My first squatting-to-go-to-the-toilet experience was many years ago when I was on holiday in Vietnam with a few girlfriends. And yes, one of my best holidays ever. Toilets aside.
I remember being told at the time that most women in live in cultures with a squat toilet don’t get urinary tract infections or other bladder issues. This is because our posture changes when we squat, compared to when we sit to go to the toilet.
This cute little video with a unicorn explains it well 🙂
The main benefits of using a squatty potty – or squatting – to go to the toilet are:
- it makes it easier to eliminate waste, preventing “faecal stagnation” (ewww!), which is one of the factors causing colon cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and appendicitis
- it helps prevent straining, which can lead to haemorrhoids, hernias and prolapse – particularly helpful if you find it difficult to go
- if you’re pregnant (presumably none of the readers of this blog are, but anyway…), it helps support the uterus and helps prepare for a vaginal birth.
- raising our knees when we go to the toilet helps our pelvic muscles relax, which increases continence
- it helps you eliminate all the urine from your bladder, thus helping prevent urinary tract infections.
Apparently, constipation is the #1 gastrointestinal complaint in the United States. Using a squatty potty helps reduce this.
So when I read about squatty potties recently, I decided I wanted one. Quite conveniently, a friend was selling hers, so I was set!
I’ve definitely feel lighter when I use it, and when I’m using a toilet without one (pretty much everywhere except at home!), it feels weird. The version I have allows you to either stand on the squatting platform (I am in no way able to balance on this yet!) or sit on the toilet normally and pop your feet up on the bar across the middle.Health benefits of a squatty potty include increased flexibilty and strength - important as we ageClick To Tweet
One of my health goals is to be able to squat properly on my squatty potty, as it will mean that I’m significantly improved my flexibility in my ankles, calves and thighs, and also significantly improve my balance. Two areas women struggle with as we age. I’ll never forget seeing the older women in Vietnam, who must have been in their 70s at least, and marvelling at their flexibility and youthfulness, no doubt largely due to their toilet habit of squatting.
Do you have a squatty potty??
If you’re in Australia or New Zealand and want to buy one, there are various options, including:
- the Aussie Squatter, available from Nourished Life
- the Lillipad Toilet Squatting Platform (from New Zealand) – this is the one I have
- the Original Squatty Potty (where the cute unicorn ad comes from)
Would love to hear if you’ve used one and what you think.