SQUAT – DON’T SIT!!!
Change your toilet so you can heal constipation
(and many other health problems)
by Stephanie Relfe B.Sc.
You may find this information incredible – but read on. It may begin to make sense once you get used to the idea.
Believe it or not, the current toilet seat is a comparatively new invention. It was developed in the Industrial revolution by people who thought it was more ‘dignified’ to sit on a ‘throne’ than the way the natives did. However, many doctors at the time were worried about this causing health problems because it went against nature. But in Victorian England where even table legs were covered with long table-cloths because they suggested legs (which were called only “limbs”) it was considered very improper to discuss such things.
If you have ever felt, as many, many people do, that after you have evacuated, there is still something left, here is the reason:
The anal canal is UNSTRAIGHTENED when seated. Bowel evacuation when seated results frequently in OBSTRUCTIVE CONSTIPATION.1
Adopt a relaxed, FULL SQUAT POSTURE and the anal canal STRAIGHTENS.1
This obviously can help constipation. Months later other health improvements can happen, due to your body being free of extra toxins. Also, bladder function may improve after several months because of an improved pelvic floor nerve supply.
Oncologists have observed that 80% of colon cancers occur in the caecum and the sigmoid colon, the two areas that are not fully evacuated in the sitting posture. This causes fecal stagnation and probably explains why colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. In traditional Asian and African cultures where squatting is the norm, colon cancer is virtually unknown!
Most hemorrhoids will heal without relapse when, upon urge, the squat posture is adopted for bowel movements.2
Another serious condition caused by sitting to evacuate instead of squatting is the leakage of wastes into the small intestine. This affects the ileo-caecal valve, which is considered by modern medicine to be inherently flawed because it is so often leaking. Ask a kinesiologist and they will most likely tell you that the ileo-caecal correction is one of the most common corrections that needs to be done. Also, the toxins get into the bloodstream and hence put more pressure on the liver which has to detox them.
Most sufferers usually notice significant comfort improvement within seven days of making this simple change of habit to the squat posture because body wastes pass through the straightened anal canal.
I began to learn all this when I visited India, where I learned to use an Asian toilet (“Eastern toilet”). The first one I saw was in an airport. I went into the cubicle. It was very clean and there was no smell. It all seemed quite strange, but I had been warned. The cubicle was fully lined with tiles. In the middle is a gutter. You squat either side of the gutter and do your stuff. On the side there is a tap and a bucket (no toilet paper). You fill the bucket with water and pour it on yourself to wash you clean. Then, if still needed, you pour more water in to wash the waste away, down a hole at the end of the gutter.
A story told by my mother made me realise that this may be more important than we think. Mum said how one day she was out somewhere in Australia and went into a public toilet. Accidentally she walked into a toilet where there was someone else. The funny thing was – she saw that the person in there was balanced up, squatting on the toilet! Now, that is a lot of trouble to go to. I assume that if you have been used to squat all your life, then you really KNOW how unnatural and difficult our modern toilets really are.
After discussing this subject with a woman I met, she told me that she once dated a man from a South American country – I think from memory it was Venezuala. He said that he was very angry at the Catholic church because before they came everybody squatted. And after they came in, people changed to western style toilets – and a high percentage of the population developed all kinds of health problems which they did not have before.
It is especially important for children to squat. Place a raised area that is as high as the potty or toilet in front of the potty or toilet. Try this for yourself – you may be amazed at the difference.
I have a suspicion that if someone was to do some research, they would find that there is a correlation between height and incidence of bowel cancer. I believe the shorter a person is, the more likely it is that they will have bowel problems, because when they site their bowel is even more bent than it is for taller people who can manage to lift their legs up a bit.
One problem we in the west have with squatting is that most of us have lost the ability that we had as children to squat with our feet flat on the floor (see picture below). I didn’t even realise this until I visited India. Two ladies came and cleaned the tiled floor of a room I was staying in. I was amazed to see them clean the floor while squatting, and walk around while squatting, with their feet flat on the floor the whole time.
If you have children, encourage them to squat fully every day (even if not on the toilet) to maintain this ability. For yourself, start practising every day and gradually the ligaments may stretch back so that you can do this again.
I am convinced that western toilets also contributes to difficulty in having a natural, painless, relatively quick birth. The muscles ‘down there’ have lost the strength and flexibility that they would have if they were being used daily by squatting when going to the toilet. Squatting is the natural position for having a baby. It opens up the passage and gives the baby more room. Plus gravity helps the baby to come out.
It was a French king that invented the horror of women having a baby lying on their back – so that he could see his son being born (imagine lying on your back when you are super constipated!). Most western women cannot maintain a squat long enough to have a baby in that position.
I am also convinced that this is why waterbirths are by far the best way to have a child. Tens of thousands of women who have had waterbirths used NO drugs – which is fantastic for the long term development of their children. I myself had a water birth and cannot imagine doing anything else. It was when I was in the tub that I realised the huge benefit of being in water – I was able to SQUAT! The water is deep enough to support a squatting position that, with my poorly developed squatting muscles, I could never have maintained without water.
There are also dozens of other benefits to having a water birth – including having a baby that does not cry at his birth and cries a lot less thereafter. See www.waterbirth.org
There are several ways you can manage to turn your present toilet into one where you can squat:
1. In USA, purchase a platform from http://www.naturesplatform.com/. It is VERY sturdy and can be easily folded and put to one side. (See picture below).
2. In Australia, purchase a different type of toilet converter, the “In Lieu” from Self Help Concepts, PO Box 222, Macksville NSW 2447. Tel 02 6569 9030 (wholesale enquiries welcome). They also have a book with more information for sale. However, I much prefer the Nature’s platform – it’s more comfortable because the platform is level, and you can add whatever height heel supports you want. It may not be tall enough for Australian toilets, but you can stand it on a plank of wood.
3. Pile up bricks around your toilet (make sure they are safe and sturdy)
4. Consider having a real eastern toilet in your house.
5. If you can’t manage any of these, it can work quite well to place a foot stool in front of your toilet. Try to get one as tall as your toilet. Give it a go – you may be amazed at the results!
This is especially important for children because of their shorter legs. If they use a potty, there should be room for them to put their legs to the side – not just in front. The Baby Bjorn potty is the best I have found.
FEEDBACK FROM READERS
Incredible ! I found your article on the internet while trying to find out if I was just very strange or if someone came to the same conclusion! I am a 25 years old French guy and I had a lot of constipation problem. I had always thought it was psychological: it took me a lot of concentration to manage evacuating… And I was always feeling that I was not completely empty.
As I am a big scientist I made a lot of experiments on myself trying to find a way to deal with what I thought was a psychological problem. This is what drove me to try changing my posture on the toilet, thinking it might help my unconscious problem…
First I tried to sIt on the other way, like I was riding the toilet. It helped a little bit but not significantly. More recently I went to live in Mauritania, and I found out during a trip right in the middle of nowhere, that I had no problem of constipation when doing it in the nature. I first thought it was because I was far from stress and civilisation… until I tried the same position at home a few days ago: I just couldn’t evacuate in the regular position, but surprisingly, at the same moment, I had no problem when balancing up, squatting on the toilet!!!
So I think you are right, there is a mechanical problem with modern toilets!
I am very happy to have come to the end of my problem of constipation, but I don’t know if it is going to be easy, where I am not home, to perform the acrobatic squatting on the toilets that are there! The web is so incredible; it allows people to share their ideas and can really change things! Thank you for your article, I am going to send your article to my family!
Hi, I found your article re: squatting for the toilet and it has solved an issue I had where I felt like there was an obstruction. I was mortified at the idea of having to go and see a doctor about this problem so am really grateful for your article.
Keep up the good work!
1) Ref: Primary Constipation – An Underlying Mechanism” Sikirov B.A. Medical Hypotheses 1989 Feb: 28(2):P71-73
2) “Management of Haemorrhoids – A new approach” Sikirov B.A. Israel Journal of Medical Sciences: Vol. 23 1987; 284 – 286
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