What does your poo say about you


It’s not exactly dinner conversation, but your poo actually reveals quite a lot about what’s going on inside your body. So next time you go to the toilet, be sure to take a look so you can figure out whether you’re as healthy as you think you are.

What is poo?

The old saying what goes in must come out is true. Poo is made up of water, fibre, bile, dead bacteria, cholesterol and fats, protein, and cells that have been shed from inside your intestinal tract – all of this is collected along the way down the digestive tract from your mouth to your rear end.

What can you learn from your poo?

Disease:

The most important thing you can find out by looking at your stools is whether or not you have an Inflammatory bowel condition, from more serious conditions such as bowel cancer or Chron’s disease to haemmorhoids. Look out for blood on the outside of stools, on toilet paper after you wipe, or in the bottom of the toilet bowl. If you experience any of these, it’s definitely worth getting checked out.

Frequency:

Another indicator of whether you are normal or not is if you are ‘regular’. Normal frequency is anywhere from three times a week to three times a day.

Size and shape:

Ideally, your poo should be about the size and shape of a banana, and like Goldilocks - not too hard or too soft. The Bristol Stool Chart is a great attempt to classify human poo into seven categories – with numbers 3 or 4 considered to be the ‘perfect poo’.

Colour coding your poo

Normal poo is generally anywhere from that 70s favourite Mission Brown to a lighter bronze colour, but there are certain colours you should look out for.

Your poo gets its colour from bile, which mixes with what you’ve eaten during the digestive process and changes its colour from green to brown as it travels through to the colon. For most people, this usually takes about 18 to 36 hours.

Bright green poo indicates a quick passage through the bowel where the bile hasn’t had time to change to brown, as happens with diarrhoea.

Black poo may contain blood from your digestive tract, but can also be caused by iron tablets, licorice or blueberries.

Red poo may be from bleeding in your digestive tract, however beetroot also causes this ‘surprise’ in the bowl.

What to look out for?

Everyone should be looking for consistency – if your poo changes colour or consistency for more than a few days, and you’re experiencing other symptoms, it may be worth getting checked out. 

If you have any more questions, you can call us to book a FREE 15 minute chat with one of our Naturopaths to see how we can help you. Call now on (02) 4961 4075.

Yours in health

Peter Mullen


Have you been living with a health condition for years that hasn’t responded to conventional medicine effectively? Or are you simply not feeling your best?

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