How often should you have a bowel movement?
How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement?

How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement? 1 or 3 Times A Day?

How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement? Defecation can lead to health disorders. Speak a healthy bowel movement frequency, does this mean it should be every day, or a few days once enough?

Read also: 13 Causes of Frequent Bowel Movements

Apparently the answer to this question is a little more complicated.

There is actually no specific frequency of how often a person has to defecate in order to be considered normal and healthy. The most important thing is what you think is normal.

Therefore note the bowel movement routines. This is important to you, the doctor can also find out if everything is normal or not.

Read also: Small Bowel Resection: Definition, Indications, and 19 Risks + VIDEO

How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement?

Defecation is the body’s way to remove residual substances that are no longer needed or toxins in the body. In the feces, contained 75% water, dead bacteria, live bacteria, proteins, fibers, and residual substances from the liver and intestines. On average, people secrete feces as much as 28 grams every 5 kg body weight.

Then, How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement?

There are various aspects of assessing the level of the normalcy in terms of bowel movements frequencies.

Age, diet, activity levels, and more can influence how often your bowel movements are. But generally, frequencies, three times a day up to three times a week include normal.

So, you don’t have to worry if you have a less frequent bowel habit than your friends. Indeed, there are people who always defecate every morning once a day, and there is also an erratic person defecate three times per week.

Read also: Risk Factors, Causes, and 9 Symptoms Of Bowel Obstruction + Treatment

What affects the different frequency of bowel movements in each person?

Eating habits

Your frequency of defecation is one of the most affected by your eating habits. And, of course, everyone’s eating habits are different. People who are accustomed to consuming fiber foods certainly have a better bowel movements so the bowel movement will be smoother every day.

Amount of water consumption

Your colon absorbs water, it is necessary to consume enough fluids (plain water) or 2 liters a day. Water intake is necessary to make the consistency of feces softer.

Body activity

In addition, how often your body moves can also affect how often you defecate. Regular exercise can increase the movement of the muscles in your intestines, so this will smoothen your defecation.


Stress also turns out to affect the frequency of bowel movements. Why? This is because your brain and intestines are connected by nerves and neurotransmitters. When you are anxious, the body will send more blood to the vital organs, such as the heart and lungs, so your digestive system will be interrupted. 

Then, it can lead to the frequency of your defecation more rarely or even more often.


With age, slowing of the bowel work leads to changes in the frequency of bowel movements. Older people also usually have more medication that can affect bowel movements.

Health history

The condition and health history of a person as well as the treatment performed can affect how often a person defecate becomes more often or less frequently. Diseases such as chronic gastrointestinal inflammation or abdominal flu may also affect your frequency of defecation.

What is a normal bowel movement like?

Arthur Magun, a gastroenterologist and professor of clinical medicine at the College of Physicians and surgeon at Columbia University, explained that normal bowel movements consist of feces that are brown in color, have a shape, not too hard but not too runny.

Defecation is less than three times a day and hard painful stool can be considered as constipation. Meanwhile, more than 3 times the watery bowel movements a day can show diarrhea. If the pattern, texture, or smell of your bowel movement changes suddenly, this is something worth talking about with a doctor.

Most importantly, when a nature call you in the back, don’t be arrested. Holding the urge for a bowel movement or waiting to go to the bathroom may also cause constipation, or make the symptoms worse.

Video Explanation: How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement?

Thank you very much for reading How Often Should You Have A Bowel Movement?, hopefully useful.

Last Updated on November 27, 2019 Reviewed by Market Health Beauty Team

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