So, should we all be hiking up our knees and giving squatting a go?
While Wald isn’t exactly shouting from the rooftops about the awesomeness of squatting, he allows that, “theoretically it could make defecation easier,” especially if you have weak abdominal muscles.
He also points out that less straining to go means less strain on your heart, which would be good for older people who are at risk for stroke or heart attack. He adds, “With repeated straining over many years you may weaken the pelvic floor, which can lead to bowel control problems later in life, and, in women, to the pelvic floor dropping.”
Research shows that squatting can relieve hemorrhoid symptoms. But if anyone tries to tell you that sitting increases your risk of colon cancer, that’s not true.
Note that if you do want to switch to squatting, you should probably go ahead and invest in something to put your feet on. (Assuming you don't happen to have an Eastern toilet installed in your home.) The only other option would be perching on the seat, and that's just weird and dangerous.