Let’s get this shocking fact out of the way – you probably have been pooping the wrong way since the day you were toilet-trained as a toddler, according to science.
Now that you’ve recovered from your shock, take a sip of water and let me explain.
Giulia Enders, a German microbiologist, dropped this enormous bomb on most of us who have been using the sit-down toilet for as long as we can remember. According to her, the correct way to poop is to squat while doing the deed. On second thought, this makes sense – after all, humans have been squatting for years until the advent of the modern lavatory. Apparently the older generation in Japan who still prefers squatting knows something we don’t.
In her best-selling book Charming Bowels, Enders explains how sitting on the toilet can be harmful. Our bodies are designed to squat as our gut cannot “open the hatch completely” when we’re sitting down.
She says: “1.2 billion people around the world who squat have almost no incidence of diverticulosis and fewer problems with piles. We in the west, on the other hand, squeeze our gut tissue until it comes out of our bottoms.”
Another problem is constipation, which 80% of people suffer from at some time during their lives. A 2012 survey in Singapore puts the number of chronic constipation sufferers at one in four people.
So what can you do to prevent nasty piles and make your bowel movements less of a pain in the ass? Short of ditching the modern restroom and digging a hole in your backyard, one easy trick is to sit with your feet on a little stool and leaning forward.
I wonder what the founder of the World Toilet Organisation, Jack Sim, would think about this. Regardless, we hope you’ve digested this simple tip.