May 16, 2024

Gut Feelings: For 68%, Relationship Isn't Serious Until Couples Share Digestive Woes, New Survey Finds

2024 Intestinal Intimacy survey explores the connection between digestive issues and relationship status

BRIDGEWATER, N.J., May 16, 2024 - The 2024 Intestinal Intimacy survey, conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of IBgard®, an herbal alternative for abdominal comfort†, takes a personal look at how digestive issues can impact relationships. The survey found that 68% of respondents feel a romantic relationship is only serious if you're comfortable talking about bathroom behavior, and 51% believe you should wait three months or longer before sharing details of digestive habits. When digestive issues hit, 65% of Americans polled are turning to dietary supplements to help manage their occasional symptoms. The Intestinal Intimacy survey reveals a myriad of other ways people keep their bowel-related woes to themselves.

"Having occasional digestive flare ups is very human and very relatable to many Americans, but they shouldn't get in the way of interpersonal relationships with partners, friends, and colleagues," said Wendi LeBrett, MD, board-certified physician, gastroenterology fellow, and IBgard spokesperson. "For adults who experience occasional cramping, diarrhea, bloating, constipation, and gas, I suggest keeping a food journal to identify the foods and beverages that contribute to these occasional issues, and speaking to your doctor about adding an ultra-purified peppermint oil, like IBgard, that provides daily relief."  

IBgard® 2024 Intestinal Intimacy Survey Highlights

  • Dealbreaker in the bedroom? Digestive woes can be a dealbreaker in the bedroom, with 80% of respondents saying they would be likely to turn down sex if they were having digestive issues, and nearly half (48%) very likely to say "not now."
    • There's also a gender divide, with 59% of women very likely to turn down sex due to digestive issues, compared to 37% of men.
    • Almost a third (30%) of those married or in relationships have lost interest in sex because their partner passed gas in front of them.
  • When tummy troubles strike: Digestive problems can move people to modify or rethink their plans. More than 4 in 5 (82%) have had to make accommodations due to digestive issues.
    • Nearly a quarter (24%) have stayed within 10 feet of a bathroom for most of the day to dash for its door, and more than 1 in 10 (12%) had a digestive supplement ordered through a delivery service.
    • Almost a third (31%) rethought their outfit in favor of something more comfortable, 28% left a social gathering early, and 29% cancelled their plans, including 5% who called off an entire vacation.
    • Those younger than 35 (90%) are much more likely to adjust plans than those who are 35 or older (79%).
  • At the office: Digestive dilemmas and close working conditions don't mix! A majority (58%) of those who work are likely to go home sick if they begin to feel gassy while working in person, rather than risk embarrassing themselves in front of their colleagues.


The IBgard® 2024 Intestinal Intimacy survey was conducted by Wakefield Research among 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults ages 18+, between April 18 and April 23, 2024, using an email invitation and an online survey. The data has been weighted to ensure an accurate representation of nationally representative U.S. adults ages 18+.

To learn about IBgard® peppermint oil supplements, please visit


About IBgard®

IBgard®, a Nestlé Health Science brand, has been recognized as the number one gastroenterologist recommended digestive health brand year over year.ǂ Made with peppermint oil, IBgard is clinically studied to help manage a combination of occasional symptoms, including cramping, diarrhea, bloating, bowel urgency, constipation, and gas. IBgard is safe for daily use, so you won't miss a moment due to tummy troubles. For more information about IBgard, visit and follow @YourGard on Facebook and Instagram.

†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
ǂAmong gastroenterologists who recommended peppermint oil for abdominal comfort. June 2023.


Media Contact

Andrea Martin
IBgard®, a Nestlé Health Science brand