Whether you’re a smoker, a dipper, or just treat yourself to the occasional cigar, you might notice that using nicotine makes you want to take a dump. Turns out you’re not alone, and it’s not just your imagination.
Nicotine has a (very) long list of potential side effects, one of which is the sudden urge to have a bowel movement. That’s because nicotine is a stimulant. And while nicotine gets credit for stimulating your brain, it’s also notorious for stimulating your bowels.
Before we dive into the details, let’s get one thing straight: nicotine does not get the DUDE stamp of approval when it comes to constipation relief. We won’t rehash all the stuff you learned in middle school about lung cancer and gum disease. Besides, there are all kinds of safer (and cheaper) ways to make yourself poop, like slamming a cup of coffee, going for a run, or eating a crap ton of fiber.
Now that you’ve received the DUDE Safety Disclaimer, let’s explore the link between nicotine and poo.
Does Nicotine Make You Poop?
Yes, it’s normal to feel the urge to poop or even have diarrhea when using nicotine. It can also create a sense of fullness or pressure in the rectum. Some people call this phenomenon the “nic-shits.”
This laxative effect can strike whether you’re smoking cigarettes, using smokeless tobacco, or even chewing nicotine gum—all of which send nicotine in your bloodstream.
There aren’t any conclusive studies that “prove” you’ll run to the toilet every time you smoke a dart or pack a chew. However, nicotine is known to trigger a few chemical reactions that create the perfect storm for poo.
For starters, nicotine is a stimulant, just like coffee. When nicotine travels from your bloodstream into your brain, it triggers the release of dopamine and epinephrine—AKA adrenaline. These neurotransmitters elevate your blood pressure, increase your heart rate, and rev up your intestines. (You can blame adrenaline for runner’s trots and gym poops, too).
No wonder so many people turn to the coffee/cigarette combo first thing in the morning to poop.
Nicotine also stimulates your body’s nicotinic receptors, which trigger the release of acetylcholine. This is an “excitatory neurotransmitter” that stimulates contractions in the gastrointestinal tract and causes an acceleration of bowel movements.
Does Vaping Make You Poop?
If you stop smoking and make the switch to e-cigarettes (AKA vaping), you might wonder if you’ll experience a similar effect on your pooping habits. The short answer is yes: if your vape juice contains nicotine, you’ll probably need to plan a trip to the porcelain throne—or a PVP (post-vape poop) as the kids call it these days.
DUDES on Reddit even coined a special term for vape-induced defecation: “vooping” (a portmanteau of vaping and pooping). As MEL Magazine reports, many vape bros swear they’ll never hit the bathroom without hitting the vape.
“Vaping on the crapper in the morning is very euphoric,” writes u/TitoBanana. “You get a stimulant wake-up-call, both to your digestive tract and your brain; you can rid your intestines of whatever shitty food you ate the night before; and, of course, the nicotine rush is quite strong in the morning after sleeping.”
Some vapers also note that the vape’s fruity smell masks the stench of their dookies.
“It makes the room smell less of poop, but more of a Fruity Pebbles–scented poop,” says u/OhLongJohnson1, “which in all honesty smells a lot better than just poop, so that’s a plus in my book.”
If only these poor guys knew about the magic of DUDE Bombs Toilet Spray.
How Does Smoking Affect Your Digestive System?
Staying regular might seem like an excuse to pick up a pack of cigarettes, but we’re about to burst your bubble. Smoking absolutely wrecks your gut health and is linked to dozens of GI conditions.
Smoking can also raise your risk of developing peptic ulcers, gallstones, and colon polyps which can turn cancerous.
Lastly, smoking triggers the production of excess stomach acid, which can increase your risk of intestinal infections.
We could go on, but you get the point. If you want your plumbing to function properly, quit smoking.
Ditch Your Cigs (And Your Toilet Paper)
If you need assistance starting the fudge shuttle, we have dozens of healthier solutions than lighting up a cigarette, packing a dip, or puffing your vape pen. If you’ve convinced yourself that the nic-shits are your only path to a clear colon, rest assured there are better ways.
We get it: quitting a nicotine habit can be insanely hard. But you know what’s easy AF to quit? Toilet paper. We’ve been helping DUDES ditch sandpaper for almost a decade and we aren’t slowing down any time soon.
Best of all, there aren’t any withdrawal symptoms when you quit TP for DUDE Wipes. Just maximum freshness 24/7.