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Non-Negotiables for a Consistent Bathroom Routine

Lately, I’ve been going to the bathroom almost every day. And yes, I am bragging about that, because consistently going number two is a sign of optimal gut health.

This is one of my biggest achievements since starting my gut health journey. When I was diagnosed with IBS over four years ago, I struggled with chronic constipation followed by bouts of diarrhea. Irregular bathroom habits were the first sign that something was off with my gut health, but I never seemed to be able to “crack the code”.

Of course, everyone's body is different. Some people’s “normal” might be once a day, multiple times a day, or every other day. It’s important to find what feels right for your body. For me, going once every morning is ideal.

For years, I couldn’t achieve this consistency. Even after changing my diet, eliminating trigger foods, and incorporating supplements, my bowel movements improved, but were nowhere near optimal. I discovered the root cause of my chronic constipation, and corrected issues like low stomach acidity and dysbiosis. This helped symptoms like bloating, nausea, and brain fog, but I still struggled with consistent bowel movements.

Once I moved to Brazil and established a dependable routine, I really started to notice a positive impact on my daily bowel movements. For one of the first times, I was able to consistently go to the bathroom, without relying on additional supplements or extreme diet changes!

Below, I outline the non-negotiables that helped me achieve regularity. These habits are simple (mostly free!) and have made a significant impact on my gut health journey.

As always, please consult a medical professional before making any changes that affect your health. I hope incorporating these habits will help you experience the same benefits I have!

Eating at the Same Time Everyday

I didn’t really believe that eating at the same everyday would have a significant impact on my gut health. I thought it mattered more what I ate, not when I ate it. However, once I started to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the same time every day, I realized that these timings helped my digestive system.

Our body, including our digestive system, has an internal clock, and thrives off of regularity. So, eating meals at the same time every day optimizes your body's natural physiological processes, like digestion. Eating at regular intervals allows the body to release digestive enzymes around the same time everyday, because we start to anticipate food intake. This then helps us have the right gastric juices and digestive enzymes to break down food and absorb its nutrients.

The predictability of when we eat trains our GI tract to work like a clock, so that way we begin to empty our bowels at the same time every day. When you eat on a consistent schedule, you will go to the bathroom consistently!

Optimizing your Circadian Rhythm

In the same manner of having consistent mealtimes, we also want consistent sleep-wake times. If we go to bed and wake up inconsistently, we throw off our physiological processes, including digestion.

Our circadian rhythm signals to our body when it is time to go to bed at night and wake up in the mornings. By optimizing this naturally occurring cycle, we are able to optimize our digestive system.

By pairing consistent sleep patterns with consistent meal timing, we can synchronize these processes, leading to better digestion and nutrient absorption. Research even shows that aligning meal times with circadian rhythms can improve metabolic health and reduce the risk of metabolic disorders.

Some of my favorite ways to optimize my circadian rhythm are:

  • Circadian walks in the morning and night

  • Sunlight first thing in the morning

  • No caffeine after 10AM

  • Low light settings at night

  • No phone/doom scrolling before bed

Warm Lemon Water

Every morning, I make warm lemon water with a pinch of sea salt. This was a habit introduced to me by my naturopathic doctor, and I truly believe that it has helped me go to the bathroom consistently. Not only does it help hydrate your body after a night of sleep, but it supports your body’s natural detoxification process (including pooping!).

The warm water helps to soothe your stomach and aid in digestion. The acidity of lemon juice stimulates the production of gastric acid, and also the enzymatic functions of the liver. This improves digestion and your detoxification process. Lastly, adding in a pinch of sea salt incorporates electrolytes, helping to actually hydrate your body so you can properly go to the bathroom.

Plus, I think having a consistent aspect of your morning routine, like drinking warm lemon water while you sunbathe, without distractions, helps to signal to your body you're in a relaxed, parasympathetic state. Regulating your nervous system through routine helps your bowel movements.

Castor Oil and Lymphatic Drainage Massages

At night, I started to either do a lymphatic drainage massage on my stomach or wear castor oil packs - or sometimes both! Since my bloat is usually worse at night, I have found that massaging my stomach with the DigestZen essential oil blend helps the movement of my bowels the next day.

For an abdominal massage, I will rub this essential oil blend in a clockwise motion along the length of my colon. This is proven to help release trapped gas, support your lymphatic system, and stimulate peristalsis, the wave-like muscle contractions that move food and waste through the digestive tract.

Usually on 4/7 nights of the week, I will use castor oil packs. Castor oil is another way to help your body’s lymphatic system, because the ricinoleic acid found in castor oil can penetrate deep into your tissues. This stimulates the lymphatic system, improves blood flow, relaxes intestinal muscles, and supports liver function. Overall, it contributes to healthy digestion and regular bowel movements and I have made it a non-negotiable in my routine.

Re-Introducing Foods Back into my Diet

If you've been following my journey, you know that the elimination diet was a turning point for my gut health. Removing gluten, dairy, soy, and corn initially, and later eggs, chicken, and starchy foods significantly alleviated the bloating and gas I experienced due to SIBO and dysbiosis.

Despite these improvements, I was still struggling to go to the bathroom daily. While the elimination diet effectively addressed my SIBO and dysbiosis, I realized the need to embark on the next phase of my gut health journey: Reintroducing foods that had once triggered chronic inflammation and constipation. It was a gradual process, guided by small quantities and high-quality ingredients.

Among the foods that have made the biggest impact are beans and yogurt. I used to not be able to tolerate these foods because of SIBO, and they triggered my GI issues. After a year of diligently healing my gut from SIBO and dysbiosis, I found a way to slowly reintroduce these two foods back into my diet.

The diversity of foods I was able to consume again helped my microbiome to flourish; signaling a significant milestone in my gut healing journey. Since beans are fiber-rich and the yogurt I was consuming (just fermented milk) had probiotics in it, I believe it helped me to now go to the bathroom almost everyday.


I hope this was helpful in helping you to establish a routine to go to the bathroom everyday! I would also recommend my posts on Chronic Constipation? The Root Causes You Need to Know About and The Elimination Diet to help you dig into the root causes of your irregular bowel movements.


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Welcome! If you made it here, you are probably looking for answers on where to begin your wellness journey. I'm Jessica, and I started my gut health journey over 3 years ago. As an avid foodie and wellness enthusiast, I hope to inspire you on your realistic wellness journey.

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