Health benefits of squat toilets:In praise of squatting

The Japanese style Squatting
The Japanese style Squatting

Not only the squatting system of toilets provides better sanitary requirements, there are health benefits of the squatting positions of defecation or toileting.

An elegant study was performed by Sikirov (2003) published in the prestigious "Digestive diseases and sciences" journal to identify the best defecation process by comparing the straining forces and the particular feeling of the strength of the defecation effort during normal bowel function in various toilet systems. Of the sitting positions used; the western style at a raised height, at a lower position and the squatting or Indian styled toilet systems. Subjects were asked to time their defecation process and note their time needed for the sensation of defecation till the time of satisfactory bowel emptying and the effort of intensity of defecation on the 3 different positions. The study revealed that the sitting defecation posture requires more effort compared to the squatting posture.

The principal cause of constipation is the result of the awkward nature of the angle of rectum (bottom) when defecating in the sitting posture normally used in western method of defecation. The only or the best normal defecation position is squatting posture allowing smooth bowel removal.

Another study showed that the "chronic traumatic hiatal hernia" also known as the "gastroesophageal reflux disease" is the direct cause of not using the common and worldwide practice of squatting.

Furthermore, the "diverticular disease of the colon" is a common feature in several western countries due to the unnecessary injury caused at defecation process due to customary clearing of the bowel in a sitting posture commonly used in the western world.

Humans have evolved into a species following 1.5 million years of standing erect and using the squatting position for toileting therefore "squatting" is the most natural way to go.


Dig Dis Sci. 2003 48: 1201-5

Yale J Biol Med. 1999 72: 69-80

Med Hypotheses. 1989 28: 71-3

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Comments 19 comments

IĆ°unn 8 years ago

nicely sourced and informative.

also, it tangently reminds me of the idea of alternate childbirth methods rather than the mother lying on a cold table horizontally. it is said that crouching makes birth easier, less dangerous and more beneficial to both mother and child. I don't know it if it is true, but I'm incined to think it makes sense.

MrMarmalade profile image

MrMarmalade 8 years ago from Sydney

i have read other sources which appear to lean towards squatting. Who knows in another twenty years we may be doing that

Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 8 years ago

Good hub. If I recall, the ancient yogic texts favored squatting. (It's been a while since I read any)

Zsuzsy Bee profile image

Zsuzsy Bee 8 years ago from Ontario/Canada

Sorry to be the one to disagree with the squatting notion. First and formost question: where to put your clothes? Picture while your squatting your pants and underroos are laying on the floor around your feet. Pray to heaven the person before you had proper aim. Secondly and just as important: I have a friend who uses a walker to get around. She has enough trouble getting from point A to point B. If she were to get down as far as squatting she'd definitely wouldn't get back up. I've spent a good part of my life on the floor pinning up pants and wedding dresses etc. my knees are blown. Thumb down as far as I'm concerned.

Great hub though regards Zsuzsy

bmorganfit profile image

bmorganfit 8 years ago

If more people in the Western world did this on a regular basis, we probably wouldn't see so many seniors who have lost their mobility, have problems bending over to pick things up, or have trouble getting up from a chair. Move it or lose it.

prasadjain profile image

prasadjain 8 years ago from Tumkur

Funny but useful hub

The PooP Doc 8 years ago

This is the correct way to move your bowels. This is one of the reasons Americans are so constipated. They don't know the proper position for going #2. Great information. Thanks.

dafla 8 years ago

My knees won't let me do this, but good hub.

krusher 8 years ago

Wow - what a horrible topic to write on! You did a nice job but really ... the most healthful way to s**t! Wonder if the animals worry about how they take a dump? And for those worried about getting their clothes messed up - just another point for becoming a nudist! :-)

pepe 7 years ago

wow!! this squat position is working for me ....thank u

flyingdoc 7 years ago

clothes - take-em off

you dont say - I can take a shower because I might get my jacket wet!!!

surprisingly when the anatomy of the body was evolved, where to put your undercrackers when taking a dump was not high on the list of evolutionary targets

Common Sense 7 years ago

Knives and forks instead of using our fingers was a fine advancement, however we were never meant to sit on A TOILET!!!!!!! We are in fact 'civilized animals' and animals SQUAT!!!!!!!!!! The price of clothing removal to squat is still a lot less than any doctor telling me to come back in because they think they found something.

Paul 6 years ago

Actually a doctor described how the same effect of squatting could be achieved while using western toilets: sit down like normal then spread your legs apart and lean your upper body forward and bring your arms down as though trying to grab your ankles. Basically you're folding yourself but still supported by the toilet so those with bad knees can still do it. I've a large gut and a bad hip and I can do it. Try it for a week, you'll be glad you did.

steve 6 years ago

the ssquat and dump, only takes 5 minutes, at the same time you can work on your balance strengthen your ligaments in your knees and preserve your abdominal muscles. the most natural way is to shit outside in a hole in the ground, not in the water we use to bathe and drink

joseph 6 years ago

thanks for all

GigglingOne 6 years ago

Well I thought this was a great topic to discuss. I am a nurse and so many times see patient with constipation and/or difficulty going to the toilet, especially patients bedbound. we encourage them to lie on their left side and bring their knees up to their chest, same postiton as squatting but whilst lying down. The way we were programmed to work is to squat, both with birthing children or birthing other items that come out from that general region, Good advice, lets get over the embarrasment [ we all do it] and get down to it. [ so to speak] :)

Joy-Ann 5 years ago

Too bad I didn't find out about squatting many, many years ago, as I suffered needlessly -- just turned 50. I more recently found out about squatting and started squatting a few months ago. WOW! I feel like a different person. I noticed the big difference after only one week. More poop comes out for sure, which is a real good thing. Amazing!!! I lost that extra 10 pounds I was carrying around without even dieting and I believe it is due to squatting. I also think that the poop that didn't come out as a result of sitting and straining on the toilet had some kind of bad effect on me that caused me to overeat a bit and then to feel irritable. I also think the toxins that stayed in me from incomplete defecation on the conventional toilet caused me to feel irritable and depressed. Thanks to squatting I now have a complete evacuation, instead of a partial one, and I feel much lighter and I'm more energetic. Even my skin and hair looks much better, my stomach is flatter and my overall health has improved greatly. IMO sitting down to poop on the toilet is a slow suicide.

Rudra profile image

Rudra 5 years ago Author

Absolutely, its amazing - the benefits of squatting is not promoted.

Judy 5 years ago

Squatting is amazing it changed my bathroom experience for the better after years of so many colon issues. Wish I had known about the benefits of squatting much earlier in my life. I know these problems could have been totally elimiated.

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