London: Taking a closer look at your bowel habits could lead to improved digestive health.
This week is the UKs 11th annual Gut Week (24th30th August), which aims to raise awareness of gut disorders and the importance of good digestive health. The week focuses on giving practical advice and information on how to ensure a healthy bowel movement which means a closer examination of the nations toilet habits.
According to new research by Yakult, Brits are happy to multi-task on the toilet with many of us texting, surfing the net, and making phone calls. One in twenty even admit eating and drinking on the loo. However the majority of Brits are still unaware that sitting on the toilet for too long could be taking a toll on our health.
Worryingly, 18% of those surveyed have suffered from cramps or pins and needles from sitting on the toilet too long. Despite this, nearly two thirds of polled (65%) are unaware that sitting on the toilet too long can cause haemorrhoids.
Dr. Simon Gabe, Consultant Gastroenterologist at St Marks Hospital, Harrow, commented: Some people do occupy their time on the toilet for all sorts of reasons. Generally this is harmless, but there are a few health risks worth being aware of.
There are problems which can arise from spending too long on the toilet, such as haemorrhoids, bleeding and worsening problems with emptying the rectum. More importantly, eating on the toilet runs the risk of contaminating the food with bacteria from the toilet. This may cause a bacterial gastroenteritis, which is an infectious diarrhoea and can be very severe.
To hear more about the importance of digestive health from cricketer Phil Tufnell, click here:
Gut Week is organised by digestive health charities Core, The Gut Trust, St Marks Hospital Foundation, in association with Yakult.
For more information visit or advice on maintaining a healthy gut visit www.loveyourgut.com