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Is pooping too frequently during periods normal?

Yes, your period messes up with your pooping.

You might notice that you need to take frequent trips to the bathroom when you are on your periods. When you menstruate, you poop way more than usual and it may seem like your digestive system goes out of whack. Don t worry you are not alone as it happens to many women. We tell you why you tend to poop more during your periods.

What causes you to poop more during periods?

  • During periods your body produces prostaglandins (which have a hormone-like effect) that cause your uterus to contract. The prostaglandins also act on the smooth muscles of the digestive tract which triggers more frequent bowel movements suggests a study published in the journal Gut [1]. Prostaglandins can also make the bowel movements looser than normal. So those prostaglandins are to blame for sudden bouts of diarrhoea during your periods.
  • Stress and anxiety can also affect your bowel movements. If you are always stressed about staining your seat during periods, you might just find yourself frequenting the toilet more often. There are more neurons in your gastrointestinal tract than your spinal cord and brain and getting nervous can certainly throw your bowels out of whack suggests a study published in the World Journal of Gastroenterology [2].

What can you do to regulate your bowel movements during periods?

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Luckily, there are a few things you can do to keep your bowels running smoothly during that time of the month. If you are loading up on fibre-rich fruits and vegetables, along with simple carbohydrates, you may find yourself pooping less. Stay away from chocolate, bread and fried foods as they can cause digestive woes and wreck havoc on your stomach when you are in your periods. Also, avoid any gastrointestinal stimulants such as coffee. These 6 foods also trigger loose motions.

Tip-- However, make sure that you see a doctor if your bowel movements suddenly change especially if you are not in your period. If you have IBS, the symptoms of alternating diarrhoea and constipation can get worse when you menstruate. Also, read why your poop smells worse than normal.

References:

[1] Houghton, L. A., Lea, R., Jackson, N., & Whorwell, P. J. (2002). The menstrual cycle affects rectal sensitivity in patients with irritable bowel syndrome but not healthy volunteers. Gut, 50(4), 471 474.

[2] Qin, H.-Y., Cheng, C.-W., Tang, X.-D., & Bian, Z.-X. (2014). The impact of psychological stress on irritable bowel syndrome. World Journal of Gastroenterology : WJG, 20(39), 14126 14131. http://doi.org/10.3748/wjg.v20.i39.14126.

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