3 Super-Weird Reasons You Poop So Much During Your Period

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Blonde woman in park.

Finally! An answer.

Have you ever noticed that when you're on your period, you have a lot of other issues going on with your body? There are cramps, mood swings, and all the extra pooping. If it's not one thing, it's everything happening at once. Some women experience nausea or diarrhea during menstruation, but many of us find themselves pooping much more frequently.

Here are some reasons your period causes such a mutiny with your digestion.

1. Your uterus is close to your colon.

Right before your period, the lining in your uterus thickens to get ready for implantation. Your uterus is always hopeful. As the uterus get thicker, it can press up against the colon, which can lead to your old friends: constipation and bloating. As the uterus deflates, it can make it a lot easier to go — sometimes too easy.

2. Your hormones experience crazy chemical reactions.

Prostaglandins are hormone-like chemicals that let your uterus know to contract so your body can get rid of the uterine lining. Sometimes these chemicals like to flip the script and tell your bowels that they should contract as well. Hello, gas-bombs and having to go number two more than usual!

Then there's progesterone, a natural hormone that your ovaries produce. It's progesterone that gets your uterus ready for pregnancy and is sometimes called the pregnancy hormone. Throughout your menstrual cycle, your levels of progesterone slowing rise, peaking right before your period and then dropping dramatically.

Progesterone has a fun side effect: it's slightly constipating, so when those levels drop, it can loosen things up. Some woman will alternate between diarrhea and constipation during their periods. 

3. Your cravings for dairy wreaks havoc on your intestines.

There are times, when our uterine lining is breaking down, that we feel like we're going to break down, too. In order to feel better, we have a tendency to crave comfort foods which are often in the diary category, like cheese, ice cream, and frozen yogurt. Dairy + period = havoc.

In this video from Nova, science journalist and multimedia producer Anna Rothschild answers some not-so-gross, but still kind of gross questions.


Isn't it better knowing why your body is so wacky during your period? Now, go do something nice for yourself. You've earned it.

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