Let’s talk poop. Whether you’re one of those women who poops floral arrangements, or if you claim that you don’t even poop at all (By the way, if you are one of the small percentage who denies ever dropping deuces, the jig is up. We all know you do it. You also burp, shave your arm pits, and probably pick your nose in the car when you THINK nobody’s watching), pooping is a part of life.
As the popular children’s book clearly states, everybody poops. But there are not nearly as many of us who talk about it candidly.
It’s not that uncommon for people to make a poopie that’s as green as the uniform of the Lucky Charms Leprechaun, and then simply keep quiet. They’re hoping it just passes (I couldn’t resist) with time.
Now, more often than not, it’s something you consumed, however, at times when the “chocolate hostage” you’re releasing isn’t brown, there could be a problem.
So, if you’ve ever had the rainbow shooting out of your badunkadonk, but you aren’t a pot of gold, read the dumpster directory below to see what the colors might be trying to tell you.
Red (Ranges from bright red to a dark maroon)
If you have ever chowed down on a bunch of beets, well then, you know it’s just the red vegetable paying his regards.
That also goes for any other fruit or veggie that’s a lovely hue of red, those red powdery drink mixes such as Crystal Light, red Jello, or anything else that has a lot of red artificial coloring added to it.
When beets did not enter your mouth, and you’re pretty sure that’s blood on your toilet paper or in the toity, don’t worry your purdy little pooping self about it.
There are several common causes for rectal bleeding (any blood that travels through the rectum and comes out your anus) such as hemorrhoids, constipation, or a small tear in the ole butthole.
When to See the Doctor
If rectal bleeding is bright red, it’s probably coming from the lower intestine. The issue causing it will usually heal on its own, but seeing a doctor to rule out anything more serious, is not a bad idea.
Blood that is a dark maroon and/or moderate to severe (more than a couple tablespoons) is not to be taken lightly. If you are also nauseous, vomiting blood, dizzy, lightheaded and/or weak from the possible loss of blood, or abdominal pain, which might be the reason for the bleeding, get medical attention right away.
Some other problems that could be related to rectal bleeding range from Crohn’s disease and colon polyps (benign growths that develop on the colon’s lining), to cancer.
Better to be safe than sorry. Go to the stinkin’ doctor.
In some Indian cultures, the color orange symbolizes “courage.” And if you poop out an orange dootie, I believe you’re damn near ninja status.
Fortunately, many times orange poops are not cause for concern. If you’ve been obsessed with foods that have natural or artificial coloring (e.g. carrots, sweet potatoes, orange drink mixes, etc.) recently, it could very likely be the cause of your orange oopsie.
“Supplements and medications that can cause orange-colored stool include those containing beta-carotene (sometimes found in Vitamin A) and aluminum hydroxide (which can be found in antacids),” Irritable Bowel Disorder (IBD) expert, Amber J. Tresca, explains.
Unsuspecting foods such as cilantro, spinach and kale, can also turn your poo the color of a prison uniform.
When to See the Doctor
If you poop orange and suffer from Crohn’s, a disease that causes inflammation to the digestive tract, and you had surgery to remove part of the small intestines, there’s a chance you could have Short Bowel Syndrome.
This is a disorder of the small intestine, where it cannot absorb nutrients, thus leaving you malnourished. If you have diarrhea, feel weak, you’re tired all the time, and/or notice your legs swelling, get your doctor on the phone.
“Is that a banana that came out of your butt, or you just happy to see me?”
Actually, both are wrong.
It’s not a banana, and no, that person is not happy. I’d say they’re pretty darn anxious.
That’s right. If you are completely stressed out, don’t be surprised if you’re poo-ing little balls of sunshine.
It’s no secret that tummy troubles tend to happen to many people who suffer from stress and anxiety.
When Bilirubin (a chemical that your liver makes, and what gives urine it’s color) and undigested fat go through your system too quickly, it doesn’t have the opportunity to change into its normal brown color.
Therefore, your poo has a higher chance of being a lovely shade of yellow.
But how does anxiety cause your food to haul booty through your system, and literally alter the color of your stool?
Well, it could be for a few different reasons. One of which “is the distribution of fluids during anxiety and the activation of the fight or flight response,” states a Calm Clinic article.
Another possibility is the way stress effects your hormone balance as well as your metabolism, which could cause your intestines to go a little cra-cra.
Also, research suggests that the part of your brain that tells your digestion what to do, actually slows down, “so that mental resources can be used elsewhere.”
When to See the Doctor
If your poop is yellow, and you are having pain in the upper right abdomen, a fever, you’re feeling nauseous, your skin is yellowish and/or your eyes resemble a warewolf’s, get to the doctor.
These are some of the symptoms for gallstones, hepatitis, or worst case scenario, cirrhosis. The latter two being diseases of the liver.
This leads me to bile salts, produced in the liver, then stored in the gallbladder, and what creates the brown in your boo boo. When bile salts aren’t getting through because the bile ducts are blocked, gallstones could be to blame.
But if liver disease is the reason for yellow poop, that means the organ isn’t producing enough or any bile salts at all.
In addition to liver disease, diseases of the pancreas can be responsible for turning poop yellow when “delivery of digestive enzymes to the intestines” are reduced, states a Health Grades article.
These enzymes break down the fat, but without the enzymes being able to do what they do, extra fat ends up in the caca, hence the color yellow.
A few pancreatic diseases include: cystic fibrosis, chronic pancreatitis, an inflamed pancreas that’s often related to alcoholism, and pancreatic cancer.
When you see the color green in your toilet bowl, don’t jump to conclusions. It’s often for the same un-alarming reason your poop turns yellow; food is being digested at what the movie Space Balls called, “Ludacris Speed.”
Or it might happen when you eat a buttload of leafy greens. A green poo could also mean you’re taking an iron supplement or chomping on foods that are high in iron.
When to Call the Doctor
Pooping something that looks as though it came out of the Incredible Hulk, doesn’t necessarily mean you’re super human. Sometimes it’s a warning sign.
If you seem to always have bloating, an upset stomach, along with either diarrhea, constipation, or you go back and forth between the two, Irritable Bowel Syndrome could be the issue. IBS is a condition that can give you diarrhea, constipation, or will go back and forth between the two. The autoimmune condition, celiac disease (when your body doesn’t tolerate gluten) is another possibility.
If you have any of the above symptoms as well as a fever, fatigue, or you notice some blood coming from your rectum, ask your doctor about testing for Crohn’s disease, which happens to be another autoimmune disorder.
I’ve yet to have the pleasure of being introduced to the blue poo, however, there are several ways people can experience this kind of bowel movement.
The website Poop Colors (it’s seriously called “Poop Colors” which I think is just about the coolest website name to date) says the main reason for dropping a blue number two, is due to the extreme love for any food or beverage that’s artificially colored. It can range from blue alcohol (e.g. Blue Curaçao), to grape flavored goodies such as Kool-Aid.
In order to poo blue, I figure you’d have to down a lot of that stuff. I say that because I have hoovered almost an entire box of grape Outshine Frozen Juice Bars in one day and my body did not develop a case of the “blues.”
By the way, this is my latest obsession. If you’ve never tried Outshine Bars, you must add them to your grocery list ASAP. They are very low in calories as far as desserts go, and simply amazing.
The heaven-cicles come in a bunch of flavors like cherry (which is only seasonal, so of course it would have to be my personal favorite…boooo) lime, pomegranate, coconut as well as many others.
And no, I’m not getting paid for saying that. 😉 I receive jack squat and I still feel the need to share.
Ok, back to poop.
If you are currently on a diet high in fat and protein, don’t stress yourself out if your doo-doo is blue-blue. It’s nothing more than an “excessive bacterial action on the food items during the process of digestion.”
You may also experience horrible gas that could knock a 3 year old over. I’m sure anyone who has been on the Adkins Diet can attest to this.
Another food-related way to get a “bloop” (that’s my made-up word for blue poop if you were wondering), is to motorboat a few pints of blueberries.
No explanation necessary other than lots and lots of blueberries = bloop.
Now, if you have recently been treated for radiation, thallium or celsium poisoning, you’ve probably been popping Prussian Blue capsules (a chemical that is really a dye) like candy.
And that’d be why you thought you just gave birth to a Blue Power Ranger baby.
Speaking of babies (and one terrific segue way), if your baby is accenting their diaper with blue, it’s more than likely the formula’s fault and no need to panic. Infants are famous for pooping the whole color palette.
In addition to babies, young children could poop blue if they decide to feast on blue or purple crayons. Play-dough also does the trick and neither one is known to hurt the kiddo’s system.
When to Call the Doctor
Now, when your poop is bluish-green in color, it could be the same culprits I mentioned in the green section: IBS, celiac or Crohn’s disease. If you are experiencing any of the other symptoms I mentioned in the previous section, seeing a physician for further testing should be in your future.
And even though crayons and Play-dough are pretty harmless, if your child eats a four-course meal of colored glitter, you may want to pay the ER a visit.
Not to freak you out, but glitter is basically shards of metal and can do some damage if it’s consumed.
The black crap. (Doesn’t that sound like the name of a heavy metal band? “And now, I’d like to present to you…The Black Crap.”) Blackies in the bowl don’t always mean there’s any thing wrong. Like with most colors, it can be associated with something you ate, drank, or medicated yourself with.
Are you taking an iron supplement, bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto Bismol), or chowing down on either black licorice or blueberries? Fear not, dear friend. It’s a safe bet one of those is the cause of your black boo boo.
When to Call the Doctor
Ok, say you haven’t gone anywhere near the items I just pointed out, here’s the scoop on the black poop.
Pooping black could mean there’s bleeding in the stomach, esophagus, or in the first part of the small intestine. These make up the upper GI tract.
If you notice your poop looks kinda like tar and the smell could practically knock a person over, head on over to the doctor’s office. It’s potentially a red flag for something along the lines of an ulcer, gastritis (when the lining of the stomach is inflamed) or even more serious, a tumor.
There’s nothing normal about a white poop. Unless it’s petrified.
As I touched upon in the yellow section, bile is responsible for turning poop brown. A white poo tells us there’s either an obstructed duct where the bile is trying to get through, or that the liver is not producing enough or zero bile. Neither case means good news.
So, if you look in the toilet afterwards, and you can’t tell the difference between your poop and the toilet paper, may I suggest a quick drive to the hospital?
If you’re thinking what I’m thinking, then pooping silver sounds pretty flippin’ awesome. But pooping out something that looks like a precious metal…sorry to say, you didn’t strike it rich, and not to poo-poo on your parade even more, you better get to a doctor.
A blockage in your bile ducts as well as upper intestinal bleeding are one of the main reasons you think your poop came out of a mine and not your butt.
According to Andrew Tarantola with Gizmodo, seeing silver is “basically white stool caused by a lack of bile mixes with gastrointestinal blood, which stains it the same color as aluminum spray paint.”
Folks, if this post hasn’t been gross enough for you, well, the post ain’t over yet.
Did you know the holes in your face aren’t the only places mucus comes out of? Yup, there’s one more hole that can get snotty and I bet we can all guess where that is.
Mucus in the digestive tract is normal. It keeps things gliding along according to plan. And a little bit of mucus in your poop is no big whoop, but when there’s a pretty good amount of it in there, there might be something going on.
When to Call the Doctor
Mucus-y poo could indicate bowel inflammation. Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis are both conditions where mucus is likely.
Diarrhea, abdominal cramping, bloating, as well as the always fun, constipation are also seen. As I brought up in the green section, IBS can produce similar symptoms, but it doesn’t actually inflame the insides of your backside like the first two.
Gastrointestinal infections are also likely to give your poop the mucus touch, right along with cramping and a case of the trots.
Additionally, tears in your booty hole, rectal ulcers or rectal fistulas (these are what the website, Health Grades defines as, “abnormal holes or tubes between organs and tissues”) could cause mucus to grace your poo’s presence.
To sum it up, if you see a substantial amount of mucus in your stool for any length of time, schedule an appointment with your doc.
I know I’ve already said what I’m about to tell you, but it bears repeating. If you poop a weird color, remember, it’s almost always something you consumed.
I emphasize this because I tend to play Dr. Google and before you know it, I’ve convinced myself that my symptoms obviously point to a deadly disease, and I only have days, if not hours to live.
Of course, it turns out to be a zit as opposed to the extremely poisonous spider bite I swore it was.
Happy crapping everyone!
Let’s connect, lovely people:-)
Unity Point Clinic. “Blood in Stool: What Does It Mean?” Web. Unity Point Clinic. N.p., 11 Aug. 2014. 18 Sept. 2015. <https://www.unitypoint.org/clinics/article.aspx?id=827b5c67-02b1-4da6-a4c8-6d309fb2f16a>.
Pomeroy, Ross. “Your S%$@ Can Be Silver, Newborns Don’t Poop, and Other Things You Didn’t Know About Feces | Real Clear Science.” Weblog post. Real Clear Science. N.p., 9 May 2013. Web. 18 Sept. 2015. <http://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2013/05/your-s-can-be-silver-and-other-things-you-didnt-know-about-feces.html>.
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