This Unexpected Ingredient Can Make You Poop Instantly

Finding genius ways to get yourself to poop instantly seems to be a famous topic on TikTok and other social media platforms. We can only assume that this has something to do with the fact that 16 out of 100 adults have some form of constipation they're dealing with, according to the National Institutes of Health. Either that, or people just like talking about bowel movements. 

From eating a high-protein vegetable to get yourself to poop fast to viral hacks to poop in just minutes, there's really no shortage of advice out there. Turns out, there's a common sweetener, which is marketed as a natural and healthier alternative to sugar (we'll get to that in a minute), that could also do the same thing, albeit a lot more quickly — we're talking, needing a bathroom quick type of thing. 

Agave, a derivative from the blue agave plant, could cause diarrhea and gas in some people. But why does this happen, exactly? 

The fructose content in agave is the culprit

Agave syrup contains a high concentration of fructose, and fructose is a common irritant for people who are on a low FODMAP diet. FODMAP stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols, the chemical names of five naturally occurring sugars that aren't easily absorbed by your system.

For people with digestive conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), there's general dietary advice that recommends staying away from high FODMAP foods, and agave falls under the category of monosaccharide. "If your body is sensitive to excess fructose, it can cause excess problems to your bowels," shared Portland, Oregon-based registered dietitian Niki Strealy (via U.S. News & World Report). 

If you're thinking about other natural alternatives like honey and corn syrup that won't make you run to the bathroom in a poop emergency, think again. Honey and corn syrup also contain a high level of fructose, so it's best that you either limit or avoid these too. Now, back to the question that might be on your mind: Is agave all that better than regular sugar? 

Consuming agave as a sweetener: Things to think about

Traditionally believed to have medicinal properties and native to Mexico and the Caribbean, agave has since grown to become a popular alternative to plain sugar when it comes to sweeteners. It has a lower glycemic index (10-27) when compared with other sweeteners like honey and its GI of 58, maple syrup at 54, and table sugar at 63. 

"Coming from a plant, agave also has trace amounts of minerals including iron, potassium and magnesium," shared registered dietitian nutritionist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, Kate Zeratsky (via USA Today). 

But sweeteners are sweeteners, and excessive consumption of them can lead to weight gain and other health issues, either way. No-calorie options like stevia, monk fruit, and erythritol and even fresh or frozen fruit make better options, per the experts. In fact, agave might not even be a healthier alternative to table sugar owing to its dangerously high level of fructose. People who are watching their diet for digestive and poop reasons and those who are trying to manage blood glucose levels should ideally look for alternatives to this naturally occurring syrup. In fact, you might be better off trying the poop button to help keep things moving.