Are you an infomercial junkie? Then you may already be doing things right and using a Squatty Potty ($33, squattypotty.com) to raise your legs while you’re on the porcelain throne. Research has shown that sitting with a tighter angle between your thigh and your pelvis (a.k.a. a squatting position) is a better way to relieve yourself, says Patricia Raymond, M.D., a gastroenterologist in Virginia Beach, Virginia. “That change in the angle helps to give people a better pelvic floor push,” she says. You don’t have to spring for some expensive gadget—a regular footstool or a stack of books works just as well.

Also, hate to break it to you, but bathroom time is not your chance to catch up on all your unread emails. “The important thing is not to be sitting on the commode for long periods of time,” says Fisher. This can actually increase your risk of hemorrhoids or make existing ones worse.