Squatting is Likely Healthier Defecation Posture Than Sitting fact

Sitting or Squatting

Squatting probably provides a healthier defecation posture than sitting due to the excessive pressure that sitting creates.[1][2][3][4][5] Despite this truism, we lack studies comparing deification postures. Of the few studies done, there is a lack of consensus on health benefits and risks outside of pressure.[1] Below we take a look at what we know and think we know.

Why Is the Sitting Defecation Posture Considered Less Healthy?

The primary reason sitting is potentially unhealthy is due to the “obstructive nature of the recto-anal angle”, or rather the angle you sit at makes the rectal passage smaller and means you have to work more, which causes excessive pressure.[4] This can result in constipation and is thought to contribute to conditions such as hemorrhoids and colon disease. While this may be true, studies haven’t shown a clear link between posture and health risks like colon disease.[1]

Is it science or pseudo-science? A little bit of both actually.

Why Are We Talking About This?

At times, scientists and healthcare professionals have made headline’s with statements like “squatting is better and natural” or “squatting allows the anorectal angle to straighten so that less effort is required for evacuation.”[6] This has caused somewhat of a trend in the west (where toilets tend to be designed for sitting rather than squatting) evangelizing the squatting position.

This trend has led to a number of products including the “squattypotty” which mimics the position of squatting by using a foot support in combination with a western-style toilet.

#SquattyPotty. The squatty potty is no joke, sometimes people prefer soft science over hard science.

How Can We Know Which Posture is Best?

We may assume that squatting is better because of the pressure sitting causes, but we can’t really know which is best due to the lack of studies. About half the world uses the squatting position and has squatter-style toilets. We know that almost no animals use the sitting position. We can study nature, other cultures, and even our ancestors to paint a clearer pictures of the health benefits and health risks of our posturing, but we lack research.

 Squatting is Likely Healthier Defecation Posture Than Sitting


The few studies on the subject seem to point to the idea that squatting causes less pressure than sitting. This in itself arguably makes squatting healthier than sitting. However, the lack of studies makes it hard to drawn deeper conclusions about potential health benefits and risks of either position.


  1. Squatting and risk of colorectal cancer:a case-control study.” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.
  2. Comparison of straining during defecation in three positions: results and implications for human health.” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.
  3. Cardio-vascular events at defecation: are they unavoidable?” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.
  4. Primary constipation: an underlying mechanism.” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.
  5. Etiology and pathogenesis of diverticulosis coli: a new approach.” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.
  6. For Best Toilet Health: Squat Or Sit?” Npr.org. Retrieved Jan 19, 2016.

Author: Thomas DeMichele

Thomas DeMichele is the content creator behind ObamaCareFacts.com, FactMyth.com, CryptocurrencyFacts.com, and other DogMediaSolutions.com and Massive Dog properties. He also contributes to MakerDAO and other cryptocurrency-based projects. Tom's focus in all...

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