What, if any differences are there between how women’s and men’s digestive systems work?
None that I can think of, unless this is meant to be served up as a straight line…
I have been told that women do not fart.
More seriously, American companies seem to market some number of digestive products specifically toward women, which might give the impression that there are some differences. Irritable bowel drugs ads seem to focus on women, and there is that brand of yogurt that touts its ability to keep one regular, with Jamie Lee Curtis talking to various women.
Other products even envision women as the guardians of men’s bowels. There is a laxative whose commercials feature a woman armed with several bottles asking other women in some sort of crowd (like an airplane or a theater) whether their husbands need this product, and several women point smugly to their understandably cringing male companions.
They basically work the same, but there are some differences. According to some random sites I googled (how’s that for a technical cite…) a woman’s colon is slightly longer. and tends to wrap around in a more convoluted path and drop lower into the pelvis due to a woman’s pelvis being wider and more rounded, where a man’s pelvis is narrow. Men also don’t have a uterus in the way.
The higher levels of testosterone in men create a stronger abdominal wall. One site gave this as the reason why women feel bloated more easily than men do.
Estrogen and progesterone also affect how much water you retain, which affects how quickly things move through your intestines.
Estrogen also makes the gallbladder empty more slowly, which increases the risk of gallstones significantly in women.
Women can have their sphincters damaged during childbirth. Men don’t have to worry about this.
Progesterone is constipating. That’s what’s high in the latter two weeks of the menstrual cycle. Its sudden drop heralds the onset of menses–and other things.
Women have less dehydrogenase, an enzyme that destroys alcohol in their stomach, so they get a bigger dose from each drink.
Women’s digestive organs are generally larger than mens’. The stomach, kidneys, liver and appendix are all larger relative to body weight (presumably to support fetal development).