A good follow-up to that "but first, coffee" mantra that many of us subscribe to could be "and then poop." Yep, if you're among the many who refuse to consume coffee unless there's a toilet nearby, then you know caffeine may make you poop almost as immediately as you consume it. "Coffee promotes peristalsis, which is the contraction and relaxation of the intestinal muscles," says Clow about this curious coffee-poop correlation. "For some people, the bowel-stimulating effect of coffee is a way of keeping regular."
However, since many of us drink our coffee first thing in the morning, a post-coffee poop could also mean your gastrointestinal system is simply revving up at the start of the day -- and coffee is providing a little push of sorts. "Drinking hot water (separate from the coffee beans or added caffeine) also has a stimulating effect," says Nora Zorich, MD, PhD and Chair, Arbonne Scientific Advisory Board. "In this sense, having a bowel movement after the morning coffee is also likely related to other drinking (such as drinking hot water) or eating, which stimulates intestinal contraction waves." But we'll stick with coffee over hot water, thanks, since it gets both our bowels and our minds going in the morning.