Everyone, at some point in their lives, has wondered what healthy poop looks like. It’s a question that is rarely discussed, but it’s important to understand the answer. After all, our poop can be an indicator of our general health – it may tell us if something isn’t quite right with our bodies. That’s why we should all strive to recognize what’s normal when it comes to our bowel movements. In this blog post, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide to recognizing healthy poop so that you can become aware of any signs of trouble sooner rather than later.
How Healthy Poop Looks Like
Healthy poop is typically any shade of brown, from light to dark. This is due to the presence of a pigment called bilirubin, produced by the breakdown of red blood cells in the liver and released through bile.
The Shape of Your Poo
Healthy poop should be long and large enough to pass easily without too much effort. The shape of your stool can vary from person to person, but it should generally be formed and well-formed. If your stool is hard, dry, and lumpy, you may have constipation.
The size of your poop should be consistent and easy to pass. A healthy poo usually ranges from one to two inches in diameter and up to eight inches in length. Anything smaller than one inch in diameter or longer than eight inches may indicate a health problem.
Healthy poop should be soft and not too hard to pass. If your stool is watery, it may indicate diarrhea or a more serious health issue. On the other hand, if your stool is too hard and lumpy, it could be a sign of constipation.
Time You Spend in the Bathroom
For most people, a healthy poop should take no more than 15 minutes in the bathroom. Anything longer than that may indicate you are straining too hard or having trouble passing your stool.
How Frequently You Poop
On average, most people should pass stool once or thrice a day. Anything more than that can be an indication of something out of the ordinary going on with your body.
The Bristol Stool Scale
The Bristol Stool Scale is a tool that can help you identify the consistency of your stool. It uses a numerical scale ranging from 1-7 to help you identify the health of your stool.
Type 1: Separate Hard Lumps
Type 1 on the Bristol Stool Scale is characterized by separate hard lumps that may be difficult to pass. This type of stool indicates constipation., and several factors, including dehydration or inadequate fiber intake, could cause it.
Type 2: Lumpy and Sausage Like
Type 2 on the Bristol Stool Scale is described as lumpy and sausage-like. This type of stool indicates that you may be mildly constipated and could benefit from an increase in dietary fiber or fluids.
Type 3: A Sausage Shape with Cracks in the Surface
Type 3 on the Bristol Stool Scale is described as a sausage shape with cracks on its surface. This type of stool is generally considered healthy and indicates that your body is functioning as it should.
Type 4: Smooth Soft Sausage or Snake
A stool classified as Type 4 on the Bristol Stool Scale has a smooth, soft texture and a shape that resembles a sausage or a snake. This is typically considered a sign of good health, indicating that your body is operating normally.
Type 5: Soft Blobs with Clear-Cut Edges
Type 5 on the Bristol Stool Scale is classified as soft blobs with clear-cut edges. This type of stool indicates that you are likely not getting enough fiber or fluids. Increasing your intake of both can help improve your digestive health.
Type 6: Mushy Consistency with Ragged Edges
Type 6 on the Bristol Stool Scale is described as a mushy consistency with ragged edges. This type of stool indicates that you may have food sensitivity or intolerance, and you may need to tweak your diet accordingly.
Type 7: Liquid Consistency with No Solid Pieces
Type 7 on the Bristol Stool Scale is described as having a liquid consistency with no solid pieces. This type of stool indicates that you may have a bacterial infection, viral infection, or some kind of digestive disorder. If you are experiencing this type of stool for an extended period of time, it is best to consult a doctor.
What Poop’s Color Says About Your Body
The color of your poop can also be indicative of your digestive health. Healthy stool is generally a shade of brown, although other colors such as yellow, green, or even black can also be normal. Here are some of the most common colors and what they mean:
Black stool may be caused by consuming licorice, taking iron supplements, or using medications containing bismuth, such as Pepto-Bismol. It could also be a sign of internal bleeding in the upper gastrointestinal tract.
Green poop can indicate that your food is moving too quickly through your digestive tract or that you are consuming large amounts of leafy green vegetables. It can also indicate an infection such as salmonella or E. coli.
Pale, White, or Clay-Colored Poop
The pale, white, or clay-colored stool can be a sign of gallbladder dysfunction or an obstruction in the bile ducts. It can also indicate a lack of bile in the stool, often caused by liver disease or gallbladder removal.
Bright Red Poop
If your poop is bright red, it can indicate bleeding in the lower digestive tract. It may also be caused by consuming large amounts of beets, tomatoes, or other red foods. In any case, it is essential to consult a doctor if you are experiencing this type of stool.
The yellowish tint of your stool can be caused by consuming large amounts of carrots, squash, or sweet potatoes. It could also indicate a problem with your pancreas or gallbladder, so it is important to speak with a doctor if you are experiencing this type of stool.
When to Visit Your Doctor
In any case, if you are experiencing changes in the frequency, texture, or color of your poop for an extended period, it is best to consult a doctor.
Your doctor can help you determine the underlying cause and provide guidance on how to regain digestive health. They may also recommend additional tests such as blood work or imaging scans if they suspect something more serious.
Regardless, it is important to stay informed about changes in your body and talk to a doctor when necessary. Doing so can help ensure that you are on the right track for optimal digestive health.
Tips to Make Your Stool Health
There are some steps you can take to make sure your stool is healthy and regular:
Drinking plenty of water and consuming other fluids, such as herbal teas, can help keep your stool regular.
Keep Healthy Diet
Eating a balanced diet rich in fiber from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help promote healthy digestion.
Regular physical activity can help improve your digestion and regularity of your stool.
Take Specialized Supplements
Certain supplements, such as probiotics, can help improve your digestive health. It is best to speak to a doctor before starting any new supplements.
Stress can affect your digestion, so it is important to practice relaxation techniques when possible.
Your stool can indicate a lot about your digestive health. If you are experiencing changes in the frequency, texture, or color of your poop for an extended period of time, it is best to consult a doctor. Staying hydrated, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and reducing stress can also help promote healthy digestion. By staying informed and speaking to a doctor when needed, you can ensure that your digestive health is on the right track.
The content writer on Choice Senior Life