How many times do you go for a number two every day? It might sound like a personal and unpleasant question, but that doesn't mean it's not one you should ask yourself regularly – because it's related closely to your health and a lack of bowl movements, or an abundance, can be a sign of potential problems or of an insubstantial diet. But what exactly is normal?
How Many Bowel Movements Should You Have?
On a daily basis a good number of bowel movements is anywhere between 1-3. Anything more could be a sign of diarrhoea suggesting you're not getting everything out in one go, or that it's passing straight through you too quickly perhaps as a result of an irritated stomach lining. On the other hand though anything less than once a day could be a problem for you as the toxins in the manure can pass back through the mucous membranes and cause problems in your body – you're getting rid of it for a reason. Alternatively it might suggest constipation, a bad diet or some kind of blockage.
Anything more than four bowel movements a day, or anything less than one a day is a cause for concern and you should try altering your diet and monitor the situation while being aware of any other potential symptoms. Seek medical attention if the problem does not subside.
Typically these three bowel movements will take place first thing in the morning, 20 minutes after lunch and just before bed and you might find that you have any one or all three of these.
While 1-3 bowel movements are normal there is a lot of variation both day to day and between individuals. This is based on a whole range of factors. For the individual the speed of their metabolism, their habits, their body weight and more can have an impact. Even your psychology can play a role and if we are nervous we can find ourselves making more regular visits to the toilet. Conditions such as IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) are thought to be linked to stress.
The differences per day meanwhile are the result of what you eat and of course the more you eat then the more you will need to visit the toilet. As a very rough guide you can generally expect for the number of bowel movements to correlate with the number of meals you ate that day – three meals a day should result in three bowel movements, while two meals should result in two.
Ways to Improve Your Regularity
If you have an unusual number of bowel movements then you should visit the doctor and ask for advice as well as trying to improve your diet with fibre (which acts by clearing out your colon) and drinking lots of water. At the same time try to remember to go and to confront any stress you might be facing in your life that could be resulting in irregular movements.