Everybody poops, but nobody really talks about it. But while putting a lid on all potty talk may keep conversations civilized, it may mean we’re missing out on valuable clues to our health. Bowel movements are a necessity of life. They allow you to empty waste from your diet via your intestines. While all people make bowel movements, the frequency varies greatly.
Some researchers indicate that anywhere from three bowel movements a day to three a week can be normal. Sometimes the consistency of a person’s stool can be a more significant indicator of bowel health than frequency. However, if a person doesn’t poop often enough or too frequently, both can cause severe health problems.
Your poop can tell you if you’re eating enough fiber and drinking enough water, or if your digestive system is processing food too slowly or too quickly. Also, lasting changes in your bowel habits or the appearance of your poop can be a sign of a medical condition that requires treatment.
What is nausea?
Nausea is stomach discomfort and the sensation of wanting to vomit. Nausea can be a precursor to vomiting the contents of the stomach. The condition has many causes and can often be prevented. Nausea can stem from a variety of causes.
Why do I get nauseated when I have to poop?
Many people feel nauseous sensations when they have to poop, as a result of the accumulation of toxins in their body triggered by the slow movement of food through the colon. Beyond these nauseous feelings, they can also cause constipation, and lead to stomach distention and bloating.
Some people are highly sensitive to motion or to certain foods, medications, or the effects of certain medical conditions. All these things can cause nausea.
Nausea consists of complex subjective symptom that ranges from uncomfortable to agonizing and may accompany many diseases and conditions including diseases within and outside the gut as well as by circulating toxins, drugs, and metabolic disorders. Chronic nausea with or without vomiting associated with delayed gastric emptying is defined as gastroparesis.
Nausea can stem from a variety of causes. Some people are highly sensitive to motion or to certain foods, medications, or the effects of certain medical conditions. All these things can cause nausea. Common causes of nausea are described below.
Heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can cause your stomach’s contents to move back up your esophagus when you eat. This creates a burning sensation that causes nausea.
Infection or virus
Bacteria or viruses can affect the stomach and lead to nausea. Foodborne bacteria can cause an illness known as food poisoning. Viral infections can also cause nausea.
Taking certain medications — for example, cancer treatments like chemotherapy — can upset the stomach or contribute to nausea. Be sure to carefully read the medication information for any new treatments you may be taking.
Reading this information and talking to your doctor about any medications and treatments you’re receiving can help you minimize medication-related nausea.
Motion sickness and seasickness
Motion sickness and seasickness can result from a bumpy ride on a vehicle. This movement can cause the messages transmitted to the brain to not sync up with the senses, leading to nausea, dizziness, or vomiting.
Overeating or eating certain foods, such as spicy or high-fat foods, can upset the stomach and cause nausea. Eating foods you’re allergic to can also cause nausea.
Intense pain can contribute to nausea symptoms. This is true for painful conditions such as pancreatitis, gallbladder stones, and or kidney stones.
Ulcers, or sores in the stomach or the lining of the small intestine, can contribute to nausea. When you eat, an ulcer can cause a burning sensation and sudden nausea.
Nausea is also a symptom of several other medical conditions, including:
- benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
- ear infection
- heart attack
- intestinal blockage
- liver failure or liver cancer
What can I do to increase my colon health?
The most important way to be sure your colon is healthy, especially if you’re over the age of 50 and/or have a family history of colon disease, is to get a colonoscopy. Before and after the age of 50, there are many studies on how to avoid cancer of the colon or at least reduce your risk factors. However, one of the most frequently asked questions is: Does a colon detox work, and if so, how does it cleanse your colon? The answer is: We really don’t know. There haven’t been enough scientifically-broad studies on the effect of a colon cleanse.
Before using any of the following scientifically-studied suggestions, consult your doctor to see if any of your medical conditions would prohibit you from following these rules provided by the American Heart Association:
- Eat fruits and vegetables that are high in fiber to help your colon move waste products out of your system. Eat about two cups of fruit and three cups of vegetables daily. Good sources of fruits and veggies with high fiber include (but aren’t limited to): artichokes, apples, pears (with skin), berries (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries), dates, figs, prunes, beans (baked, black, lima, pinto), broccoli, chick-peas, lentils, parsnips, peas, pumpkin, winter squash. This list was provided by the American College of Gastroenterology.
- Eat a lot of high-fiber grains (about three servings a day). Also, eat another three servings of quality grain products, such as pasta and oatmeal.
- Eat two to three servings of low-fat dairy products, especially yogurt with an “active culture.” This active culture helps the natural bacteria in your digestive system do their job, and the calcium in the dairy products helps increase colon health.
- Exercise (at least a brisk walk for 30 minutes five times a week). Interestingly enough, when we move our muscles, it helps our colon move waste products as well.
- Lose weight, as needed.
- Drink lots of water.
- Don’t use tobacco of any type.
Maintaining good colon health is easy, and important, because not only can it help you avoid preventable colon issues, but the things that are good for your colon are also good for your heart, brain, kidneys, liver, skin, hair, and overall well-being. Keeping your colon healthy is really a one-size-fits-all recommendation for almost all bodily functions – even those that aren’t as awkward to talk about.
When to Contact a Medical Professional
Call 911 or the local emergency number or go to an emergency room if you:
- Think the nausea is from poisoning
- Notice blood or dark, coffee-colored material in the vomit
Call a provider right away or seek medical care if you or another person has:
- Been vomiting for longer than 24 hours
- Been unable to keep any fluids down for 12 hours or more
- Headache or stiff neck
- Not urinated for 8 or more hours
- Severe stomach or belly pain
- Vomited 3 or more times in 1 day
Signs of dehydration include:
- Crying without tears
- Dry mouth
- Increased thirst
- Eyes that appear sunken
- Skin changes: For example, if you touch or squeeze the skin, it doesn’t bounce back the way it usually does
- Urinating less often or having dark yellow urine