Why is poo so taboo? Let's talk toilet and bowel movements

Signs, symptoms and prevention


  • Limit your takeaways and ready meals especially fried, fatty or spicy foods - they can play havoc with bowels
  • Coffee and alcohol can also irritate bowels
  • Aim to drink two litres of water a day
  • Eat regularly - it's better for your bowels and skipping meals can interfere with bowel habit
  • Don't overdose on fibre intake - too much can lead to bloating and discomfort
  • Fruit and veg are healthy for all kinds of reasons but also reduce the risk of bowel cancer
  • Keep a food and poo journal to share with your doctor so (s)he can see where the problem might lie
  • Keep an eye out for consistent changes in bowel habits rather than day-to-day changes
  • Some medicines can upset bowel movements so check side effects with your GP
  • See a doctor immediately if you have cause for concern e.g. severe constipation/diarrhoea/blood in stools/soreness, discomfort, pain, itching, or a lump hanging down outside the back passage.
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