CharlieMC (charliemc) wrote,

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TMI: Activia (Yes, I Have to Go There!)

Okay, this is going to be TMI (Too Much Information, for those who don't do cyber-speak). Feel free to ignore or avoid. But I just have to go there and talk about Activia...

Consider yourself warned!!!

We've all seen the commercials, right? And heard the catchy little ditty, "Act-tiv-ia!" We've also heard and seen the jokes and skits, some that even show Jamie Lee Curtis supposedly pooping in her pants. Ha ha. Funny!


Well, here's the thing. Apparently due to a somewhat botched surgery when I was six years old, I've had a life time of bowel issues. (This wasn't discovered until a few years ago when I had a hysterectomy that turned into a more major surgery with multiple surgeons.) Ultimately the WHY doesn't really matter: I could have had bowel issues due to any cause, as many, many people do. I often think a normal bowel is less normal than people think.

And, yeah, I get it. We're still big kids at heart, and poop and pooping is both funny and embarrassing. It's easy to make jokes and laugh -- and we're laughing at ourselves as much as anything.

That said, we all poop. And if we're healthy, we poop every day.

But not me. Never in my life have I pooped on a daily basis. And for most of my life my cycle would mean I'd only poop every three or four days -- and sometimes that could be even more days between bowel movements. And it doesn't take a genius to reason out that this isn't healthy. Not at all.

Yes, diet and exercise have helped sometimes. But only helped somewhat.

And it wasn't thought of as that strange in our family. My dad had a history of bowel problems and constipation that made the whole family less concerned than we probably should have been. I don't think I can think of any time that I knew dad not to have issues. He lived on prunes and prune juice, among other methods of coping.

For me, it wasn't always a question of actual constipation and hard stool -- it was more a question of pattern. On the rare occasions when I had genuine constipation, I would get horrible constipation headaches. But I recall these from high school on, and not prior to that. And these were few and far between. Later in life I did deal with some severe constipation that made me rock hard and doubled over rolling on my bed in real agony, close to unable to pass anything. That's not fun, believe me.

Time to talk Activia, my friends! I've only been using it for a little more than a week, but since the VERY FIRST container, I've been pooping every day. And that's just unheard of for me!

I'm not using it as they recommend, which is multiple times a day. I simply eat one container of Activia every morning for breakfast. I've been eating the 'Light' variety (only 60-70 calories each) and mostly the peach flavor (I had strawberry/banana today, though). I haven't had cramps (I guess some people do), or any other negative side effects at all. And sometimes I poop more than once a day. (More than once a day is not strange for me, because when you only go every several days, you do tend to have what I've always called 'Pooping Days' -- where you're in and out of the bathroom.)

Please note that I have used other yogurts over the years, but without these results -- or even close. Just to be clear.

Anyway, I'm not suggesting that my pooping is now 'perfect' by any means. But it's so amazingly improved that I can't help but feel good about it. I wouldn't share something this TMI and personal if I didn't feel it might help somebody else to read it. It's probably odd how much difference pooping makes to our daily lives, but it is one of those foundations of health, after all.

I know Activia isn't inexpensive, as yogurt goes. You can get it cheaper at Walmart, if you're someone who shops there (as I do). I suspect some flavors are more pleasant than others, though I think I'd use it even if I found the taste unpleasant, in all honesty. The containers are small, so it's not that much to eat.

In the scheme of things, this may be a small change in my life. But I'm pretty happy I decided to give Activia a try!

If this makes people want to picture me walking around telling everyone to use Activia and pooping in my pants (as those Jamie Lee Curtis skits and jokes go), so be it! I can't know how well this has worked for me without sharing it. Consider it highly recommended!

Poop and pooping? Still funny. But not so funny when you don't do it for a long time...

Tags: 2012, activia, digestive-health, health, november-2012, poop

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