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Does Adding Olive Oil to Your Coffee Help You Poop?

These new Starbucks coffees have people running to the bathroom.

By Danielle DeAngelis, EatingWell


You may have heard all about the Starbucks line of olive oil-infused coffees starting to make ground in the U.S. From cold brew to shaken espressos, the new infused flavors are an homage to the Italian custom of taking a spoonful of olive oil every day.

Recently, those who have tried these special beverages have been experiencing intense side effects. Across social media, people who ordered and sipped on the drinks have reported needing to run to the bathroom because of bowel problems, stomachaches and diarrhea.

So what is it about the olive oil-coffee combination that is making people poop? And is it actually helpful for people struggling with constipation? Read on to learn more about the new Starbucks coffees before you order.

a photo of a coffee cup and olive oil being poured into it

Does Olive Oil Help With Constipation?

First, you may already know that coffee helps you poop by itself. Research, such as a 2022 article published in Nutrients, shows that coffee directly triggers your colon and supports regular bowel movements, so that’s why you may feel the need to use the bathroom after finishing your mug.

Adding olive oil to your coffee can cause a greater reaction because olive oil can help relieve constipation, per a 2021 study published in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery. While olive oil’s laxative properties are mild, it shouldn’t surprise you that the need to poop increases when it’s paired with coffee.

The Starbucks olive oil drink line may have been going down more quickly than usual, but nothing should be concerning about these drinks. That said, try not to drink these beverages on an empty stomach. You might experience more stomach discomfort or a quicker urge to go when skipping breakfast.

The Bottom Line

Drinking one of the new Starbucks olive oil-infused coffee drinks—or adding a spoonful of olive oil to your own cup at home—may help you poop and can help relieve constipation. It may be best to have a meal while enjoying these coffee beverages to help avoid stomachaches. Talk to your health care provider or dietitian if you’re experiencing abnormal or severe side effects like diarrhea or vomiting.