back. There's an older man in the group and almost every time we come back to the building he'll tell us to go ahead and he'll catch up as he has been holding it in and he heads to the bathroom. One day I finally got curious to ask, "Why do you always wait until we get back to work to go to the bathroom, couldn't you go wherever we just came from?". He chuckled and said "Remember this for as long as you work: Always poop on someone else's dime.""
posted by numaner at 12:09 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


that's an awfully small target
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:14 PM on September 12 [7 favorites]


As a sitter, sometimes I get surprise poops. As in, I thought I just needed to pee, but now this poop thing is happening, ok. The mister, as a stander, is utterly baffled by the idea of a surprise poop. So plus one to showbiz_liz's theory.

one of my favorite jokes from Michelle Wolf is the benefit of sitting while you pee
posted by numaner at 12:18 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


How do you know you got it all out??

at the risk of derailing this into that discussion, squatting even just a little bit (via those potty stools) really help ensure that you get it all out
posted by numaner at 12:19 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


Time spent wiping would be better spent doing almost anything else.

Paper is indigestible by humans.

After a meal eat a dozen squares of toilet paper.

When taking a shit the ball of toilet paper will be the last thing that comes out, wiping everything clean from the inside out!

That is how I learned that one does not poop in the order that one eats, that one can not poop for 5 days, that sometimes the Bristol Stool scale is not enough and one has to use the Mohs' Scale of Mineral Hardness to describe a poop, and that one can fail 3rd grade science fair.
posted by Dr. Curare at 12:40 PM on September 12 [18 favorites]


How do you know you got it all out??

you know those joke shop peanut cans that when you open them a couple of spring-loaded fake snakes erupt from inside? it's kind of like that.
posted by poffin boffin at 1:13 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


I don't think I've ever gone a day without pooping. Sounds awful. Also, people who aren't shitting regularly must have just the worst farts.
posted by GoblinHoney at 1:14 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


I'd be lucky if I can go every other day.
On a related note, the best thing for number 2 is a bidet. No more smearing and spreading it thin with toilet paper. Water is simply the best cleaner. Try it and you will never go back to paper again.
posted by SookieLogan at 1:27 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


What this thread really needs is a pair of histograms with poop freqs and sit wipers and stand wipers to determine A.) if there is a correlation and B.) if so, which style is chosen by our more experienced poopers.

(That is poop frequencies not poop freaks.)
posted by bukvich at 1:50 PM on September 12 [3 favorites]


When taking a shit the ball of toilet paper will be the last thing that comes out, wiping everything clean from the inside out!

I'm kinda surprised there isn't a bigger movement [sic] for human pipeline pigging.
posted by GuyZero at 1:52 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


There's the new t-shit design:

Metafilter: poop freaks
posted by Greg_Ace at 1:52 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


t-shit design

Intentional?
posted by hanov3r at 2:05 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


I’m going to use this post as an excuse to tell one of my favorite stories about my dad. One day when I was a teenager, my parents and I were eating dinner, when, out of nowhere, my dad pipes up with “Do you know why one end of your shit is pointy?” My mom and I exchanged a baffled glance as he then proclaimed, as if imparting some great wisdom, “Because your asshole slams shut,” before going back to his Salisbury steak like he hadn’t just dropped this amazing non-sequitor during the commercial break of Jeopardy.
posted by Ruki at 2:10 PM on September 12 [12 favorites]


I just recently (gods help me) watched the CHiPs reboot movie, with Dax Shepard as Jon and Michael Pena as Ponch. This exchange, after former motocross rider Jon admits to taking a LOT of pain killers, is thread-appropriate:

[Jon] Hey, I know you were joking back there, but I want you to know I don't abuse my medication.
[Ponch] Oh, I wasn't joking. How often do you shit?
[Jon] How often do I shit?
[Ponch] Yeah.
[Jon] The normal amount. Like every two or three weeks.
posted by hanov3r at 2:11 PM on September 12 [9 favorites]


t-shit design

Intentional?


No, but now I wish it had been!
posted by Greg_Ace at 2:25 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


Poopin' on company time.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:29 PM on September 12


One of the drivers for humane and low-stress livestock handling is that animals are auctioned by live weight and, well, cattle get the runs when they're stressed and that's just money out of your pocket.

So that's your Slow Food fact-of-the-day.
posted by stet at 5:35 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]




Today's been a much more reasonable three, I'm feeling much better. Yesterday was worse than normal, but in a way that's not particularly uncommon.

It occurred me that I should add this to this thread for sure: Parents, don't give your teens accutane. It's been linked with Crohn's Disease, which my gastroenterologist is certain I don't have. And he's right, I'm sure. It seems to have a lot of symptoms I don't have.

But I sure fucking have IBS-D, which sure is a lot like one of the major symptoms of Crohn's Disease. I don't know how easy acne scars are to get rid of medically, but the IBS-D has been difficult. The last thing he tried was a new brand name thing that my insurance required a prior op for, and I would have had to stop drinking completely, and we spend so much on medical shit already these days, I just said fuck it and didn't bother to have them call for it and decided I'll just talk to him more about it when I have new insurance.

(It's possible I'm being alarmist. One of the other possible causes is stress. I'm pretty introverted and I don't like my day job very much. It's possible it'll get better when I finally manage to find something new. I'll report back if that happens, I guess?)
posted by Caduceus at 7:16 PM on September 12


I've been laughing ruefully over this. From 9/2 til...oh, yesterday...it was upwards of every hour. From 9/2 til 9/8, it was accompanied by simultaneous vomiting.

I spent the night of 9/3 - my 48th birthday - til the morning of 9/4 in the ER with severe dehydration and a busted hemorrhoid. Food poisoning isn't as bad as Crohn's or IBS, but it's a plenty scary preview, and my heart goes out to everyone who deals with that shit. So to speak.

I've never been so happy to NOT poop as I was yesterday.
posted by MissySedai at 9:58 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


My dr has been nagging me to have a colonoscopy for years, butt after reading this thread, I shall continue to respectfully decline.
posted by a humble nudibranch at 11:10 PM on September 12


You really shouldn't decline it, a humble nudibranch. Reactions like those above are unusual, and a colonoscopy can actually prevent cancer by literally nipping it in the bud.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:14 PM on September 12 [6 favorites]


Yeah, nudibranch, please get the colonoscopy if your doctor advises it. I've had two with no ill effects and will probably get my third sometime soon. There are some bad reactions as described in this thread, but they are rare. Colon cancer on the other hand--not so rare. It is a really good idea to avoid cancer if you can.
posted by Gotanda at 12:26 AM on September 13


Meanwhile, in Britain, the seven sweet words that many Brits heard while being diet-shamed by a (non doctor) media personality on TV.

(and yes, they did look at it together, on tv, later in the program) hashtag poo in a box
posted by Wordshore at 1:42 AM on September 13


What the what? 21 times a week. I do not want to know what they are eating. Or why.

21 times/week aka 3 times/day sounds about right. I eat a lot of lentils, brown rice, and fresh fruits and vegetables.

I usually poop about 30-to-60 minutes after every meal. My digestive system is basically an assembly line -- new stuff coming in for processing means it's time to ship the old stuff out the door.

I don't really understand how other people's bodies save up multiple meals between poops, much less multiple days worth of food!
posted by Jacqueline at 5:50 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


P.S. I have a Squatty Potty and I love it.
posted by Jacqueline at 5:52 AM on September 13 [2 favorites]


Do you guys spend like half your life in the bathroom?

Huh? How long does it take you to poop?

Most of my trips to the bathroom are under 5 minutes, tops, including very thorough wiping.

Sometimes I get distracted by my phone, but it's unusual for the actual pooping activity to ever take more than a minute.
posted by Jacqueline at 5:59 AM on September 13


You really shouldn't decline it, a humble nudibranch.

I agree. The process itself was trouble- and pain-free, the part that (I think) messed me up was that the full pre-prep process was overkill for my system and I didn't stop once it was (literally) clear that I was sufficiently cleaned out. I wonder if the prep steps were geared toward covering all types of people, including ones who'd need the full-course cleanse to properly clear their colon for the camera - though that's pure speculation on my part.

I'd say definitely don't decline it if your doctor thinks it's needed, but talk to them about the prep steps rather than just blindly accept the printed instructions.
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:35 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


(What I went through was a minor inconvenience compared to dealing with colon cancer!!)
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:40 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


I spent the night of 9/3 - my 48th birthday - til the morning of 9/4 in the ER with severe dehydration and a busted hemorrhoid. Food poisoning isn't as bad as Crohn's or IBS, but it's a plenty scary preview, and my heart goes out to everyone who deals with that shit. So to speak.

*winces* I've had food-spawned food poisoning twice, once on a vacation and once during the aftermath of a friend's wedding. It's an experience that a friend once euphemistically described as "two exits, no waiting". My sympathies.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:16 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


> P.S. I have a Squatty Potty and I love it.

Also very useful for us in the 21+ club.
posted by mrzarquon at 12:15 PM on September 13 [1 favorite]


My dr has been nagging me to have a colonoscopy for years, butt after reading this thread, I shall continue to respectfully decline.

Please don't decline it.

The Husband's cousin kept declining it. She finally acquiesced after she started pooping blood. It was too late. She died of Stage 4 colon cancer about 8 painful months later, at the age of 56.
posted by MissySedai at 10:43 PM on September 13 [5 favorites]


I need to get a colonoscopy sooner rather than later; my father had colon cancer found in him around age 70, and his mother had it in her late 70s. Being in my late 40s, I mentioned it to my somewhat new family doctor (who is aware of my father's history) and he said "oh, you don't need that yet, wait 'til you're 50."

Which... surprised me.

I do joke sometimes that the hot pepper products that are constantly in my diet have probably melted away potential problems, but I'd rather know. But I also have to figure out if I need to do anything in particular to keep my insurance company from going "that wasn't specially directed by your doctor, you now owe us $12,000 and one of your eyes."
posted by delfin at 7:51 AM on September 14 [1 favorite]


If you eat more vegetables, whole grains, fruit, beans, and other nutrition-dense foods and less meat, dairy, white carbs, you're almost certainly going to be pooping daily, at least. I feel much better when this is the case. For anybody else who is an old woman, or has a kid with trouble staying dry at night, there is a pediatrician promoting the information that 95% of urinary incontinence is related to constipation. I have found this to be quite accurate.

Metafilter has had some interesting poop threads, where else does poop get discussed with any semblance of fact?
posted by theora55 at 11:03 AM on September 16 [1 favorite]


...where else does poop get discussed with any semblance of fact?

An In-Depth Analysis of a Piece of Shit: Distribution of Schistosoma mansoni and Hookworm Eggs in Human Stool

Stefanie J. Krauth, Jean T. Coulibaly, Stefanie Knopp, Mahamadou Traoré, Eliézer K. N'Goran, Jürg Utzinger.

PLOS. Published: December 20, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0001969
posted by Wordshore at 2:48 PM on September 16 [3 favorites]


Late to the party (and thus, a party pooper?)--but I just had to add that I mentioned this thread to my wife, who is a trans woman, and she was vastly relieved that the surprise poop was actually a common thing for women (or other regularly sitting pissers). I hadn't known about this before, but apparently the surprises were a somewhat unsettling part of the transition from standing to sitting pisser. We all feel better now.
posted by dlugoczaj at 9:18 AM on September 19 [1 favorite]


THEORY VINDICATED!
posted by showbiz_liz at 9:32 AM on September 19 [3 favorites]


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