Healthy Elimination

Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo Interested in a little potty talk? It’s a topic certainly worth discussing but in order for you to have an understanding of what we’re talking about we’re going to have to get a little graphic… get your mind out of the gutter! This is a serious health topic we’ve got for you. We’re talking about the “perfect poop” and we know you want it. We preach a lot about healthy eating but if you don’t know this already, you should; what comes out is equally important as what goes in. Maybe you’re a little squeamish and close your eyes to your daily duties but we’re here to suggest that you stop turning a blind eye. Furthermore, you may want to develop a relationship with it. Get to know it. Maybe study and analyze it a bit because, it defines you! It knows what you are, who you are, what you eat, how you digest your food and how healthy you are or aren’t. It’s like your fortune teller because it can predict your future. Quite frankly, now is the time to own it! Ready to get down and dirty?

The four “Ss” of … elimination.

SIZE

Bigger in this case does not mean better! If your diet is low in fiber, and depending on the length of time the stool sits in the colon, you may be internally formulating something that might resemble a football. Feeling like you’re pushing the baby out your bum is a sign that your diet is low in fiber and you’re colon is dehydrated. Small isn’t best either. Tiny little pellets is a sure sign you’ve got the same dietary regrets. Constipation usually goes hand in hand with these rodent-sized poops. Want to recognize a healthy one but have been afraid to ask? One that is many, many inches long, has bulk but is without the hardness makes for a smooth transition from body to bowl.

SHAPE

Shape really is an important measure. There are many factors that go into shape because there are several varietal patterns. The perfect poop is one that is smooth in texture and soft “to the touch.” Anything that is lumpy, dry with cracks, blobs, fluffy pieces with jagged edges, pencil thin or watery (no shape) are all signs that there is either a medical condition or your diet is just a touch off. Generally, when the stool is anything other than long, slightly bulky, soft and easy to eliminate, discomfort in the abdomen, possibly cramping from time-to-time, gas and bloating and intermittent bouts of constipation and/or diarrhea is likely to occur. For more information regarding shape see the Bristol stool chart below.

SHADE

The color shade is equally important as all the other factors because color can recognize more serious conditions you might be faced with.

  • Green stool means rapid transit where bile has not had enough time to be broken down
  • Yellow stool can be a result of a faulty gallbladder
  • White usually means fat malabsorption as with pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer. Do not confuse mucous laden waste as a white stool. You’ll freak yourself out.
  • Black stool could be a sign of internal bleeding from the upper GI tract but it can also mean a diet heavy in animal protein or iron therapy
  • Light clay-colored stool is characteristic of liver disease and decreased bile output or be caused by the consumption of antacids.

SMELL

What contributes to the type of smell is predicated upon what you ate, how long the food has been sitting here, medications or the possibility of infection. An imbalance of gut flora and undigested fat can also play a part in an malodorous stool. The bad odor originates from the fermentation process from the bacteria in the large intestine which produces foul-smelling sulfide compounds…in other words, rotten eggs. You know what I mean…

Want to know what you can do to eliminate this problem? Well, here are some helpful tips to make it so your “sh*t don’t stink”.  Check out my blog on optimal digestion.

Bristol Poop Chart
Bristol Stool Chart

Written by Laura Bushey, MAT, Certified Health Educator and Personal Holistic Chef with Kitchen of Life. To find out more helpful tips find us at: www.facebook.com/kitchenoflifewellness.

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