Why you should not sit on the toilet for too long 

Do you frequently sit on the toilet for more than 10 minutes at a time? It's really unhealthy for you.

Portable toilets (photo credit: SHUTTERSTOCK)
Portable toilets
(photo credit: SHUTTERSTOCK)

Many of us like to spend a lot of time in the bathroom and relax while we do our daily business. But Dr. Karan Rajan warns of the painful consequences this can have and gives three tips on how to avoid them.

Some people go to the bathroom just to do their needs. But others enjoy sitting on the toilet calmly with a newspaper or while scrolling through their phone. But it's really not healthy to camp out on the toilet according to Dr. Karan Rajan, who warns against sitting for more than 10 minutes on the golden throne.

Rajan, who gives medical tips on social media, posted a TikTok video in which he revealed three things to avoid in order to prevent hemorrhoid surgery.  

Hemorrhoids are enlarged or swollen veins in the lower part of the rectum (the final part of the colon).  Common symptoms are rectal bleeding, itching and pain. Hemorrhoids can be visible (external), meaning they can be seen or felt in the outer part of the anus, or they may be hidden (internal), inside the anus.

Hemorrhoids are quite common. Nearly three out of four adults will suffer from them occasionally. They’re more common in older people, yet women who have constipation or diarrhea during pregnancy, or those who sit a lot throughout the day and forget to stretch, or those who can’t do these things because of physical challenges, are more prone to develop hemorrhoids.

So, what should we do?

First, Rajan suggested: "Try to be on average no more than 10 minutes on the toilet at a time. The longer you sit, the more blood can accumulate in the rectal veins and cause hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids swell inside the anus and are very painful."

Another important tip to avoid injury is "don’t strain" as he showed how the problem occurs and said: "Everyone has 'anal pads' which contain blood vessels and prevent us from pooping on ourselves. But if you constantly strain while evacuating, these vessels can swell and cause hemorrhoids.

Tip number three was to consume dietary fiber. 

Studies show that most of us need more dietary fiber from whole wheat flour and which is in foods like bread and breakfast cereals. But remember to check labels and avoid sugar.

"Unless you have a medical condition which prevents it, eat between 20 and 30 grams of fiber a day," said Karan. 

He added that the bread crusts and hard ends have fiber, along with fruits and vegetables. If there’s a peel which is edible, scrub it and eat it to get the maximum amount of fiber from your produce.