How Much Should You Poop?

We might not want to admit it, but we all talk about it. Poop.

If the body isn’t eliminating the food you eat on a regular basis, it can hold two to three pounds of waste. Aside from feeling more comfortable in that skinny section of your closet, staying regular is beneficial for weight loss and overall health. We spoke with nutritionist Jess Cording for her take on staying regular and the power of pooping.

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“Regularity rids the body of toxins,” says Cording. “Everything just works better and you will feel less bloated if you make sure your regularity is in check.”

According to Cording, how much you should poop is pretty basic. “What you eat weighs something and the body uses what we eat,” she says. “Some of it needs to move through until it is excreted, it has mass, it has weight, and that can be reflected on the scale.”

The average person typically goes once a day but since everyone is different, Cording lists a suggested range from twice a day to every other day.

Hallelujah! So we all really weigh less than we think?

Buzz kill: Not really.

“The scale can alter two to three pounds but a big jump could also be a sign of water retention,” says Cording. “Many people get off a plane or are dehydrated from a lack of water and notice a significant increase in their weight.”

Here are three ways to stay on target and avoid those mean massive jumps on the scale: 

1. Stay hydrated throughout the day. The Mayo Clinic recommends 3 liters of water per day for men and about 2.2 liters for women.

2. Consume 25-35 grams of fiber spread throughout the course of the day.

3. Take a probiotic supplement filled with living, good bacteria. Cording suggests choosing one from the refrigerator section in your local health food store.

And while the simple solution might be to pop a stimulant, Cording recommends touching base with your doctor first. “If you aren’t regular it could be a sign of something else going on in your body,” she says. “It never hurts to have a conversation with your health care provider so that you can be guided in the right direction for your particular body and lifestyle.”

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