Everybody poops – yes, even those beautiful celebrities. All creatures take in nutrients and eliminate what isn’t necessary for the body. While it may be an awkward topic to talk about, it’s a completely normal process.
What and how you eat affects your digestive system. Did you know that digestive health is directly connected to your immune system? 70% of the body’s immune system is contained in the digestive tract – 70%! So what does your poop say about your health? Let’s first look at color changes and then we’ll discuss floating vs. sinking poops.
Changes In The Color Of Your Poop
If your poop is clay-colored, very light brown, or yellow, these may be signs of:
- An infection in your gallbladder, liver, or pancreas
- Alcoholic hepatitis – inflammation in your liver caused by alcohol
- Blockage of bile ducts – inflammation or irritation blocks the flow of bile to the intestines.
Poop can become black if you consume certain foods, such as black licorice or blueberries, or if you’re taking an iron supplement. More seriously though, it can be a sign of ulcers, bleeding or tumors in your digestive tract.
Tiny bits of blood in your stool can be caused by constipation or hemorrhoids, but red poops are thought to be a more serious indicator of something not right “down there”. Potential causes include:
- Bleeding in the rectum
- Abnormal blood vessels
- Blood supply being cut off to parts of your digestive system
- Swelling in the lining of your stomach
- Food or foreign object being stuck in your digestive system
- Cancerous parts of your digestive system
Floating Poops vs. Sinking Poops
Now, what about if your poop sinks to the bottom of the toilet or you’ve had floating stool for months? What do these tell us about your health?
The next time you feel the urge to drop the kids off at the pool, listen for the sound of your poop as it hits the water. Healthy poop should sink because typically, the contents are denser than water.
Floating stools are typically a sign of high fat content, which can be a sign of malabsorption (a condition where you can’t absorb enough fat and nutrients from the food you’re eating). If your poop generally floats, please take the time to talk with your physician, as consistent floating poops are associated with celiac disease or chronic pancreatitis.
We hope this post helps shed some light on what your poop may be telling you! It always has a lot to say.