Flashback Friday: How Many Bowel Movements Should You Have & Should You Sit, Lean, or Squat?

Flashback Friday: How Many Bowel Movements Should You Have & Should You Sit, Lean, or Squat?
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Most people have between 3 bowel movements a day and 3 a week, but normal doesn’t necessarily mean optimal. Squatting and leaning can help straighten the anorectal angle, but a healthy enough diet should make bowel movements effortless regardless of positioning.

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Ancient Egypt was one of the great civilizations, lasting for 3,000 years, its knowledge of medicine vastly underestimated. They had medical subspecialties. The pharaohs, for example, had access to physicians dedicated to be guardians of the royal bowel movement, a title alternately translated from the hieroglyphics to mean Shepherd of the Anus. How’s that for a resumé builder?

Today, the primacy of its importance continues, with some calling for bowel habits to be considered a vital sign of how the body is functioning, along with blood pressure, and heart and breathing rates. Although we may not particularly like hearing the details of someone else’s bowel movement, it is a function that nurses and doctors need to assess.

Surprisingly, the colon remained relatively unexplored territory, one of the body’s final frontiers. For example, current concepts of what “normal” stools are like primarily emanate from the detailed records of 12 consecutive bowel movements in 27 healthy subjects from the United Kingdom, who boldly went where no one had gone before. Those must have been really detailed records.

The reason we need to define normal, when it comes to bowel movement frequency, for example, is how else can we define concepts like constipation or diarrhea if we don’t know what normal is. Standard physiology textbooks may not be helpful in this regard, implying that anything from one bowel movement every few weeks or months to 24 a day can be regarded as normal. Once every few months?

Of all human bodily functions defecation is perhaps the least understood and least studied. Can’t you just ask people? Turns out people tend to exaggerate. There’s a discrepancy between what people report and what researchers find when they actually have them recorded. It wasn’t until 2010 when we got the first serious look, defining normal stool frequency as between three per week and three per day, based on the fact that that’s where 98% of people tended to fall. But normal doesn’t necessarily mean optimal.

Having a “normal” salt intake can lead to a “normal” blood pressure, which can help us die from all the “normal” causes, like heart attacks and strokes. Having a “normal” cholesterol level in a society where it’s “normal” to drop dead of heart disease—our #1 killer, is not necessarily a good thing. And indeed, significant proportions of people with “normal” bowel function reported urgency, straining, and incomplete defecation, leading the researchers to conclude that that kind of thing must just be normal.  Normal, maybe, if you’re eating a fiber-deficient diet. But not normal for our species. Defecation should not be a painful exercise. This is readily demonstrable. For example, the majority of rural Africans eating their traditional fiber-rich, plant-based diets can usually pass, without straining, a stool specimen on demand. See, the rectum may need to accumulate four or five ounces of fecal matter before the defecation reflex is fully initiated, and so if you don’t even build up that much over the day, you’d have to strain to prime the rectal pump.

Hippocrates thought bowel movements should ideally be two or three times a day, which is what you see in populations on traditional plant-based diets, on the kind of fiber intakes you see in our fellow great apes, and what may be more representative of the type of diets we evolved eating. It seems somewhat optimistic, though, to expect the average American to adopt a rural African diet. We can, however, eat more plant-based and bulk up enough to take the Hippocratic oath to go two to three times a day.

No need to obsess about it. In fact, there’s actually a “bowel obsession syndrome,” characterized in part by ideational rambling over bowel habits, but three times a day makes sense. We have what’s called a gastrocolic reflex, which consists of a prompt activation of muscular waves in our colon within 1 to 3 minutes of the ingestion of the first mouthfuls of food. Even just talking about food can cause your brain to increase colon activity. This suggests the body figured that one meal should be just about enough to fill you up down there. So, maybe we should eat enough unprocessed plant foods to get up to three a day, a movement for every meal.

Compared to rural African populations eating traditional plant-based diets, white South Africans and black and white Americans not only have more than 50 times the heart disease, 10 times more colon cancer, and more than 50 times more gallstones and appendicitis, but also more than 25 times the rates of so-called pressure diseases—diverticulitis, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, and hiatal hernia.

Bowel movements should be effortless. When they’re not, when we have to strain at stool, the pressure may balloon out-pouchings from our colon, causing diverticulosis, inflate hemorrhoids around the anus, cause the valves in the veins of our legs to fail, causing varicose veins, and even force part of the stomach up through the diaphragm into our chest cavity, causing a hiatal hernia, as I covered previously. When this was first proposed by Dr. Burkitt, he blamed these conditions on the straining caused by a lack of fiber in the diet, but did acknowledge there were alternative explanations. For example, in rural Africa they used a traditional squatting position when they defecated, which may have taken off some of the pressure.

For hundreds of thousands of years, everyone used the squatting position, which may help by straightening the “anorectal angle.” There’s actually a kink right at the end of the rectum, almost a 90-degree angle that helps keep us from pooping our pants when we’re just walking around, but that angle only slightly straightens out in a common sitting posture on the toilet. Maximal straightening out of this angle occurs in a squatting posture, potentially permitting smoother bowel elimination. (I remember sitting in geometry class thinking, “When am I ever going to use this?”; little did I know I would one day be calculating anorectal angles with it—stay in school, kids.)

So how did they figure this out? They filled latex tubes with a radiopaque fluid, stuck them up some volunteers, took X-rays with their hips flexed at various angles, and concluded that flexing the knees towards the chest, like one does squatting, may straighten that angle and reduce the amount of pressure required to achieve emptying of the rectum. But it wasn’t put to the test until 2002, when researchers used defecography, which are X-rays taken while the person is defecating, in sitting and squatting positions.  And indeed, squatting increased the anorectal angle from around 90 degrees all the way up to about 140.

So, should we all get one of those little stools for our stools, like the squatty potty that you put in front of your toilet to step on? No, they don’t seem to work. The researchers tried adding a footstool to decrease sitting height, but it didn’t seem to significantly affect the time it took to empty one’s bowels or significantly decrease the difficulty of defecating. They tried even higher footstools, but people complained of extreme discomfort using them. So, nothing seemed to compare with actual squatting, which may give the maximum advantage, but, in “civilized” countries, it may not be convenient. But, a similar effect can be achieved if you lean forward as you sit, with your hands on or near the floor. They advise all sufferers from constipation to adopt this forward-leaning position when defecating, as the weight of your torso pressing against the thighs may put an extra squeeze on your colon.

But instead of finding ways to add even more pressure, why not get to the root of the problem? The fundamental cause of straining is the effort required to pass unnaturally firm stools. By manipulating the anorectal angle through squatting or leaning you can more easily pass unnaturally firm stools; but why not just treat the cause? And eat enough fiber-containing whole plant foods to create stools so large and so soft that you could pass them effortlessly at any angle. Cardiologist Dr. Joel Kahn once said you know you know you’re eating a plant based diet when “you take longer to pee than to poop.”

But seriously, even squatting does not significantly decrease the pressure gradient that may cause hiatal hernia. It does not prevent that pressure transmission down into the legs that may cause varicose veins. And this is not just a cosmetic issue. Protracted straining can cause heart rhythm disturbances, reduction in blood flow to the heart and brain, sometimes resulting in defecation-related fainting and death. 15 seconds of straining can temporarily cut blood flow to the brain by 21%, cut blood flow to the heart nearly in half, thereby providing a mechanism for the well-known bedpan death syndrome. You think you have to strain sitting; try having a bowel movement on your back. Bearing down for just a few seconds can send your blood pressure up to nearly 170 over 110, which may help account for the notorious frequency of sudden and unexpected deaths of patients while using bedpans in hospitals. Of course, hopefully, if we eat healthy enough, we won’t end up in the hospital to begin with.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to vinitdeekhanu via Adobe Stock.

Ancient Egypt was one of the great civilizations, lasting for 3,000 years, its knowledge of medicine vastly underestimated. They had medical subspecialties. The pharaohs, for example, had access to physicians dedicated to be guardians of the royal bowel movement, a title alternately translated from the hieroglyphics to mean Shepherd of the Anus. How’s that for a resumé builder?

Today, the primacy of its importance continues, with some calling for bowel habits to be considered a vital sign of how the body is functioning, along with blood pressure, and heart and breathing rates. Although we may not particularly like hearing the details of someone else’s bowel movement, it is a function that nurses and doctors need to assess.

Surprisingly, the colon remained relatively unexplored territory, one of the body’s final frontiers. For example, current concepts of what “normal” stools are like primarily emanate from the detailed records of 12 consecutive bowel movements in 27 healthy subjects from the United Kingdom, who boldly went where no one had gone before. Those must have been really detailed records.

The reason we need to define normal, when it comes to bowel movement frequency, for example, is how else can we define concepts like constipation or diarrhea if we don’t know what normal is. Standard physiology textbooks may not be helpful in this regard, implying that anything from one bowel movement every few weeks or months to 24 a day can be regarded as normal. Once every few months?

Of all human bodily functions defecation is perhaps the least understood and least studied. Can’t you just ask people? Turns out people tend to exaggerate. There’s a discrepancy between what people report and what researchers find when they actually have them recorded. It wasn’t until 2010 when we got the first serious look, defining normal stool frequency as between three per week and three per day, based on the fact that that’s where 98% of people tended to fall. But normal doesn’t necessarily mean optimal.

Having a “normal” salt intake can lead to a “normal” blood pressure, which can help us die from all the “normal” causes, like heart attacks and strokes. Having a “normal” cholesterol level in a society where it’s “normal” to drop dead of heart disease—our #1 killer, is not necessarily a good thing. And indeed, significant proportions of people with “normal” bowel function reported urgency, straining, and incomplete defecation, leading the researchers to conclude that that kind of thing must just be normal.  Normal, maybe, if you’re eating a fiber-deficient diet. But not normal for our species. Defecation should not be a painful exercise. This is readily demonstrable. For example, the majority of rural Africans eating their traditional fiber-rich, plant-based diets can usually pass, without straining, a stool specimen on demand. See, the rectum may need to accumulate four or five ounces of fecal matter before the defecation reflex is fully initiated, and so if you don’t even build up that much over the day, you’d have to strain to prime the rectal pump.

Hippocrates thought bowel movements should ideally be two or three times a day, which is what you see in populations on traditional plant-based diets, on the kind of fiber intakes you see in our fellow great apes, and what may be more representative of the type of diets we evolved eating. It seems somewhat optimistic, though, to expect the average American to adopt a rural African diet. We can, however, eat more plant-based and bulk up enough to take the Hippocratic oath to go two to three times a day.

No need to obsess about it. In fact, there’s actually a “bowel obsession syndrome,” characterized in part by ideational rambling over bowel habits, but three times a day makes sense. We have what’s called a gastrocolic reflex, which consists of a prompt activation of muscular waves in our colon within 1 to 3 minutes of the ingestion of the first mouthfuls of food. Even just talking about food can cause your brain to increase colon activity. This suggests the body figured that one meal should be just about enough to fill you up down there. So, maybe we should eat enough unprocessed plant foods to get up to three a day, a movement for every meal.

Compared to rural African populations eating traditional plant-based diets, white South Africans and black and white Americans not only have more than 50 times the heart disease, 10 times more colon cancer, and more than 50 times more gallstones and appendicitis, but also more than 25 times the rates of so-called pressure diseases—diverticulitis, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, and hiatal hernia.

Bowel movements should be effortless. When they’re not, when we have to strain at stool, the pressure may balloon out-pouchings from our colon, causing diverticulosis, inflate hemorrhoids around the anus, cause the valves in the veins of our legs to fail, causing varicose veins, and even force part of the stomach up through the diaphragm into our chest cavity, causing a hiatal hernia, as I covered previously. When this was first proposed by Dr. Burkitt, he blamed these conditions on the straining caused by a lack of fiber in the diet, but did acknowledge there were alternative explanations. For example, in rural Africa they used a traditional squatting position when they defecated, which may have taken off some of the pressure.

For hundreds of thousands of years, everyone used the squatting position, which may help by straightening the “anorectal angle.” There’s actually a kink right at the end of the rectum, almost a 90-degree angle that helps keep us from pooping our pants when we’re just walking around, but that angle only slightly straightens out in a common sitting posture on the toilet. Maximal straightening out of this angle occurs in a squatting posture, potentially permitting smoother bowel elimination. (I remember sitting in geometry class thinking, “When am I ever going to use this?”; little did I know I would one day be calculating anorectal angles with it—stay in school, kids.)

So how did they figure this out? They filled latex tubes with a radiopaque fluid, stuck them up some volunteers, took X-rays with their hips flexed at various angles, and concluded that flexing the knees towards the chest, like one does squatting, may straighten that angle and reduce the amount of pressure required to achieve emptying of the rectum. But it wasn’t put to the test until 2002, when researchers used defecography, which are X-rays taken while the person is defecating, in sitting and squatting positions.  And indeed, squatting increased the anorectal angle from around 90 degrees all the way up to about 140.

So, should we all get one of those little stools for our stools, like the squatty potty that you put in front of your toilet to step on? No, they don’t seem to work. The researchers tried adding a footstool to decrease sitting height, but it didn’t seem to significantly affect the time it took to empty one’s bowels or significantly decrease the difficulty of defecating. They tried even higher footstools, but people complained of extreme discomfort using them. So, nothing seemed to compare with actual squatting, which may give the maximum advantage, but, in “civilized” countries, it may not be convenient. But, a similar effect can be achieved if you lean forward as you sit, with your hands on or near the floor. They advise all sufferers from constipation to adopt this forward-leaning position when defecating, as the weight of your torso pressing against the thighs may put an extra squeeze on your colon.

But instead of finding ways to add even more pressure, why not get to the root of the problem? The fundamental cause of straining is the effort required to pass unnaturally firm stools. By manipulating the anorectal angle through squatting or leaning you can more easily pass unnaturally firm stools; but why not just treat the cause? And eat enough fiber-containing whole plant foods to create stools so large and so soft that you could pass them effortlessly at any angle. Cardiologist Dr. Joel Kahn once said you know you know you’re eating a plant based diet when “you take longer to pee than to poop.”

But seriously, even squatting does not significantly decrease the pressure gradient that may cause hiatal hernia. It does not prevent that pressure transmission down into the legs that may cause varicose veins. And this is not just a cosmetic issue. Protracted straining can cause heart rhythm disturbances, reduction in blood flow to the heart and brain, sometimes resulting in defecation-related fainting and death. 15 seconds of straining can temporarily cut blood flow to the brain by 21%, cut blood flow to the heart nearly in half, thereby providing a mechanism for the well-known bedpan death syndrome. You think you have to strain sitting; try having a bowel movement on your back. Bearing down for just a few seconds can send your blood pressure up to nearly 170 over 110, which may help account for the notorious frequency of sudden and unexpected deaths of patients while using bedpans in hospitals. Of course, hopefully, if we eat healthy enough, we won’t end up in the hospital to begin with.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to vinitdeekhanu via Adobe Stock.

Doctor's Note

I know people are suckers for poop videos! In Diet and Hiatal Hernia I talk about the consequences of straining on stool. Hernias are better than Bedpan Death Syndrome, though, like I talked about in the 2nd half of this video.  Then there’s diverticulosis (the “ballooning of out-pouchings from your colon”), which I covered in:

I do have some other older videos on bowel health:

For more on this concept of having “normal” health parameters in a society where it’s normal to drop dead of heart attacks and other such preventable fates, see my video When Low Risk Means High Risk.

More on that extraordinary African data here:

So excited to be able to slip in a plug for Dr. Kahn’s work. His brand of “interpreventional cardiology” can be found at http://www.drjoelkahn.com.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

These videos originally aired on July 3rd 2015 and July 6th 2015.

155 responses to “Flashback Friday: How Many Bowel Movements Should You Have & Should You Sit, Lean, or Squat?

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              1. Pooetry

                My moment is nearing
                A time of disposing
                Farts I will be hearing
                On my way to reposing
                Oh such a steady, even rush
                Eased by WFPB
                No pressure, no blush
                My excess now erased

                  1. Looks like they all had a good time. Good music.

                    Speaking of shit, or were we: https://thestir.cafemom.com/home_garden/162207/5_horrific_things_you_really

                    Nowadays with the nasty bug, there are probably ways of (attempting to) keep out the naughty stuff. But I haven’t gone to a public laundromat in many years, so don’;t even know what they look like. I wash everything, including sheets and towels, by hand. Have devised a good way to do this and save some bucks besides.

    1. BAD FART RISING (SUNG TO BAD MOON RISING by John Fogerty)

      I smell a bad fart a-rising I smell trouble on the way I see diabetes and Colitis I see their victims every day.

      Don’t go drinking milk Milk’s bound to take your life, Constipation’s on the rise There’s a bathroom on the right.

      I hear plugged toilets over flowin’ I hope the plunger turns up soon I know you’re sittin’ on the toilet I hear the voice of strain and doin’!

      Don’t give up tonight, Milk’s bound to take your life Constipation’s on the rise!
      There’s a bathroom on the right.

      I hope your farts don’t change the weather So that we will not have to hide Look’s like you’re looking for the flax oil One spoonful is taken every night.

      Oh don’t conk out tonight though Milk’s bound to take your life, Get the milk out of your life!
      There’s a bathroom on the right!

          1. DG,
            Fun to watch and listen to. There is no new music. Kids and everyone else are listening to the music from 40 years ago.

  1. Oh goodie…a thread about SHIT. John N. will be drawn to this one for sure.

    I think I posted this before: My brother died last August. A short while later, while I was a-sittin’ on the pot, a long-lasting light bulb above the bathroom sink started blinking on and off, on and off…. Am sure he was just saying hi. It was definitely the sort of thing – and where – he would do it. I thought I’d have to let the office know I needed a new bulb, but it never happened again.

    The last time somebody told me to “Have a good one,” I said “A good what? A good bowel movement?”

    1. Yes YR. I’ve been writing this stuff for 40 years. Dr. Geger is the first Doctor to catch up with what I’ve been saying all these years. The reason why I didn’t publish all those years ago is because I didn’t know how to do the index. I tried to hire someone to do it for me a few years ago (2012) but they wanted $3,500.00 to do it. So the book, then titled “A PORTRAIT OF A GOOD SHIT” got worked over some more. When the proof edition was finally done it was over 500 pages long and also had a number of medical crimes explored in it. After a few people read it, the consensus was that the medical people loved it and the non-medical people were overwhelmed.

      So I shortened it by removing the crimes and it was retitled: A PORTRAIT OF A REALLY, REALLY GOOD SHIT. That was the book I decided to add the Cure For the Common Cold into in a more organized format than it had been previously. That was in 2015. But it was still too long. My publicist told me flat out the US market, hypocritical entity that it is, would not allow me to go on TV with the word SHIT in the title. No amount of Trump shit bombs would make him budge. So I refined it again and retitled it to PITCHIN’ A LOAF AN’ MAKIN’ IT WORK and rewrote most of it and updated it where needed. I even wrote three songs to go with it so people could party on the potty.

      I stopped again because of the index problem. It was still over 300 pages of teaching people how to take a dump.

      I decided to write a short booklet and put it on Amazon just to get a walk through the process. Hopefully, the book would be short enough that I could manually get through the index without going blind. So I decided to write about the Bovine Leukemia Virus. When I found out about all the corruption involved, I started contacting Health Canada officials as well as Dr. Buerhing (whose name I spell wrong on purpose to see if anyone is awake). She is the doctor who linked BLV to Breast Cancer. Lots more corruption in that direction. That was back in November 2019. Seeing as that book was growing fast, I decided to go back to the Cure for the Common Cold. That book started growing too.

      By December 31st, I knew I had to change gears and start looking at the latest virus that was causing ripples in China – Covid-19. The early symptoms discussed sounded so similar to the flu I had in January 2016, that it could not be overlooked. That’s why I had the book mostly written before mid March. Since that book looked like a winner, I hooked up with a print on demand outfit and they taught me how to do the index. Even so, it’s over 200 pages long.

      Since mid March that book has been back and forth for editing corrections. I still managed to get one important letter wrong. I put DNA instead of RNA. A potentially fatal flaw that might get me creamed by critics. But I didn’t find it until after the cut off date. I had to do all of the proof reading myself in the end so that was hard. To change R to D would have meant a 20 delay. Thousands more people would die over the letter D. So I decided I’d rather take a shit kicking by critics rather than have people die due to a typo. Besides that, I can make a running change later if it becomes necessary. I’ll do that if I need to update the book with other stuff as the situation develops.

      Anyway having gotten through all of that I’m ready to get the poop books sorted out and published. I’d say Dr. Greger’s video is a great ego boost and it shows me clearly where even the most advanced thinking is right now and that tells you how far out of touch the rest are.

      Dr. Greger is the first MD to come right out and say what I’ve been saying for years about regularity and how many times a day is optimum. You’ll notice he did not use the word natural. At the moment, it’s almost impossible for a non-aboriginal person to behave naturally where bowel movements are concerned.

      What he doesn’t really make clear though he comes close, is posture where defecation is concerned. When you are constipated (once a day or less usually) posture is extremely important. He said that, but what he left out was the impact that dairy and grain have on regularity and that 90º angle. I know no one here wants to admit it, but grain is a huge negative issue where healthy bowel movements are concerned and fibre content is not the entire conversation. You don’t believe me now but sooner or later Dr. Greger will have to address it because our plumbing does not and cannot work naturally with excessive grain in it. Excessive can be anything short of zero. Hominids spent too many centuries developing their intestinal tracts in the absence of grain to suddenly re-wire and re-construct our colonic structures including tolerances to fully adapt to grilled cheese sandwiches many centuries later. If rats and mice couldn’t do it without having to eat their own feces, then there is no way anyone is going to convince me that we can do it with impunity with fewer structural components to do it with. You cannot do more digestion tasks with substantially less digestion equipment.

      Speaking of mice and rats, they don’t do any better than we do on a diet that includes the regular consumption of dairy products.

      1. It’s always good to have a project or two on your mind….keeps the mind chugging away, helps prevent dementia. What better subject that one we all have in common. “Garbage in, garbage out.”

        Did anybody ever wonder: If there could be a mountain consisting of all the SHIT of one 90-year old over a lifetime, how tall would it be?

        1. YR,
          I love these science questions. The answer is there would be no mountain of shit left behind by a 90 year old if the bacterial microbiome is working properly.

          Here is one of my questions: What is the meaning of life? Answer: To have gratifying shits.

          1. Dan, I didn’t mean literally, as in a linear world. Like every thing else, it (energy) never dies, it merely changes form But in a world where everything exists at once (parallel worlds or whatever) how high would the mountain be?

            (And who’d wanna be near the stenchy thing!)

      2. John

        You wrote: ‘Hominids spent too many centuries developing their intestinal tracts in the absence of grain’

        This is a claim constantly made by paleo diet advocates. And you. However, as you know, it is just an article of faith. it is very far from being a known fact.

        There is in fact some reason to thinkj that grasses and grass seeds were an important part of our diet long before meat was.
        https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130603163749.htm

        We have good evidence that humans have been eating grains for at least 100,000 + years and, as the sciencedaily report above shows, there is circumstantial evidence that our ancestors may have been eating them for millions of years. Long-standing dietary consumption of grains would also potentially be one reason (starchy roots and tubers may be another) why humans have evolved more copies of the genes to digest starch than our fellow apes possess.
        https://www.researchgate.net/publication/40696649_Mozambican_Grass_Seed_Consumption_During_the_Middle_Stone_Age
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2377015/

        1. It’s true that eastern cultures have likely been eating grains for hundreds of thousands of years. The grain eaten back then was sorghum which is gluten free – as in no glue content. Glue is the big deal where grain is concerned. That glue combined with fermentation and constipation is the chemical process that humans have trouble with. That trouble does not seem to go back further than 15,000 years.

          The other grains commonly found in ancient cooking sites and in caves before wheat and rice cultivation are gluten free too. It’s the gluten/glue that is the big deal.

          Even so, grains are all simple sugars. When you are in health restoration mode, the last thing you need is a diet of simple sugars which translate into sugar spikes. That gives a yoyo sugar release effect instead of a steady, even, metabolically predictable flow of sugar to the tissues. Sugar is fuel. Think of it as gasoline. Have you ever ridden in a car where the driver constantly raises and lowers his foot on the gas pedal? If that is done too often you get an upset stomach. At the cellular level, uneven sugar delivery has the same effect. That makes recovery much more of a challenge and extends the recovery period.

          Simple sugars are immediate energy sources. When consumed, the body has to dilute it. That process causes water deficiencies in our extremities, eyes, toes and baby fingers. While trying to restore your health, you don’t want sugar spikes impacting your hydration. Even if the impact is too low to notice, it’s there. Constipation is often a result of uneven hydration.

          No matter what kind of grain we ingest, grain goes in dry and causes a hydration imbalance that has to be met with extra water consumption. If not constipation results. Whole grains, regardless of species do cause constipation if there is insufficient water intake during consumption. Most people drink after consumption. When you do that, the necessary water frequently does not catch up to the grain bolus and hydrate it enough to keep the stool from becoming hard and difficult to pass.

          Add the fermentation factor to all of that and you have cumulative health degeneration that we categorize as different diseases instead of identifying the original causative factors which are food choices.

          1. John, whole grains are not all sugar as you write. I have never seen anyone with so little knowledge wtite so profusely, and never post a single source for the outrageous claims you make. Cite sources please when making claims.

            Grains are an extremely healthy addition to our diet which is why Dr Greger includes 3 servings in his Daily Dozen. Read up about them here, too.

            https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/simple-carbohydrates-complex-carbohydrates#carbs-to-eat-more-of

            1. I’ve never come across such a learned body of people who know to the very last person that our ancestors did not become homanids eating grain. They did not start as a species with that knowledge.

              Given that and the millions of years it took for our digestive tracts to evolve without grain along with every other animal except rodents who have to consume their own shit to metabolize it, what makes it so hard for even one of you to go for a few days without consuming grain?

              I’ll tell you what makes it so hard. Addiction.
              I know that because I’m addicted to grain myself. It’s a brutal addiction to break.

              Fortunately, we don’t have to do it for life, only long enough to restore our health to the level we desire. The reality of course, is that if you manage to break the addiction, your health and quality of life is amazing.

              You don’t have to wonder if it will happen, it’s automatic. Yet you all sit here and gripe about your various ill health conditions that are mostly fixable if you cut out all forms of processed foods. You learn nothing. It’s pretty clear Dr. Greger hasn’t learned much either or he would be telling the same thing.

              What will happen will be that someone will pass my ideas along, he’ll do as I’ve suggested, then I will have someone to cite.

              I don’t need to cite what I’m saying because if you get grain, dairy, sugar and domestic meat out of your diet, your health improves automatically. Your body knows how to be perfectly healthy if you feed it properly and let it do what it knows how to do better than our decision-making conscious minds do.

              I see the lot of you as cowards afraid to try new things. Eating what you evolved to eat carries no risk.

              Yesterday I had a mostly green salad:

              Thistle leaves,

              Plantain leaves

              Dandelion leaves

              Blueberries

              zucchini

              Hemp hearts

              I had broth today with the same stuff and moose meat added.

              Tomorrow, shepherd’s pie with moose meat, more plantain and dandelions with sweet potatoes. Cherries for desert. Other stuff too of course, that’s just what I can think of as I type this. Oh yeah, lemon balm.

              Does that sound like I’m going to drop dead of starvation or malnutrition?

              You can eat as much salad as you want and eat your own weeds. If fact, the weeds stop being weeds. Your mouth waters when you look at them. No more thistles for now since I only had one and they are invasive, so no more, same with nettles.

              In the case of thistles and plantains, you can eat the seeds. That’s your grains, lots of them by number but a smidgeon in terms of a measurable amount.

              Have you any idea how long it takes as a hunter/gatherer to get enough wild seeds in one place to make a handful? It’s back breaking work and takes hours.

              It would not have been easier for prehistoric man with no containers beyond a bit of skin possibly, after they thought of it, after they had clothes first.

              How long before there were clothes?

              Do you have a clue how many seeds/grains you have to gather before you have enough to see in the bottom of your skin bag once you have a skin bag? After millions of years with no skin bags.

              The other thing you people are short of is an imagination that allows you to see/visualize the challenges of living as a primitive human with NOTHING.

              Our ancestors spent more time with NOTHING than we have with clothes or stone tools.

              That’s when our bodies were shaped into their current form. Each technological advance we’ve made since then has come at a physical cost. We gave up something.

              As for citing stuff, do you expect me to cite myself?

              The stuff I write about is stuff I’ve thought through. It’s original thinking. The raw material. You guys are used copying other peoples thoughts and progress is made so slowly you make glaciers look like avalanches.

              That’s okay though because you can correct me. But I’m not seeing anything of a positive nature.

              Sites like this are best for original free thinkers to develop and refine new ideas.

              You can’t make progress in the realms of potty posture if you are talking about light frequencies and who knows what.

              When you do that you are wasting this site and reducing yourselves to kindergarteners.

              There are some bright minds here but they are all spinning in neutral.

              Why not THINK instead?

              Why not study what Dr. Greger really said in this video?

              How long did this video take? A few minutes to touch on a few key points? It was the barest tip of the iceberg for this subject.

              So much more to talk about and this thread was the best you could come up with? Why bother?

              People who do creative thinking as a lifestyle like I do are nearly always loners as I am for the simple reason that when new ideas hit the public, it’s like throwing yourself headfirst into a garborator.

              So we tend to react harshly. Please don’t take what I said personally.

          2. John

            Given that Neanderthals were regularly gathering, cooking and consuming gluten-containing grains deep in the Paleolithic, I find it hard to believe that other contemporary humans were not.
            https://www.pnas.org/content/108/2/486

            There is even evidence that hominins were eating these gluten-containing grains raw over a million years ago.
            https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00114-016-1420-x

            This may all be directly contrary to the narrative that you tell yourself but the evidence suggests that grains (including gluten containing grains) appear to have long played a significant role in the human diet.

            1. You are not going back far enough in history Tom. Neanderthals were contemporaries, not ancestors so it does matter what they were doing, does it.

              Our digestive systems started evolving 3.6 billion years ago don’t forget. One called animal territory and grew from there. Between then and now there was lots of time for zero grain consumption.

              By the way, if gluten was consumed before 15,000 years ago, yet the fossil record shows dental destruction starts then, how do you account for that watershed event between perfect dentition for everyone pre 15,000 years and then universal dental destruction starting with the very first recorded gluten dependent culture after that milestone?

              Today, gluten is the number one cause of gingivitis in my opinion based on what has been scraped from my teeth and my former diet.

              Once it’s possible, I’m going to get plaque scrapings analyzed to prove my theory conclusively. I’m pretty sure that will be a no brainer.0

      3. Hi John,

        Very interested in what you have to say, Where can i get your book? As you seem to have done several rewrites are you able to recommend the version that is best.

        Let me know!

        1. Hi Simon,

          It’s available on Amazon now but doesn’t ship until August 10 – September 3.

          Yes, I’ve written it over and over, but that is the editing process. Only the Final edition is available. It will be available as an eBook too. In fact it would be available already except that I forgot to approve it.

          People may say what they like about my lack of science, but it isn’t science, just what works,

          You’ll have fun with this book Simon because it’s interactive. It will give you lots to do and learn.

          It won’t take you long to figure out just how ridiculously this pandemic has been handled by every health agency on earth but one.

          That one is in California. Its successes were buried within hours of their press conference.

          Since the book is now on Amazon it cannot be buried. But it’s publication in the US by Ingram Books appears to have hit a snag due to the virus.

          How’s that for ironic? The country that needs the book the most cannot print it.

          Writing KILL THE CORONAVIRUS has been a race against the clock and the virus from the very beginning for me. Every delay due to editing was like the lash of a whip. Once I lost a week because I thought I was done. Instead, I’d misinterpreted a message.

          It’s been a brutal ride in every way imaginable.

          The years and years that went into the research and more importantly the time I spent at the computer took a huge physical toll. Not just for that book mind you, that’s just the first one of a series. I still need to get the index for the poop book done so it can be published too. It’s a companion book.

          Getting it done means index and more editing. And no money of course. Oh well.

    2. YR, that’s a fascinating story. I’ve always wondered if people who have passed on can communicate with those of us who haven’t “gone beyond” yet. Did the light blink on and off in any recognizable pattern or frequency? The reason I’m asking is that I’m currently doing some research in “resonant frequency” theory. It turns out that if two entities oscillate at the same frequency, they can easily transfer energy back and forth between each other. That’s just another way of saying they can communicate with each other. (See short video at the link below for a quick simple demo). As Tesla remarked, the key to understanding the Universe is through understanding vibration and frequency theory.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CguKKl9mX2s

      1. “Did the light blink on and off in any recognizable pattern or frequency?”
        – – – – –

        Don’t remember that, Darwin, but do remember shaking my fist and scowling up at the blinking light bulb. There are two above the sink but only one was saying hi. I also said to him, “Showing off, huh? You learned a new little trick and now you’re trying to embarrass your poor ol’ sister. Why not another room, why the bathroom? :-(

          1. YR, That book looks fascinating. Have you read it yet? Having a background in science and math, I haven’t had the time to delve into these areas until I’ve recently retired. We humans have made tremendous accomplishments in understanding the Universe, but there is so much more we don’t understand. I kinda share the attitude of Socrates, who claimed he didn’t understand the universe, but neither did anyone else who claimed that they did at the time! Even with all the accomplishments that Humankind has made so far, there are still vast unexplored landscapes, especially concerning life, consciousness, and death. Thanks for sharing the link to that book.

            1. Yup, got it from the library — good read, as they say. And many think we have “all the answers” once we pass over, but that ain’t necessarily true….depends on many things. Fascinating subject.

              1. YR, On your recommendation, I will definitely get a copy and read it! From the reviews of it, it does sound fascinating.

        1. YR,

          I’ve had two neighbors, both women, in different neighborhoods tell me about blinking red lights in their homes. One woman said the light goes off when there are strong emotions. Both women have said they have had these circuits checked by electricians repeatedly, to no avail. I tend to believe them. I also believe in UFO’s because there are thousands of credible wittnesses and mountains of hard data. I have seen one with my own eyes and filed a report. The UFO I saw was a green ball of light, moving fast and silent, maybe 100′ up.

            1. YR,

              Well now, I haven’t seen any of them thar aliens yet. Or maybe I have. Francis Crick said life may have come here on debris from elsewhere. Also, biologists are saying that squid are not related to the rest of the life kingdom, and that they could have come from elsewhere. Also, squid are very intelligent. Maybe they are watching us.

              1. Mine are watching from inside my stomach. They get a free guided tour of my entire digestive tract for as long as they can stand the fun.

      2. Darwin

        ‘the key to understanding the Universe is through understanding vibration and frequency theory’

        It could be argued that this has been posited for thousands of years. Aum (or Om) was thought to be the ultimate/sound/vibration/principle in ancient Indian thought, underlying all reality. In Chinese thought, the Dao (the Way or Great Note in some teachings) had a number of similarities to this concept. Equally, in ancient Western thought, the Logos (‘Word” in English) was arguably broadly equivalent. The idea of the ‘Logos’ was later borrowed by ancient Jewish philosophy and subsequently by Christian theology, and altered to make it appear to confirm contemporary religious belief systems.

        1. Fumbles, Yes, I agree that this concept of cyclical phenomena such as vibrations, particularly in sound, but also in other parts of nature, has fascinated we humans for centuries. There are several authors in recent years who have tried to connect the teachings of the ancients with modern quantum physics. In fact, the most promising physics theory to date, String Theory, is based on the vibrations of one-dimensional strings in a setting of an 11-dimensional universe! Of course, there are a lot of “missing pieces” in that theory, so it will inevitably be modified in future years to be more complete and still remain consistent with observations. And there are also several competing theories in the works, but all of them seem to have the concepts of “vibration and resonant frequencies” embedded in them. Thanks for sharing the insight that most all ancient cultures have recognized this way before Tesla!

  2. It seems like women always have a problem in this department, and I like most guys, just go about once a day like clockwork. My theory on this is that if I sat down to go #1, I might get the urge to go #2, and I think that because most women are sitting for #1, they don’t develop the subconscious muscle memory of holding it to a point and let it out bits at a time, and they wind up not moving it through as the body does normally.

    1. So, men sitting down for #1 is a typical thing in most places. It also helps tremendously for cleanup since splatter is virtually eliminated. It was weird for me at first I admit, but now I find its awesome, and elps too with a fuller emptying of the bladder I think.

      So now I only stand for entertainment and eye-hand coordination practice these days! lol

      1. jazzBand,

        THANK YOU!!! I wish more men would sit for #1; the splatters are unbelievably gross! That’s one reason I HATE unisex and family bathrooms. Yuck!

        Meanwhile, my brother posted this sign in his privy: “Gentlemen, Please Be Seated.” The reason was that porcupines liked to chew on the salty wooden seat otherwise. (Which is another indication of how gross standing to pee is. I mean: pee splatters on the seat!!). I’m thinking of posting this sign everywhere bathrooms are shared.

  3. Defecography can’t be a thing, it just can’t. Smile for the camera!

    Potty squaty’s are only good for one thing, making every guy in your family stub his foot on it making a loud noise and a swear word in the middle of the night.

    1. Vicki,

      He has mentioned that fiber supplements don’t work the same as food with fiber, so it is food with fiber even if you are eating animal products, too.

      Dairy is highly constipating.

      I always loved dairy but I ate so much cheese and drank so much milk that the stool would get so hard that it would be so painful to go to the bathroom and it would take forever.

      Just switching to oat milk and vegan cheezes made such a big difference.

  4. Dr Gregor touched on but did not elaborate much on colon motility. All the fiber in the world isn’t going to find its way to the pot without healthy colon motility. Sure, eventually all will pass before one ruptures internally, but the colon is more than a passive tube. I don’t eat much now that I am old but my diet is very high fiber, WFPB, and vegan. I only go about 3X a week, but by the end of the week I am sure I would have as much to show as the lauded piles of Africa. The 3x a week result in excess of 2 lbs of lost weight each time, and 2 or 3 flushes not to overwhelm the plumbing. My main point here is that I think frequency indicates more than the amount of fiber intake, and could have implications for neurological or other health issues.

    1. Ron, the topic of slow colon has been mentioned by many people but yet to be addressed br Dr Greger from what I have seen. It isn’t a question of fiber… eating wfpb – very high fiber for years doesn’t alter the facts. What did make a difference was doing a trial with FODMAP diet at the suggestion of my doctor, sometimes using Domperidone to increase motility, increasing water intake and the all-important morning cup of coffee. (I would say for me, “essential” cup of coffee.)

      1. That link shared by spring03 directs you to an article on Healthline that is wrong from the very first sentence, “the first step to a healthy bowel movement…” and gets worse as it goes.

        The first step to a healthy bowel movement starts with food choice. Your body cannot improve or avoid the consequences of a fundamentally wrong choice.

        The comments about fermentation reflect typical rhetoric that accepts fermentation as a natural, inevitable consequence of digestion. There is no fermentation unless you have made that fundamentally wrong food choice and put it in your mouth.

        Farts and bad odour therefore are signs of poor food choices because good food choices don’t result in fermentation which then causes a bacterial bloom we don’t need and don’t want. We are not herbivores and don’t own multi-chambered stomachs.

        Meat cannot decay in the human gut if the transition time has not been excessively extended.

        Natural transition time for a natural meal is 12 – 18 hours. A natural dump takes between 3 to 7 seconds unless a previous meal was huge. Anything else is impossible.

        Time to urinate can take between 10 an 90 seconds depending on whether or not beer and lots of it was on the menu.

        Obviously there are thousands of factors affecting how long it takes to have a natural dump and pee. But those times can give you a pretty good idea of what to expect from a plant based diet that is untainted with processed foods.

        Fibre that comes from processed food does not carry water within it. Therefore, I make the distinction between live and dead fibre.

        Live fibre enters the digestive process fully hydrated in most cases. Dead fibre enters dry and attracts moisture to itself, thus dehydrating the body one mouthful at a time. This is what grain does in most cases. Oats can be a significant exception.

        Since processed foods are so dehydrating, and added sugar makes the effect much worse, people have, recent years, taken to carrying water everywhere.

        The ancient people populating this site know very well that carrying water everywhere was not at all common until people started becoming constantly dehydrated.

        We didn’t need to carry water everywhere because the vegetables we ate kept us hydrated.

        Besides that, if we needed water, we drank from drinking fountains that were everywhere in public places. All the water we needed was free. There are no epidemics from drinking fountains in my memory banks.

        Everything you put in your mouth affects transition time, digestion, vitality and your ability to maintain your health.

        Most people are staying home to avoid COVID-19, but very few of those people are taking the down time to fill the vast knowledge gap between their ears – nutritional information researched food item by food item.

        This is a subject every one of us should have learned in school but few if any ever learned even the basics.

        If you did that, the comments made so far on this thread would be far more illuminating than they are.

        In fact you would be talking about the errors and omissions in Dr. Greger’s ground breaking video.

            1. Fumbles, That’s an interesting article. On the rare occasions that I make pancakes, I use whole grain Rye flour, and of course, no dairy or eggs, just a little almond milk.

            2. I’ve eaten every kind of grain available except for sprouted bread. I have never seen that. Don’t suppose that I don’t like grain. The reason I have had the issues so long as I’ve said, is directly due to grain, dairy, sugar and excessive meat consumption. So I’ve spent years analyzing what those products do to me. I can play my body like a musical instrument using food. Since I’m not an alien, it stands to reason, others have the same issues I do to varying degrees. I’ve seen that often enough to know it’s true. I’m kind of surprised to see the resistance to this line of thought among a population that should be more open minded and knowledgeable. In fact, I’m really surprised at how little people here seem to learn from Dr. Greger.

              1. The only two breads I eat are: one toasted slice of Ezekiel bread at breakfast time, and a toasted slice of Bread Alone sourdough bread at lunch (with nothing-added peanut butter on top). I found a place in my area that sells the sourdough bread: Adams Fairacre Farms. If they ever stop selling it (doubt if that will ever happen), I’ll attempt to make it from scratch, like Dr. J. does. In addition to that, a couple of whole-grain meals somewhere during the day.

                Never had trouble with toilet-sitting procedures.

  5. Yay!! First of all. I will not poo-poo your information. In fact I loved it because my daughter pushed us into gettin a stool to raise our legs for us. In fact, because we would not buy one, she gave us one. Because of your article, out goes the stool. By the way, you reached the point were you more or less said that 3 movements a day was good. Since I went on your diet a year ago, I feel great, but I have enough fiber in my system that usually I have a single large, easily passed bowel movement within an hour of waking. It occurs within seconds.There was a Doctor on the Oprah Winfrey show over 2 years ago, and he said that my way (once per day) was the normal way. He went as far as to say that the size of a normal B.M. was a half dollar. I haven’t been comparing the coinage size of my movements, I just know that they are very good movements, leaving my body easily. Not too slow, not too fast – – just right.

    1. Bed Pan death syndrome is one that I have never heard of.

      I might have guessed it to be a patient hitting the nurse in the head after they offered a bedpan.

      Hospitals don’t just give some Dulcolax or something?

      For some reason, when I think of the advice of putting the hands on the bathroom floor, I go back to the unisex bathroom concept and I think I am going to be using some hand sanitizer after posting this comment.

      I also imagine falling on my head and having to explain it to the ER.

      My uncle used to fall asleep on the toilet for an hour between 4 and 5 in the morning and he did have a few ER visits from his head hitting the bathroom tiles and his sense of humor was to tell people that I hit him and he said it to the people who responded to the 911 call and his eyes were twinkling or I would have had explaining to do. My grandmother did the same thing and made the same joke with twinkling eyes and I said to her, luckily, I have relatives on the police force or the two of you would have me getting arrested.

      I did learn though not to joke back because my uncle eventually did it one time and I am the one who said, “So, who punched you in the eye?” and he looked so serious and said, “So, someone really did hit me?” and I don’t have anyone to say that joke to if it is me, so I have to keep eating fiber.

  6. The older people were talking about COVID-19 and they all said that the hardest part is that it has gotten nearly impossible to know who to trust and it becomes that you know better than to trust anybody and you also know better than to not trust anybody. You can’t live either way. You have to choose.

  7. 19 states have seen their two-week death totals increase by more than 20 percent in the last two weeks.

    Even Connecticut has had 3 days in a row of increased hospitalizations.

    Maine is at the bottom now mostly because they aren’t allowing most other states to even visit.

  8. I’ve said it before. The shortest way to explain good nutrition is to drop the F (iber) bomb, with the enticement, “You could be pooping faster than you pee.” After all, why stress your brain by reading thousands of studies when the proof is in the pudding?

        1. Deb,
          It’s great that we have become a literate society. I remember some decades ago when there was a group protesting that “fart” was in the dictionary. The definition, at the time, was “an explosion between the legs.”

          1. My experience on the net recently indicates that partially literate would be a more accurate expression. The word literate is entirely too generous.

      1. Deb,
        I’m glad you like the use of the term. Um, I don’t understand why people who are on pain meds would be interested in fiber. Because fiber helps with movements or pain in general? Better health makes one feel better.

  9. I also read more on the cost of COVID in USA.

    It is soooo ridiculously complicated.

    First off, some states and some insurance companies are waiving the fees for some people.

    For instance, United Healthcare is waiving it for Medicare patients, but not for people who get their insurance through their employer or who buy it themselves, and you have to make sure you go to a participating network or you might not get it waived even if you qualify to have it waived.

    Also, if you have a comorbidity, the answer gets way more complicated.

    For instance, my brother has cancer, and for cancer patients, if their cancer has any symptoms, they end up not being able to get their COVID-19 payment waived.

    The fact that people with comorbidities are the ones who tend to need the ICU and longer hospital stays, that group has to know that they will have to pay and if they die their relatives may have to pay.

    1. A Texas woman said that the drive-thru test costs $6000, but that she was only responsible for $2000 of it.

      But I have already found articles of people who already had to refinance their houses because their hospital bills were over 400,000.

      One got money on “go-fund-me” but a health care person in Texas told me that people there don’t have to pay and I told her that I am finding news article after news article where they are paying and quotes from mayors saying that they will pay a hefty price for the medical care.

      Not even healthcare professionals understand that insurance is like a box of chocolates, you sort of know what you are going to get, but the jelly center still surprises you.

      1. I think the woman with the test was saying that the test would have been $6000 but that the physical test was waived, but the medical person standing in the parking lot is where the over $2000 went toward. She said that they called it emergency service, even though she didn’t get out of the car.

    2. Deb,
      I was in the produce section of a grocery some years ago when a young man fell to the ground siezing. Fortunately, his dad was there to help. A woman nearby asked, “should I call 911” and the dad yelled out, “Whatever you do, don’t f______ call 911” I didn’t understand it at the time. Maybe now I do.

  10. I say that because people want to travel but it could be the difference between ending up with a million-dollar COVID-19 bill at the end just from being out of network.

  11. If you have a comorbidity, if possible, you will have to not let them treat you for that until your COVID-19 is treated.

    Or just plan to go bankrupt. Medical bankruptcy is the biggest type of bankruptcy in the states, but you can only do it once, so it would be really hard to go bankrupt for COVID if you have something like cancer. I guess, let them threaten you for as long as possible before the bankruptcy.

    My brother said that even one of his scans costs $7000. No matter what he will have a seriously high deductible, plus co-pay every year or he has to stop getting scanned.

    It is so hard to figure the logic out.

        1. John,

          In the USA, the news hasn’t been emphasizing that the free COVID tests might cost you over $2000 in hospital fees and they aren’t saying whether it will cost the full $6000 if you are out of network.

          People are going to lose their houses or maybe have their paychecks docked for the rest of their lives.

          Back near the beginning Dr John C.read that he believed that COVID costs were going to be free in the USA and I responded in his comments, “I don’t believe you.”

            1. I thought about it this morning. Employers are having people get tested multiple times because they need two negative tests to come back to work.

              Three tests with $2000+ hospital fees or three tests with $6000+ fees if you accidentally went to the wrong hospital and were out-of-network, could mean $6000 to $18,000 without even one moment in the hospital.

  12. In my condo we’ve had three elderly men die from heart attacks in the last few years from straining on the toilet. It’s more common than thought. I have two cups of coffee in the a.m. and flush out completely once/day normally. I’m plant-based and eat a ton of fiber, including a massive bowl of oats in the morning after exercising. At 77 I’ve never felt better, especially after my BM.

    1. I had a paramedic brother-in-law in Australia. He said that (fatal) strokes from straining to defecate on the toilet were a common cause of emergency call-outs.

      1. Tom,

        I am sure that elderly people falling asleep on the toilet because it takes 45 minutes to go probably is a common cause of emergency call-outs.

        All that pretty tile in bathrooms on the walls and floors looks so nice when you are younger and it looks so dangerous for the elderly.

        1. That is the price you pay for chowing down on bread instead of vegetables. And 45 minutes for a bowel movement is constipation personified.

          1. I don’t think that there is any evidence that wholemeal bread promotes constipation. In fact there is some evidence that wholegrain (rye) bread is an effective solution for constipation

            ‘Compared with laxatives, rye bread reduced TITT by 41% (P = 0.006), fecal beta-glucuronidase activity by 38% (P = 0.033), and fecal pH by 0.31 units (P = 0.006).’
            https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20089780/

            What is more, cereals and grains are vegetables

            Vegetable = A plant or part of a plant used as food
            https://www.lexico.com/definition/vegetable

            1. There is plenty of evidence that whole grain bread causes constipation. You just have to know how to look for it. Don’t forget who controls the direction science goes in on this topic.

              Any scientist coming out and baldly stating that would soon find him or herself selling pencils.

              So you look at percentages.

              The amount by which whole grain bread is better than refined flour is 23%.

              But 23% better than what?

              The numbers given are ambiguous and because everyone wants to believe in the goodness of grain the numbers are accepted universally.

              When you start reading what the numbers really mean you find they mean the opposite of what is intended.

              The thing is, no one, including me wants grain to be the bad actor.

              I have done countless tests many different ways on myself trying to prove myself wrong. Not once have I ever been able to fool my body.

              I know I’m more sensitive than most, but that just makes me a better lab rat.

              I’m the human zebra danio, or better yet, betta splendens.

    1. YR,

      I have already read other stories like that.

      Young people are so naive and they don’t know who to listen to.

      My heart goes out to their families.

      The people who got people to think only old people will die have no concept yet.

      We aren’t even going to get out of the first wave this summer.

      The experts predicted 500,000 deaths by Labor Day and we got their before July. We are going to be at 600,000 before August.

      It is devastating that1/3 of the deaths in Miami are people under age 60.

      Florida fired their data person because they had asked her to make the numbers look more optimistic.

      Florida has so many elderly people and so many Latinos.

      I am devastated that so many leaders and press people and science people and insurance companies are going to play games right now.

      I couldn’t even watch Dr Popper today.

        1. I could have said, the not-so-civil war. Community spread is starting here. I’ve seen EMT’s in full haz-mat picking up a body bag recently. A neighbor has a son with Covid-19.

          1. Awww, sad. It is sad when death is nearby and you know that it has taken someone.

            I don’t know a body bag concept of death. I wonder when they do that.

            When my relatives have died, there was so much dignity to the process, but it has been stretchers, not body bags. The funeral home director who knew my grandmother well and who has buried just about all of our relatives showed up in his suit after midnight with a team of his strong men. and said, “We will give you as much time with her right now as you need, we will be outside until you are ready.” and after the body left the house he said, “Because I consider her as a lifelong friend, I will not be the one handling her body at all, but I have chosen someone who will treat her as if she was my family member.”

  13. Off topic.

    I don’t know if anybody else is concerned about ageing and vision loss but I found this recent Science Daily article below very interesting. Be aware though that I don’t think that we know for sure about the long-term safety of this technique

    ‘Researchers found the 670nm light had no impact in younger individuals, but in those around 40 years and over, significant improvements were obtained.

    Cone colour contrast sensitivity (the ability to detect colours) improved by up to 20% in some people aged around 40 and over. Improvements were more significant in the blue part of the colour spectrum that is more vulnerable in ageing.

    Rod sensitivity (the ability to see in low light) also improved significantly in those aged around 40 and over, though less than colour contrast.

    Professor Jeffery said: “Our study shows that it is possible to significantly improve vision that has declined in aged individuals using simple brief exposures to light wavelengths that recharge the energy system that has declined in the retina cells, rather like re-charging a battery.

    “The technology is simple and very safe, using a deep red light of a specific wavelength, that is absorbed by mitochondria in the retina that supply energy for cellular function.’
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200629120241.htm
    https://academic.oup.com/biomedgerontology/article-abstract/doi/10.1093/gerona/glaa155/5863431?redirectedFrom=fulltext

      1. John

        You must have missed that bit. They said

        ‘ their eyes were exposed to 670 nanometre (long wavelength) deep red light.

        “Mitochondria have specific light absorbance characteristics influencing their performance: longer wavelengths spanning 650 to 1000nm are absorbed and improve mitochondrial performance to increase energy production,” said Professor Jeffery.’

        https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200629120241.htm

        1. Tom,

          When I was looking at red light and infrared products, there were a lot of testimonials for the eyes. I have had both red light and infrared products for a long time, but I always used goggles because goggles came with them.

          When I was looking at the testimonials, people were discussing using it on their eyes with their eyes open and I read that about a year ago and wouldn’t try it because I already have eye problems. But it stayed in the back of my mind because one of the people who used it had ophthalmologist next to her name.

          The testimonials said that they lost all floaters and had vision improve and I think at least one was about cataracts.

          I finally started using it after my cousin inherited my infrared and PEMF. I bought the one the ophthalmologist was using because I didn’t want to make a mistake.

          I have lost all the floaters and my vision does seem clearer. It is short amounts of time. 2 to 3 minutes and I have only been doing it for over a week.

          Not having floaters is something that I didn’t really notice them all that much while I had them but boy do I notice them being gone.

          1. They say that it helps with:

            General vision – visual acuity, Cataracts, Diabetic Retinopathy, Macular Degeneration – aka AMD or age-related macular degeneration, Refractive Errors, Glaucoma, Dry Eye, floaters.

            So far, in one week, I stopped having floaters and I have improved vision, particularly in my left eye, but both eyes seem clearer. I have reading glasses, but sometimes had trouble distinguishing between 6’s and 8’s in certain fonts but it definitely seems easier today. I also feel like I have less eye strain. I have video games that I use for brain training and I was able to go an extra 2 levels after having been stuck on one level for a long time. I think my eyes generally give out and feel strained from focusing that length of time but the past 2 times I played it, I didn’t have the sense of my eyes suddenly feeling dry and painful and strained, so I didn’t get as sloppy at that level.

            I am also using infrared on the vision center of my brain.

            I was so encouraged by the improvement that I ended up impulse buying lutein because now that I want to try to eat from my dry goods, I am eating smaller portions of greens.

            1. I just did a test of closing my right eye and reading accounting numbers at work with my left eye and I could read the numbers. I tried a few other tests and I can see well enough with my left eye to read. That is a substantial improvement after just a few sessions. I think it has only been 3 sessions. I just faced the fact that my gadgets were going to be in use for months and it took me time to figure out what was worth getting. The one I bought is more expensive and isn’t as “good” in many ways, but I bought it because of the testimonials with the eyes and brain.

              I am really hoping that it will help my brain.

              1. They also say that it helps with fat cells and glucose metabolism and insulin resistance and inflammation.

                I mentally decided that I would try the mouse study for those things and this week, I have been treating my thighs, abdomen, chest and arms for that and I think I might be having fewer cravings for sugar. I am going to try eating potatoes this weekend and see if I can eat them and not crave sugar 2 hours later. I have also gotten off of the no-oil hummus and that was so hard for me. I really have enjoyed eating it.

                My scale needs a battery, so I haven’t seen if I lost weight this week, but my pants do feel looser and I feel like I don’t have any swelling.

                I read this sentence, which sounds like a sales gimmick sentence, but there were enough PubMed articles that I will enjoy the sales gimmick-type sentences and see if it adds a placebo effect bump to whatever real effects I get.

                “Clinical studies show that when a fat cell is exposed to a specific wavelength of red light, it releases 99% of its contents within just a few minutes. Called photobiostimulation, this process leaves the cell deflated — like an empty balloon!”

                Yes, sounds like a scam. I can’t imagine that all of my fat cells just released 99% of their content and if they did, where did that content go?

                Totally a scam.

                But if my fat cells release a little of their content and if I can eat potatoes and not have sugar cravings, I will take it as a win.

                If not, I will just enjoy that I can type this sentence just using my left eye and I can read it.

                1. Well, there are studies. I haven’t read them yet, but I did find some.

                  Possibly there was a leptin and ghrelin study and that makes me happy and I do think I am less hungry already.

                  The International Journal of Endocrinology in 2012 released a study that suggested red light could control the hunger hormones in your body, namely leptin and ghrelin, and doing so to manage your weight.

                  There are 5 body circumference studies.

                  The Journal of Obesity Surgery in 2011 did a study on red light therapy for body contouring. In its findings, participants saw a significant reduction in waistline girth after 4 weeks, where red light therapy was administered at 635-680 nanometers.

                  I feel like my pants fit differently in one week. More than the clothes fitting differently, I feel like my body feels different to me. I put my hand on my leg or my stomach and they feel different in one week.

                  I don’t really care as much about that as I do the not being hungry. If I can simply not have sugar cravings after eating potatoes and if I can not crave hummus or vegan processed food or Lara bars, I would already be happy.

                  I have to recharge some of my rechargeable batteries and see if I lost weight this week.

                    1. There are also several studies for executive function and some for not making as many errors.

                      And something called a more efficient prefrontal blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD)-fMRI response.

                      I have been so worried about my brain function and after eating the month of processed foods, I felt like I might go back into hallucinating and night terrors. I didn’t go back and it is hard to explain but I guess people who have migraines have a pre-migraine experience and I felt like I was going to go back into losing my mind. That too much fat or too much stress could hurt my brain that quickly is why I started looking at regenerative medicine again.

                      It is easier to succeed at using infrared than to succeed at sleeping at night or at changing appetites, etc.

    1. Tom.

      I have been playing with this and it has improved my left eye function.

      I have an eye condition where my brain has decided that it is better to shut off the electricity to my left eye because I am already too double-minded.

      Hard to trick the brain enough to keep the power on, but I got some glasses that only let my right side see every 3 seconds and that was helping until I misplaced them.

      I was trying PEMF and there are case studies where that might help but I would end up falling asleep with the coils on my eyes and what was supposed to be a 3-minute exercise would end when my body had to pee. Funny that “have to pee” is so powerful at waking the brain up. Better than an alarm clock.

      Well, anyway, my personal theory is that it will be harder for the brain to succeed at shutting my left eye off in an electromagnetic field.

      1. Deb

        ‘I was trying PEMF ………. but I would end up falling asleep ‘

        Then, isn’t that the solution to your sleeping difficulties?

        1. Yes,

          It worked for a while.

          So did Vitamin D for a while.

          It seems like things work for weeks or a month.

          But it is 2 in the morning and I am still pretty wide awake.

          I am falling asleep hours before 4 and I am never still awake at 7 in the morning anymore.

          For most of the time I have been here, I didn’t fall asleep before 4:30 am.

          I get way more sleep than I used to, but until COVID, the Vitamin D seemed to be enough.

          I wonder if it is the stress or the processed foods.

          Either way, I get more sleep than I used to.

          Still no Lonie.

          Wondering if he is in the hospital for COVID someplace or in a nursing home/rehab someplace or no longer with us.

          I hope he is still alive someplace and that he will come back with a story.

          I will miss him if he is gone.

    2. Fumble,
      I can barely see what you wrote.
      When I went to the eye doctor 2 weeks ago he said, before we get started, do you have any complaints?
      I said yeah, everyday I get up and look in the mirror and I don’t like what I see.
      The optometrist said, well, I don’t know what to tell you but your eyesight is perfect.

      1. Thank you Yerky.

        Like YR, I have exactly the same problem when I look in the mirror.

        As it happens, my New Year’s resolution for this year was to improve my eyesight. I was aiming for 2020 vision.

        1. Fumbles, how were you (are?) you planning to get it to 2020? My left one has never been as good as the right one….which isn’t saying much.

          Lotsa luck.

            1. I forgot…. people made a lot of similar “2020” jokes at the beginning of this year. You’re just getting into the act, is all. So, for you: har-har. :-)

  14. While in Japan years ago, I noticed that it was common to find the commode to be a porcelain rectangle in the floor requiring one to squat to defecate (or urinate if a woman). After reading this article I now realize how beneficial that is versus the west’s sitting style commode. It really does help give a sh*t!

  15. When I changed to a whole grain and plant based diet a couple of years ago my stool changed as well and could be characterized as chronic diarrhea. With things that squishy, I have become increasingly worried that I might not be absorbing adequate nutrients and damaging my health. Recently I changed my diet a bit, adding some eggs, low-fat yogurt, and sourdough bread and reducing some of the more fibrous foods like oatmeal and brown rice. But…reading this article with Dr. Greger’s conclusion that eliminating up to three times a day is normal I wonder: Is my diarrhea actually O.K. since I usually eliminate just twice a day? Should I disregard the stool quality and just pay attention to the number of daily flushes? I would like to continue eating all the foods Dr. Greger recommends which I know would be best for my heart health. Thanks for your feedback on my dilemma.

    1. A major reason why people quit plant based diets is because their body starts functioning properly and they think they have diarrhea.

      You don’t have diarrhea, your body was finally given a chance to do a thorough cleaning and you mucked it up again.

      Go back to your plant based diet and your stool quality will change.

      In fact, it will change frequently according to what you eat.

      It’s important to check your stool after each dump so that you can learn what is normal based on what you know you’ve eaten when.

      In this way, you will gradually learn your transition times and which foods cause delays and which foods speed things up.

      If you keep a food diary, you’ll find you can predict how you will feel tomorrow today.

      When you don’t feel well, you’ll know exactly why that is.

      This is where you start learning how to manage your own health. This where you will also learn what grain consumption really does to you that food scientists and the processed food industry hope you never find out. This site is infested with people who know Jack about this subject because they are addicted to grain.

      Actually I am too, but I’ve weaned myself off of grain to be able learn about myself what you can learn about yourself.

      Don’t worry, you won’t starve.

      If you catch a cold, whatever you do, stay away from grain, dairy and sugar.

      Enjoy your new life. You will find it pretty interesting and exciting even, once you kick the grain habit.

    2. If you had chronic diarrhea, you’d be going a lot more often than twice a day.

      You could however try a gluten-free diet for a month or so and see if your symptoms resolve

      1. That said

        ‘The reason health professionals don’t want to see people on gluten-free diets unless absolutely necessary is that for the 98% of people that don’t have gluten issues, whole grains—including the gluten grains wheat, barley and rye—are health promoting, linked to the reduced risk of coronary heart disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity and other chronic diseases.’
        https://nutritionfacts.org/video/gluten-free-diets-separating-the-wheat-from-the-chat/

        1. Grains are also linked to those. Very same diseases when the science is not bought and paid for by processed food interests and not done by constipated scientists.

          1. John,

            Dr. Greger is not discussing grains in processed food form. Neither is Tom. Neither are the researchers.

            Everybody is in agreement about that much.

            1. John,

              People tend to lump every whole grain into a processed food category.

              That is where the confusion and obfuscation begins.

              1. Yes you’re right on that. Taxonomy needs to change to eliminate the confusion.

                It won’t though because the taxonomists don’t know there is an issue yet and neither do the food scientists.

            2. Well I’ve explained my position on grains with respect to Glue/gluten.

              Despite that I’ve seen no evidence any of you understand its significance.

              Those grains without glue are to me, seeds.

              I guess it would be easier if I were a taxonomists and could change the nomenclature to clarify things. But for now we are stuck with awkward semantics.

              I’ve never tried health restoration with seeds in my diet such as maize or sorghum so about them I can’t say one way or the other.

              But the reality is the for most people, grain means gluten/glue and that’s what I’m talking about when I’m talking about grain.

              It’s the gluten that destroys health.

                1. Mr Fumblefingers, you are joking right?

                  About 1 in 100 people — about 1 percent — have celiac disease, an inherited autoimmune disease that causes damage to the small intestine when gluten is ingested. About . 4 percent of people have a doctor-diagnosed wheat allergy, according to a 2006 study.Feb 12, 2014

                  Constipation is widespread among Americans. Almost everyone experiences constipation at some point in their lives, with a recent survey showing that 16 percent of Americans and a third of those older than 60 suffer from chronic constipation.

                  Keep in mind that those numbers are based on the erroneous definition of constipation we can all agree is wrong. That being so, I would say the number of Constipated Amercians is closer to 90% or 90 out of one hundred Americans are constipated.

                  Most of you “knowledgeable” members of this site are constipated and most Americans don’t care about their diets as much as you do.

                  During my research I decided to list all of the diseases that have been found to be caused by constipation, linked to constipation or where constipation is considered to be a side effect.

                  I came up with 55 conditions, most of which if left untreated are fatal.

                  I am no doctor and I did not pass Grade 12 Chemistry. You all probably did. So you go google hunting and see how many different diseases and conditions there are where gluten(glue) consumption is causative, linked or is a side effect.

                  Keep in mind that when constipation is considered a side effect, it’s usually causative. There are exceptions though. One being drugs of any sort. Nearly all if not all cause constipation.

                  So Dr. Greger recommending everyone not sensitive to gluten to continue consuming it to see if more celiac patients can be found is ludicrous.

            3. Ever try eating grain that isn’t processed? You might as well eat gravel. Same nutritional impact. Even rodents can’t do that. So any thoughts nutritional benefits beyond unnecessary roughage is pipe dream country.

    3. Benton, Here is a helpful article for reference clarifying diarrhea which as you’ll see often is watery, not just loose stool and is accompanied by other symptoms:
      https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diarrhea/symptoms-causes/syc-20352241 So based on what you’ve indicated you can re-diagnose yourself as not having diarrhea and resume your healthier whole food plant based diet. Oatmeal, brown rice, soy yogurt are all healthy foods for most folks so you can continue with them, esp since you are trying to eat all other foods recommended.

  16. There have been other countries that have said that their patients got it back a second time and there were patients in NJ who seemed to have gotten it back.

    But the part that seemed important was that he had very mild symptoms the first time where the second time, he had more serious symptoms and ended up with multiple trips to the hospital.

    During his first infection, he had a mild cough and sore throat.

    Three months later, when he was testing positive again, he experienced a high fever, shortness of breath, and hypoxia, with multiple trips to the hospital.

    1. Perhaps it is like flu. Recovering from one flu strain does not give us immunity to all other related flu strains. Viruses mutate all the time. Possibly there are multiple strains of the covid-19 virus in circulation.

  17. I wish I could hear Dr. Greger’s response to that one.

    Mathematically, my mind wants to be able to figure out because people are getting it 3 months later and that seems more like how colds go? Do people get the flu twice in 2 or 3 months?

  18. Is the other option that it had been hiding for 6 weeks and would that mean it has properties more like HIV where it is able to hide?

    The one thing that COVID-19 could genuinely mess up that could cause more deaths is that they think they might run out of HIV antivirals.

    They will also be slow on malarial nets, but that is more logistics and they are getting those out there.

    I assume they will figure something out with the HIV meds, too, but they said that millions of people are being kept alive with those meds and COVID being more urgent has taken the resources.

  19. What are the other options? Maybe that there are false positive tests and it can stay around for 3 months, but the person felt well for that length of time and then got much worse.

    Shingles would be something that lurks for a long time.

    No matter what, people getting it a second time complicates things. Or getting way better, then way worse again.

  20. What I notice is that it didn’t go the other direction where the first time was bad, but this time the T-Cells and antibodies fought back and the condition was milder.

    Maybe people said to themselves, “I don’t have to be as careful anymore” and they got a larger viral load?

  21. This man has been talking for a while about Ivermectin.

    He said that there was a clinical study from treating 1300 patients and 99% of them were cured.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VfTvViI8IKI

    The USA is very slow to study it. Probably because of how inexpensive and accessible it is. Maybe they are afraid people will self-treat (and they will) but it might be safer than what people do for self-treating everything else.

  22. Use a Benjo, not a toilet. The Japanese have used them for centuries. A Benjo is a porcelain hole in the ground that you squat over to use. It is to be flushed afterwards. From what was discussed in this video that would be the ideal. Either that or go out into the woods where there isn’t anything to sit on to defecate. Hunters and harvesters have been doing that for thousands of years.

    1. NIce try Henry. While you are young, a Benjo may suit nearly everyone with all of two legs. Try using one of those if you have one leg or are missing parts of both legs or are in some way crippled. Most likely you’d fall in.

      As a hunter, I have never used a hole in the ground. I look for a fallen tree and sit on that. Very comfortable. Finding suitable leaves can be harder.

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