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Your poop can say a LOT about your digestive health. Here’s why

Published on:6 October 2021, 13:18pm IST
It might sound extremely weird but it’s important to notice your poop. That’s because it could give out several tell-tale signs about your health.
Geetika Sachdev
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Poop
Your poop serves as a window to your health. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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The very mention of poop makes you feel gross, isn’t it? Of course! We’ve all cracked jokes around it, but what if we tell you that your poop offers a window into your digestive health. So, if you really want to find out what’s going on internally, maybe it’s time to take a long, hard look at your poop (however, weird it may sound).

Are you ready to identify some signs? But before that, let’s understand what poop is made up of (ewww).

digestion
Got digestion problems? Your poop may tell you why. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
What does poop have?

Oh, we know this sounds utterly disgusting! Your poop is made up of 75% water, while the rest contains fibre, dead and live bacteria, other cells and mucus. Foods that contain soluble fibre, including beans and nuts, are broken down during digestion, which then forms a gel-like substance.

On the other hand, foods that contain insoluble fibre such as corn, oat bran and carrots are not as easily digested by your body. They could show up in your poop as it is (so, don’t get surprised). Find out about your health by looking at your poop!

1. If your poop is stinky, you have toxins in the body
Unable to bear the smell of your poop? Is it too stinky? Well, there’s a high chance that you have toxins in your body. Sometimes, foul-smelling stools also occur due to the foods you eat, and the bacteria present in your colon. But at times, it could also indicate a serious health issue. Let your doctor know, in case you encounter this issue, every now and then. Diarrhea, bloating, or flatulence may occur with foul-smelling stools.

poop
There is a reason why your poop smells so much. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Your poop should always sink
We know you are surprised; so are we! When you poop, try and notice if it floats or sinks. Floating poop almost always means high fat content, which is also a sign of malabsorption. In this case, your body can’t absorb enough fat and other nutrients, when you ingest food. It could also be linked to celiac disease or pancreatitis.

3. Diarrhea is a sign of infection
If loosies are troubling you and making you go to the loo every now and then, you could be suffering from a digestive infection. Digestion can take anywhere between 24-72 hours, because food travels through the esophagus to your stomach, your small intestine to large intestine, and then is released through the anus.

In case of diarrhea, your poop passes quickly through the large intestine, where most of the water content is absorbed. It could also be a sign of food allergies or intolerances.

4. Poop that is hard and shaped like pebbles indicates constipation
Have you spent hours in the loo, trying to poop? The struggle is real, we say! Poop that is hard and shaped like pebbles indicates constipation. The large intestine is responsible for concentrating waste by absorbing water. In case your large intestine doesn’t have proper muscle contractions, waste that’s left in the colon becomes more concentrated, and that means harder stool.

5. Oily poop indicates that your body is unable to digest fat
Oily or greasy poop? If yes, then it is a sign that your body is unable to digest fat properly. The texture change could also be due to an infection, or malabsorption caused by celiac disease or issues with the pancreas. If you find any such odd signs, make sure to check with your doctor.

Geetika Sachdev Geetika Sachdev

An independent writer and journalist, Geetika loves sharp and fresh humour, just like her coffee! If not writing, you'll find her cafe-hopping and raiding the best book stores in town.