Here’s What Your Stool Can Tell You About Your Health
The stool has the ability to signal if there is something wrong with your body. In case if there is certain unusual thing about your stool and if it happened only once, you definitely should not worry about it. Otherwise, it that ‘strange thing’ is persistent you should do laboratory tests and take appropriate medications.
How do normal stools look like?
It is considered that features of normal stool are brown color, medium size and soft 4-8 inches long. In addition to this, you should not have any trouble while releasing the feces. Also, if there is mild deviation you should not be terrified.
Many of the changes in stool often are attributed to different types of foods or lifestyle habits, thus you should not panic. For example, beetroots can color the stool while the fatty foods can make it soft, foul-smelling.
You should check the Bristol stool chart and determine if something wrong is happening with your body or more precise the intestines. The type 3, 4 and 5 are considered as normal ones. It is interesting that the type 4 is the King of poops.
It is important to observe your stool very carefully. See if there are some changes in its color, shape, smell, consistency or buoyancy.
In case if the redness is not associated with the last meals you consumed, it may be a sign of internal bleeding in the lower gut area. Even though colon cancer is really big concern for many people, the bloody stool also may be symptom of hemorrhoids and diverticulitis.
It is fact that bile is green. If the poop travels very quickly through the intestines, the bile didn’t hade enough time to turn brown and that causes the green color of the poop. Another reason for green poop are antibiotics and iron supplements. Also, the stool may become green if you consume big amounts of chlorophyll-rich leafy greens and take food supplements, such as spirulina, chlorella and wheatgrass. However, it is possible that you may suffer from Crohn’s disease, irritable Bowel Syndrome or celiac disease.
In most cases infection is the reason for yellowish poop. At some cases it is a sign of gallbladder dysfunction, or in other words, there is poor bile output and excess fats.
The reason of pare, clay-like or white stool may be bile duct obstruction or insufficient bile. Some of the causes also may be gallstones, hepatitis, bacterial infection, pancreatitis, cirrhosis and cancer. Moreover, x-ray with barium may have impact to the color.
Dark green or black feces may be caused by bleeding in the upper gut area. Moreover, it is possible that it is result of iron consumption or foods like dark veggies and too much meat.
This type of poop in most cases is caused by obstructions in the lower bowel or an external pressure on the colon, most often from an abnormal growth. In order to exclude the possibility of colon cancer in such condition, colonoscopy is required.
Small and hard stool
This usually is sign of constipation, and is caused by unhealthy, low-fiber diet. It is recommended to consume more foods that are rich in fiber and exercise regularly.
Soft stool that clings to the toilet
May be caused by body’s inability to absorb oils which is condition accompanied with oil droplets that float in the toilet. You should check your pancreas.
Mucus in stool
Experts explain that is quite normal to have mucus in the stool. However, in case you notice that there is too much of it, you probably are dealing with inflammation, Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.
Leukocytes (white blood cells) in stool
If there is digestive tract disorder, leukocytes are present in the stool.
Even though the poop doesn’t smell very pleasantly, in case if the bathroom stinks much longer after you have been there, it may be associated with the dietary habits or the time that has passed before the last time went to poop. The foul smell is usually is caused by certain medications or inflammation. The food malabsorption also makes the poop smelly. Our advice is to check if you have Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, or cystic fibrosis.
You should not worry about this. The amount of gas in the feces actually determines whether it will float or sink. However, it there is floating, foul-smelling and oily stool that may indicate that there is malabsorption of nutrients, especially if it is followed by weight loss.
You should check your stool much more often. Once you determine what is normal and usual for you, it will be much easier to spot any changes, differences and detect potential dangers.
How often should you visit the toilet?
First step is to determine what is normal for you. According to experts three trips to the toilet daily or three per one week are pretty normal. Still, there are numerous factors that have influence on the frequency of defecation, like dietary habits, travel, medication, hormonal fluctuations, sleep patterns, exercising, illness, surgery, childbirth, stress and so on.
Pay attention on the strain that “pooping process” requires. For instance, the normal defecation should last the same as urinating and passing gas. In case if it requires too much effort, something is wrong.
How to improve your bowel movement?
Healthy and balanced diet
It is advisable to eat more fruits and vegetables, because they contain enough fiber. Moreover, psyllium and freshly ground flax seed will provide you more fiber.
On the other hand, you should avoid processed food and food that are abundant in sugar, artificial sweeteners or chemical additives.
Balance your gut flora
Include more probiotic products to your diet, like sauerkraut, pickles, kombucha and kefir. On that way you will replenish the good bacteria in your gut after an antibiotic therapy. If the problem is not solved with consummation of probiotic food, you should consider the option to supplement with probiotics.
Drink plenty of water
Visit the gym more often or find exercises are most appropriate for you and perform them at home.
Take a look at the video below and see what your poop tells you about your health: