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Why Does Caffeine Make You Poop

Why Does It Feel So Good When I Poop

Why Does Coffee Make You Poop?

According to the authors, this feeling, which they call poo-phoria, occurs when your bowel movement stimulates the vagus nerve, which runs from your brainstem to your colon. Your vagus nerve is involved in key bodily functions, including digestion and regulating your heart rate and blood pressure.

Here’s Why Coffee Might Make You Poop

For many, nothing says “good morning” better than a good cup of coffee. Whether you most enjoy its alluring aroma, its complex flavor, or its caffeine jolt to your bloodstream , few beverages boast such a devoted following. Nor do most beverages spawn such a breadth of discussion regarding their potential side effects.

The most obvious trait that coffee possesses is its ability to awaken its consumer. According to Science Alert, caffeine is the world’s most popular “psychoactive substance” and coffee contains a sizeable dose. Caffeine keeps one’s neurons active, which in turn, creates a “fight or flight” response. For some people, coffee can make them feel jittery. Dr. Alexea Gaffney-Adams tells Bustle that caffeine can cause muscle spasms, twitching, and anxiety. Does drinking coffee make you need to use the bathroom more often? If it does, you’re not alone.

The Continence Program at St. Joseph’s Healthcare explains that this increased need to urinate is created by the fact that caffeine doubles as a diuretic and possibly makes the bladder contract by irritating its tissues. But that’s not the only bathroom-related association, that this drink boasts. Many coffee drinkers say that coffee enhances their ability to poop.

Why Does Coffee Make Me Poop Right Way

Scientists are still trying to pinpoint the reason this happens in certain individuals. Coffee itself comprises 1,000 different compounds, making it hard to understand the exact nature of this experience. When you consume coffee, it tends to increase the acidic activity of the stomach, which can lead to the stomach dumping its contents faster than normal. It has also been proven that coffee has the effect of activating the large intestine the same as when you consume a large meal.

So while the precise reason some individuals experience this laxative effect when consuming coffee is not yet certain, these are a few reasons why this happens as a byproduct of enjoying your cup of joe.

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Why Does Coffee Make You Poop Five Reasons Behind It

Most health professionals find coffee a good solution to facilitating bowel movements. It activates the production of essential hormones that trigger a bowel movement.

So, if you find it difficult to poop, taking a cup of coffee gives your body the relief you have waited for. So, take that cup of coffee instead of whining in pain due to constipation after a delayed bowel movement.

Coffee As A Hormone Stimulator

Why Does Caffeine Make You Poop

Like most energy drinks, coffee brings on board the hormone stimulators that promote different body functions like the movement of waste in the colon.

Coffee also gets identified to trigger either a nervous system reaction leading to hypersensitivity or activity. All these body functions get traced back to coffee’s laxative effect and hormonal stimulation.

The hormones stimulated by coffee include the hormones gastrin and cholecystokinin. These essential gastric acids help make the poop soft.

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You Drink Coffee In The Morning

Older research suggests that coffees stimulating effect on the bowels seems to be strongest in the morning. This may be because when you sleep, your body’s process of emptying the stomach is slower compared to when you’re awake. Colon contractions are also decreased when youre sleeping.

After you wake up and get moving, your colon does, too. Drinking coffee in the morning further stimulates the digestive system, which can make the urge to poop stronger.

Is Pooping After Coffee Ok

Pooping after coffee can be good or bad, depending on your body and your circumstances. There are times when a post-java bowel movement can be positive, and other times when its not good or even dangerous.

Pooping after drinking coffee is good when:

  • You need help maintaining regularity: Drinking coffee can help you make sure youre making a bowel movement every day.
  • You need to go before a big event: Coffee can help you make sure you go before running that marathon, preventing any pit stops.

Thankfully, pooping after coffee can often be a good thing. However, there are some situations where a coffee-induced bathroom break is not ideal.

Coffee making you poop is not ideal when:

  • You have serious digestive disorders like IBS that already affect your bowel movements
  • Youre expecting coffee to help you poop, but your body doesnt react well to coffee

If you begin to depend on coffee to make you poop, that can be unhealthy. At this point, you may want to include more fiber and hydration in your diet.

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It Might Affect Hormones And Stomach Acid

Coffee appears to also stimulate release of the hormone gastrin, Staller said, which enables production of gastric acid . Gastric acid helps digest food and might urge colonic activity. Researchers discovered in 1986 that drinking caffeinated or decaf coffee affected gastrin levels quickly and significantly.

How Much Coffee Does It Take To Make You Poop

Why Does Coffee Make You Poop?

Not everyone who drinks coffee will experience the same effects.

And for those who do find coffee to be an effective colonic stimulant, the amount of coffee needed to cause a bowel movement will vary from person to person.

Factors that can impact the effect of coffee include a persons general health, tolerance to caffeine, and the type of coffee they drink.

According to the Food and Drug Administration , up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day is a safe and healthy guideline for most adults.

It is, however, important to note that the overconsumption of caffeine can cause unwanted side effects, including:

Keep in mind that processed caffeinated foods and beverages can have varying amounts of caffeine.

To ensure youre consuming a safe amount of caffeine, check the nutrition facts before consumption.

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The Reason Coffee Makes You Poop

There are several theories around why does Coffee make me poop? Perhaps the most likely reason is Caffeine in Coffee, a stimulating chemical compound that most of us know and love first thing in the morning.

It is best known for providing an energy boost by blocking adenosine, a neurotransmitter that relaxes the brain while making you feel tired. Doing so has the opposite effect.

Yet, that isnt all it can seemingly do. A significant portion of the scientific community believes that it likewise induces bile production and increases bowel movement. That said, some studies have proven to be contradictory.

Another theory is that the simple act of consuming Coffee stimulates defecation via the gastrocolic reflex. This effectively jumpstarts your bowels whenever you eat or drink.

The third and final theory well be talking about here derives from an admittedly outdated 1990 study. The research in question found that Coffee increases rectosigmoid motility, referring to the movement at the intersection of the large colons end and the upper rectum.

It concluded that Coffee, regular or decaf, alongside a 1,000-calorie meal stimulated the colon. The bottom line is that, well, we dont 100% know.

How Does Coffee Impact Hormonal Fluctuations In Your Body

When you drink coffee, it stimulates your body to the hormones gastrin and cholecystokinin .

Gastrin is a hormone that signals the release of stomach acid. CCK is a hormone that triggers the gallbladder to contract and release bile.

In turn, bile helps break down fat in the small intestine, and its release into the intestines can trigger bowel movement.

So why does this happen?

The answer has to do with how our bodies digest food.

When we eat food, it takes a long time for it to travel from our mouths all the way down to our colons. During this time, your body is constantly releasing hormones like gastrin and CCK to help with digestion.

Coffee speeds up this process by triggering the release of these hormones!

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Can Caffeine Cause Constipation

Surprisingly, yes. Caffeine can sometimes help with constipation, but in other cases, coffee can actually cause constipation. The same goes for energy drinks, caffeine pills and other substances with caffeine.

Here’s why: Because caffeine is a diuretic, it can have dehydrating effects, meaning that it makes you pee out a lot of fluid, which then doesn’t go to your colon where it would soften your stool. The dry, hardened stools that result from dehydration can cause constipation. Because of their stiffness, your colon struggles to move them along and excrete them from your body. In this manner, caffeine can either cause constipation or worsen existing conditions.

You can typically avoid this side effect by making sure you stay well hydrated. That means drinking at least eight cups of water a day and eating water-rich foods like fruits and veggies.

Can You Use Coffee To Relieve Constipation

Laxative Effects of Coffee

If sipping on a piping hot mug of java each day helps keep you regular, it’s okay to keep doing so, says Dr. Schnoll-Sussman. “For those who enjoy their cup of coffee in the morning, and it definitely helps them then make that trip to the loo, they should continue to enjoy that,” she adds.

That said, coffee should not be your go-to remedy for chronic constipation, says Dr. Schnoll-Sussman. “If you are someone that has a new change in bowel habits, new constipation that you’ve never had before, belly pain, any kind of weight loss, blood in the stool things that seem different to you then you should not be just turning to coffee to fix to it,” she explains. “You should be seen by a physician to make sure there’s nothing else that’s going on.” Blockages in the colon or rectum, pelvic muscle dysfunction, and hormonal conditions such as diabetes, hyperparathyroidism, and hypothyroidism can all lead to chronic constipation, according to the Mayo Clinic, and chugging a cup of coffee isn’t going to treat these root causes.

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Coffee Beans Contain Dietary Fiber

Jerlyn Jones, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, told CNN that compounds called melanoidins, which are produced when coffee is roasted, are high in fiber and substantially aid in the prevention of constipation. Seriously, coffee beans possess fiber. Who knew? Well, apparently the scientists who conducted research for the National Research Council in Madrid did, and their studies support it . This study provided evidence that brewed java has the same soluble fibers found in “oatmeal and apples.” That’s pretty cool, but it doesn’t mean you should give up fruit and whole grains.

Another important consideration to consider is whether or not people are drinking their coffee black and unsweetened. Health points out that adding milk or cream can trigger a colon clean-out due to lactose intolerance in some instances. The site also says that some artificial sweeteners that people add to their cups of joe can have scary side effects like diarrhea. These factors can also alter the impact coffee has on your digestive system. No matter which of these factors are at play, one fact remains. Who needs prune juice or Milk of Magnesia when you’ve got coffee?

Health Conditions And Hormones

Many studies have been conducted on the effects of coffee. Here are some things scientists have been able to tease out about how drinking coffee affects your gastrointestinal tract.

Within minutes of consumption, your body releases hormones that act throughout the digestive system, including the stomach and small intestine. Coffee makes you poop during the day because it affects your digestive system so quickly.

When you drink a cup of coffee, it stimulates your body to release the hormones gastrin and cholecystokinin. Both gastrin and cholecystokinin trigger the gastrocolic reflex, which stimulates your body to make a bowel movement.

These hormones also increase the motility of the colon and rectum. Because coffee activates your gut in a similar way, it also gives you the urge to eliminate as you would after eating a big dinner.

Some health conditions can cause the bowels to empty more frequently, like irritable bowel syndrome . Patients may think they suddenly need to go because they just drank a few cups of coffee, when really theyre experiencing the symptoms of IBS.

What does coffee do to your intestines? Coffee increases the motility of your intestines, which can make you need to poop. Coffee has a moderate effect on the small intestine, but really gets the colon and rectum moving.

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Can Adding Milk Or Creamer Have An Impact On Your Bowels

Adding milk or creamer to your coffee wont have much of an impact on whether you poop or not. unless your lactose intolerant!

The caffeine and other compounds in coffee still work the same way, no matter what you add to it. However, adding dairy products can increase the likelihood of getting diarrhea .

So if youre looking for a little relief from constipation, drink your coffee black.

How Does It Work

Why Does Coffee Make You Poop?

Researchers believe that the bowel-stimulating quality of coffee comes from caffeine and/or other substances contained within the coffee brew. Although there have been no large-scale studies on this subject, what we do know is that drinking coffee can stimulate movement of the colonic muscles, thus promoting peristalsis . One study noted that the magnitude of this peristaltic effect of caffeinated coffee is similar to one induced by eating a meal. Its also 60 percent stronger than the effect induced by drinking water, and 23 percent stronger than the effect due to drinking decaffeinated coffee.

Aside from promoting bowel movements, coffee can also cause looser stools because increased peristalsis leaves less time for the colon to perform one of its key functionsreabsorbing water from fecal matter to produce well-formed stools. Be aware, however, that other common accompaniments to coffee can be culprits in this matter. Dairy products, excess sugar, even sugarless sweeteners like sorbitol can cause diarrhea.

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Does Caffeine In The Coffee Make You Go Poop Hmmm

Caffeine is a stimulant that speeds up your heart rate, makes you more alert, and can give you that awesome burst of energy. It accomplishes this by blocking the effects of adenosine, which is a chemical in your body that makes you sleepy.

Adenosine normally binds to receptors on nerve cells in your brainstem. When it does, this reduces the activity of those cells and makes you drowsy.

Caffeine blocks adenosine from binding to its receptors, which, in turn, stops it from making you sleepy. This is why drinking coffee or other drinks that contain caffeine can help keep you stay awake .

Ok, so caffeine blocks adenosine and keeps you from getting drowsy. But why does this make you poop?

The next part of the answer has to do with how coffee affects your digestive system.

Coffee Affects Your Gut Hormones

Coffee stimulates the increase in production of several hormones such as gastrin and cholecystokinin which are involved in a response called the gastrocolic reflex, which stimulates contractions in your gut and moves poop toward your rectum for removal. This means that coffee may stimulate movement in your gut, which increases the urge to poop.

Even though its clear that coffee influences certain gut hormones, more research is needed to fully understand how compounds in coffee impact the digestive process.

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Coffee Gets Things Started With A Stomach Contraction

If your bowel movements seem to occur more readily after a cup of Joe, you are not alone. In fact, you and your colon can consider this perfectly normal. Many people around the world who drink coffee may experience the exact same thing. In a 1990 study published by the journal Gut, researchers found that consuming coffee “can stimulate a motor response of the distal colon in some normal people” . A 1998 clinical trial published in the European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology suggested that caffeinated coffee’s ability to get that colon moving was 60% more powerful than that of water. While your normalcy has been scientifically backed , this raises another question. Why does coffee make you poop?

While gastroenterologist Dr. Sameer Islam, author of the “Ask the Poop Doctor” column, tells Men’s Health that no one knows exactly why coffee creates bowel movements, it is known that coffee makes one’s stomach contract. This contraction spreads down through your intestines and into your colon, creating some serious bowel action. Dr. Kyle Staller, the director of the Gastrointestinal Motility Laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital, agrees, telling CNN that the colon goes through three contractions in order to release poop. It is believed that coffee can set these contractions in motion. While there may not be a definitive explanation for the contraction, there are some theories about what makes coffee an effective laxative for some.

Is It Healthy To Drink Coffee As A Laxative

This Is Why Coffee Makes You Poop

If it works for you, it may be healthy to drink coffee as a laxative, says Deutsch. Consuming up to 400 milligrams of caffeine daily is safe without adverse effects, which is roughly the amount in four cups of coffee. However, sustained consumption of higher doses may lead to caffeine dependence.

What the research says: According to a 2013 study, caffeine is the most widely used drug in the world. It’s important to consume less than 400 milligrams of caffeine daily to avoid symptoms of caffeine dependence such as a strong desire to keep consuming the drug, difficulties in controlling your drug consumption, and withdrawal.

Other beverages contain caffeine as well, such as sodas, teas , and energy drinks. However, there’s no research proving that they provide a similar laxative effect to that of coffee. “We don’t have data to support that other caffeinated beverages stimulate a bowel movement,” says Deutsch.

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