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Weight Loss and Bowel Habits

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Whether we want to discuss them or not, we all know that our bowel movements are an integral part of a healthy life. Our movements, or lack thereof, affect how we feel and to an extent how we look in the case of belly bloating. Also, if you have followed weight loss fads and gimmicks, you have seen, or may have even tried, any number of the numerous products available that promise that you will lose weight by better pooping through the use of their magical weight loss pills. These product manufacturers usually market their products through the use of carefully crafted messages where they promise that you are going to be de-toxifying your body with a bowel movement first thing in the morning. But, what is the real scoop an this?

Is pooping an effective weight loss strategy?

Well, of course you are going to weigh a little bit lighter after a bowel movement, but this little bit of difference is about as meaningless as losing water weight from your body during exercise. It has zero impact on your body fat percentage no matter what these product hucksters will tell you. To lose disease-causing body fat, you need to burn more calories than you consume. You can do this by exercising more and changing your dietary habits by cutting out added sugars, processed foods and increasing your fiber and water intake. You do not need any type of laxative in your life in order to lose body fat.

Well, if we only lose a little bit of weight when we poop, why do we feel so much slimmer finally pooping after being constipated or after a large meal?

It’s because pooping reduces gas and bloating. This generally helps you feel more comfortable. The longer poop stays in the intestines, the drier and heavier it will become. While most people poop once a day, it’s considered normal to poop as frequently as three times a day or as little as once every three days. All of this can be controlled through good nutritional habits and exercise.

But dietary fiber has been linked to lower body fat by keeping you regular!

Well yes, fiber does help keep you regular in the bathroom, and it is a good weight-management tool. But here is why – high-fiber foods help control blood sugar levels, and they tend to be more filling, which means you’re likely to eat less of them. Fiber-dense foods also tend to be lower in calories than many others.

When we consume unhealthy, processed foods  chronic, low-grade inflammation is often caused . Foods high in processed sugars, like cereals, candy bars and other snack foods, can raise the risk of chronic inflammation in the body and may potentially affect digestion and weight. No amount of laxatives or toxin reducing magic weight loss pills will ever fix this for you if you do not change your nutritional habits. This point is not even close to being medically or scientifically arguable. You have to change your habits! You can help yourself by ensuring you consume enough of two different types of fiber (soluble and insoluble), both of which are important in promoting good health and digestion. Soluble fiber is found in oat bran, nuts and beans and is known for slowing digestion. Insoluble fiber, found in wheat bran, vegetables and whole grains, adds bulk to your stool and helps food to pass more quickly.

A lot of people confuse abdominal distension from bloating as being fat. The reality is that there are certain causes of bloating, such as lactose intolerance, celiac sprue, food allergies, irritable bowel syndrome, and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth which make an individual feel as if they can’t lose the weight even though they may be.

The bottom line is the most fundamental cause of weight gain is the mismanagement of calories by eating low nutrition, high calorie foods. Everything we do wrong regarding food and exercise is compounded by the lack of this fundamental principle. That is why so many efforts to manage weight appear to be futile.

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