Coffee is a strong drink. Regardless of whether it's part of your morning ritual or how you get over the afternoon break, this energetic drink is also reputed to help you shit.
A new study presented at Digestive Disease Week found that this may have nothing to do with it. Caffeine content (as previous studies suggest) and associated changes in gut microbiota and increased bowel movement are likely.
The researchers gave caffeine and decaffeinated coffee coffee to rats for three days and found that this was the case throughout the period. Small bowel could contract better regardless of caffeine content.
They hypothesized that gut microbiotics also play a role and decided to investigate how coffee affects bacteria in the gut. To find out, they mixed rat crap and coffee in a petri dish and found that the number of bacteria was decreasing.
Interestingly, they found that the higher the amount of coffee in the Petri dish, whether or not containing caffeine, the fewer microbes were present. They also found that the bacteria in the poop of the rat had decreased within three days.
Further research is needed to determine if the coffee eliminates good or bad bacteria. This is probably partly due to changes in the intestinal microbiome.
What does that mean for us? Experts suggest that we should ideally poop one to three times a day, and it's best if our food actually stimulates bowel movements. If you have less bowel movement or pain while shitting, you may be constipated, said Drs. Vincent Pedre, integrative bowel health specialist and member of the collective of mbg, and it may be useful to drink a coffee to boost a few bowel movements.
In fact, the present study shows that more research is needed to investigate whether coffee is a viable option for constipation following things like abdominal surgery. However, before you start to consume more cups of coffee, you should look for signs more than three times a day that you are already overpowering as this could be a sign of a more serious problem.
As with the inclusion of food or drink in your diet, you want to listen to your body and monitor how it responds to the changes. Whether you feel you need a little coffee to get things going, or you're feeling good about where you are, it's exciting to learn the science of why this favorite drink makes us suck.