Is my poop normal?
Most of us have asked ourselves that at one time or another. When your poop isn’t right, it definitely indicates something isn’t quite right. Maybe you ate too much spicy food, are sick with a virus, or you could possibly have a digestive disease or other illness.
So, if you’re curious about whether your pooping habits are considered “normal” or not, then you are already thinking along the right path, since the health of your poop tells a lot about the health of your entire body.
Poop, in simplest terms, is the body’s natural way of expelling waste and toxins that it doesn’t need once it’s absorbed all of the usable nutrients from food.
The process of digestion- eating a food, the food traveling through your stomach and intestines and down to your colon, and then you pooping the digested waste from the food out- involves many aspects of your body including enzymes, hormones, blood flow, and more. So when just one of the involved organs or systems is off, your digestion really suffers- and that shows up in your poop of course!
What is a Normal Poop?
1. How many times per day should I poop?
The amount of bowl movements a day that someone should have varies from person to person, so there is not one specific number that is considered completely “normal”; however most experts agree that it’s important to go to the bathroom at least three or more times per week at a minimum.
Generally, going once or twice a day is considered normal. Going every other day is also somewhat normal, as long as you feel comfortable and are not experiencing pain in your abdomen. Above all else, you want to make sure things are pretty consistent from day to day; this shows you what is “normal” poop for your own body and clues you in to when something internally is off.
2. What should my poop look like?
When you do go to the bathroom, it’s ideal to have a poop that is all connected in one long, smooth “S” shape. Poops like this develop when you’re eating enough fiber and drinking plenty of hydrating water.
However a smooth poop that is thin or broken up into a few smaller poops is not something to be concerned about according to digestive experts, as long as this is “normal” for you and does not cause you any discomfort. The color of a normal poop should be a medium to dark brown.
Although it may sound unpleasant, your poop smelling is actually not a bad sign. Poop smells because of the toxins it is helping to draw out of your body and because of the bacteria involved in the gut lining. There is not any specific smell that is considered “normal”; again it’s just important to keep an eye on things being consistent and comfortable for you.
If you do notice a change in smell in your poop- from “not so great” to “very, very bad”- this could be a sign that something more serious is taking place within your gut. If the smell continues for several days, you may want to consult your doctor who can perform a colonoscopy if needed.
You may have heard of the The Bristol Stool Scale in the past, which was designed in the 1990’s to be a medical aid that classifies poop into one of seven categories. When physicians meet with patients and discuss their digestive health, they can use the Bristol scale to locate the patient’s typical poop and learn what may be causing a problem.
The idea behind designing the scale was to classify how poop looks depending on the time that it takes for the poop to form in the colon, or the poop’s “transit time”. If a poop is considered abnormal, it usually falls into categories 1-2 (which are signs of constipation and poop being held too long in the body) or categories 6-7 (which are signs of diarrhea and the poop moving too quickly through the body).
BRISTOL STOOL SCALE
According to The Bristol Stool Scale, the seven types of stool are:
- Type 1: Separate hard lumps, like nuts (hard to pass)
- Type 2: Sausage-shaped, but lumpy
- Type 3: Like a sausage but with cracks on its surface
- Type 4: Like a sausage or snake, smooth and soft
- Type 5: Soft blobs with clear cut edges (passed easily)
- Type 6: Fluffy pieces with ragged edges, a mushy stool
- Type 7: Watery, no solid pieces, entirely liquid
Types 1–2: indicate constipation
Types 3-5: considered to be ideal (especially 4), normal poops
Type 6-7: considered abnormal and indicate diarrhea
3. How long should a normal poop take?
A healthy poop doesn’t cause pain, break up into multiple little pieces, or take a very long time and lots of pushing to come out. It should feel pretty easy to produce a poop and you should feel like you’ve emptied your intestines.
What’s NOT Normal?
1. Going too often or not often enough:
Having trouble going to the bathroom more than a few times a week, or going too many times per day (more than 3) is considered by most experts to be abnormal. Poop should not be painful, cause you to bleed, or require a lot of pushing and effort on your part. If you have to push very hard to poop and notice blood, you are likely experiencing hemorrhoids. While these are usually not very serious and do not require medical attention, they can be painful.
2. Experiencing changes in your poop’s consistency:
If your poop is either overly watery or very hard and difficult to push out, this is a sign that things are not going well in your digestive tract. Diarrheaproduces overly soft or watery poops and can be dangerous if it persists because it dehydrates and weakens the body. (1) The causes of diarrhea vary, but often the reasons are dehydration, a viral stomach flu or infection, as a result of eating something with harmful parasites or bacteria, or even nerves.
Diarrhea can also be caused by certain medications or medical conditions like Gluten Sensitivity or Celiac Disease (a gluten allergy), lactose intolerance (a dairy food allergy), and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, or Leaky Gut. This is why its very important to see a physician if you experience diarrhea on an ongoing basis.
Constipation on the other hand is categorized by infrequent, usually painful poops that are caused by slow colonic transit or dysfunction in the pelvic floor. (2) Many people experience ongoing chronic constipation- in fact this is one of the most reported problems at doctor’s visits every year. Constipation is caused by many different factors depending on the individual, which we will go over in more detail in the next section.
3. If your poop’s color if off:
Experiencing poops that are black, green, gray, yellow or red in color can be a sign that something deeper is wrong. For example, black poops usually a sign that you may be internally bleeding, so if this persists for more than 2-3 poops, you will want to consult a physician.
Green colored poops usually mean that food is making its way through your digestive tract very quickly, which can be a sign that you are starting to experience diarrhea or have not been consuming enough fiber to slow the transition down within your digestive tract.
Red or purple poop can be somewhat common if you eat a lot of deeply colored vegetables like beets, but if you experience colors like this that you cannot associate with any food you recently ate, you will want to keep an eye on how many days it lasts and possibly see a doctor.
Finally, poop that is grayish or yellow in color is normally a sign that mucus is making its way into your stool. This shows that likely there is a problem with the liver or gallbaldder, since the liver is responsible for producing bile that gives stool a grayish/yellow tint.
While you don’t want to jump to any conclusions right away and assume the worst when your poop changes color, this is definitely something to see a doctor about and not wait out for too long, because certain colors can be pointing to possible serious conditions like gallbladder or liver disease, bleeding, gut parasites, and so on.
4 Common Causes of Abnormal Poop:
1. High levels of stress
Ongoing stress makes it difficult for many people to relax their body and go to the bathroom properly. Your brain and our gut actually have a very close relationship; they communicate how you are feeling back and forth to each other, working to increase and decrease “stress hormones” depending on your moods, which play a big part in healthy digestion.
In fact, common digestive disorders like Irritable Bowl Syndrome (IBS) are closely correlated with high levels of stress. When we are feeling stressed, our brain communicates these uneasy feelings to our digestive tract, making it very common for the gut wall to either constrict and tense up (causing constipation) or to work overtime and cramp up (causing diarrhea).
Stress can sometimes be a huge digestive obstacle to overcome, so much so that you may already eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of water, but without also addressing high stress levels, you still can’t experience some digestive relief. While you may not be able to control things like a busy schedule, you can prioritize reducing your stress by making sure you get good sleep each night and by regularly exercising, both of which help to bring down stress hormones levels.
2. Diet Low in Fiber
Fiber is extremely important when it comes to healthy poops; fiber is the binding substance that gives poop its form and helps it to move through the digestive tract. There are two kinds of fiber, both of which play a role in creating healthy poops: insoluble and soluble fiber. The difference between the two is their ability to dissolve in water; soluble fiber is able to dissolve in water while insoluble fiber is not.
If you struggle with ongoing constipation, pay close attention to how much fiber you are consuming daily. Consider swapping some of the foods in your diet that lack fiber- like meat, cheese, refined carbohydrates, and hydrogenated oils- for much healthier, whole foods that provide your body with a lot more benefits.
3. Inflammatory and Autoimmune foods
Unfortunately many people consume common inflammatory and allergen foods on a frequent basis, and these can really mess with the digestive system’s ability to produce normal poops, in addition to creating more serious conditions like leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune disease. If you’re struggling to go to the bathroom normally, try avoiding these inflammatory digestive “common culprits” which may be to blame:
- conventional dairy foods (like cows’ milk, cheeses, and yogurts that are not organic or pasteurized)
- gluten (found in all wheat products, nearly all processed foods, and anything containing rye and barley) which makes any digestive disorders worse
- processed soy (used in foods like soy milk, soy meat replacements, packaged veggie burgers, and many processed foods) which is a high allergen and autoimmune causing food
- high amounts of sugar, which unhealthy bacteria feeds off of in your gut
- also keep an eye on different types of nuts, grains, and shellfish since these are also high allergens and difficult for some people to digest
4. Alcohol & Caffeine
Stress and caffeine can create a range of negative reactions in the digestive tract that depend on the individual person. For example, some people experience an increased need and ability to poop after having caffeine, while others have the opposite problem.
Caffeine and alcohol both dehydrate the colon, and as you learned, a well hydrated digestive tract is crucial for creating healthy, normal poops.
How to Get Your Poop Back to Normal
1. Increase Your Fiber Intake
Adults want to make sure they consume fiber from whole food sources as often as possible (as opposed to artificially created fibers that are found in things like “high fiber” diet products and pre-made, commercially sold shakes).
It’s best to aim to get between 25-40 grams of fiber per day, with bigger individuals and men usually need an amount on the higher end of the scale. Getting this much fiber shouldn’t be too difficult if your diet is made up of real, whole foods- including plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Vegetables, fruits, and beans are some of the best sources of both soluble and insoluble fiber which will increase your ability to properly poop. However each person reacts to these foods differently, and some have trouble digesting certain kinds of beans and fibrous vegetables, which can actually worsen the problem. So, always be mindful about how you react to foods and try to zero-in on any that specifically may cause you digestive distress so you can avoid them.
Assuming they do not cause you known problems, work towards adding these types of fiber-rich foods to your diet as often as possible in order to ensure you’re eating plenty of gut-loving fiber.
Eat all leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cabbage (try steaming these to make digestion easier), artichokes, peas, all types of beans (which you can also pre-soak and sprout), squash and potatoes, berries, apples and pears (which can be blended as well), figs, dates, chia seeds, flax seeds, and various nuts.
2. Drink Plenty of Water
Aim to consume water every 2 hours at a minimum; drinking 8 oz. every couple of hours will keep you hydrated throughout the day and set you up for a healthier poop the following morning.
Whenever you are eating a lot of fiber, you want to also make sure to drink plenty of water. A high amount of fiber, without enough hydrating liquids, can actually result in even more trouble going to the bathroom, unfortunately. Remember that fiber swells and expands in the digestive tract, so if it doesn’t have enough water to absorb and to move it through the gut lining, you can experience uncomfortable bloating, gas, pains, and constipation.
Probiotics help to create a healthy environment in your gut “micoflora”. Essentially this means that the amount of “good bacteria” in your gut is able to balance the amount of “bad bacteria,” helping you to stay free of digestive problems including constipation or diarrhea.
Probiotic-rich foods include things like kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, kimchi and high-quality yogurts. Make sure that when buying dairy products, you always choose organic products as they are easier on digestion, such as goat milk products, organic kefir, raw dairy products, or dairy that doesn’t contain A1 casein which can cause inflammation. You can also try supplementing with a good-quality probiotic as well.
4. Supplement with Magnesium
If you frequently deal with constipation, magnesium has the natural ability to safely soften poop. It works to draw water from your gut into the poop and helps it to easily move through your system. Magnesium is also a natural muscle relaxer which can help to stop cramping in the gut and abdomen.
Since magnesium is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in adults, there are really no downsides to tying magnesium, as long as you stick within the recommended daily dosage carefully; if you start experiencing stools that are too loose and watery, you can adjust your intake until its comfortable and back to normal.
5. Support your Liver!
Did you know that your liver is responsible for producing the bile that digests fat? Without enough bile, your fats become something like soap in your gut! This backs up and can lead to constipation and difficulty detoxing the body of toxins. One of the best ways to support your liver is with diet and exercise! You can also do a liver cleanse to clean everything out and get your body back to feeling its best!
6. Get Your Body Moving!
Being active is a great way to get your poop cycle on a more regular schedule. Exercise stimulates the bowels and lymphatic system, which helps to push waste down to your colon, making it easier for you to go. On top of this, exercise also relaxes your mind and reduces stress, which as you now know is one of the biggest reasons for digestive troubles.
A quick note from our founder-
Over the past year, my friend Dave at PaleoHacks has been working on a secret cookbook with world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu chef Peter Servold.
Well, today this new this new incredible Paleo Cookbook is finally available to be shipped right to your door for FREE
That's right -- as a special launch promotion, we're offering our brand new Paleo fat loss cookbook to you for free (Chef Pete lost 60 lbs using these recipes!) -- All you have to do is just cover a small shipping cost (international shipping is a bit more).
Get your FREE copy of Paleo Eats Here. (Grab this today, because we only ordered a small batch of these cookbooks for this freebie promotion, and they will sell out FAST!)
Help us create more awareness! Please SHARE this article...
I bet you can’t guess which muscle in your body is the #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat.
This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
If this “hidden” most powerful primal muscle is healthy, we are healthy.
d) Hip Flexors
Take the quiz above and see if you got the correct answer!
P.S. Make sure you check out the next page to get to know the 10 simple moves that will bring vitality back into your life!
To begin, I apologize for the dark nature of today's email.
However I promise what you'll discover today will be completely worth it.
Imagine a rotting corpse draped over your body from head to toe...
...suffocating tissue, restricting blood flow, damaging joints and infecting your healthy cells.
Shockingly, that nightmare is a reality for most:
64% of women and 74% of men carry too much body fat according to the National Institutes of Health.
It's choking their organs, assaulting their metabolism and sucking their energy dry.
But here's the worst part:
For most, this bodyfat has become "calorie-resistant":
It's completely unaffected by even the strictest diets... and most intense exercises.
This zombie fat is essentially... "dead tissue".
That's important for those who have 10, 25 or 50 or more pounds to lose...
AND for those who aren't technically overweight, but have what's called "pocket obesity"...
...unsightly patches of fat that cling to specific places, like:
just above your hips, lower belly, where your butt and legs meet... and even arms, neck and face.
However, there's good news:
Obesity researchers have now discovered a "metabolic jumper cable":
It jolts dead bodyfat back to life.
This allows your metabolism to burn it as calories and re-energize your entire body.
First though, here's the #1 reason why bodyfat becomes calorie-resistant:
It lacks blood flow. This has 3 effects:
- Not enough oxygen or nutrients reach fat cells, so they become unresponsive..
- Released fat can't be sent to other tissues to be burned, so fat cells suck it back in...
- 3) Metabolic hormones carrying the "burn calories" message don't reach the fat cell...
All this means one thing:
Your body can't transform into energy, the 135,000+ of calories the average person stores as fat!
You become a metabolic zombie: NO energy to think. NO energy to move. NO energy to motivate.
Update: calorie-resistant bodyfat can be now removed...
The discovery of this "metabolic jumper cable" can now reverse this process:
- It wakes up un-responsive bodyfat with a powerful calorie-burning hormonal jolt....
- It pops open fat cells, sucks out the fat, sending it off before its yanked back in...
- It shuttles fat to your brain, heart, lungs, kidneys - even your bones - to be burned as energy.
Not only do those layers of "zombie fat" start coming off, but your entire body just works better.
Plus, as your whole body burns more calories, those patches of pocket obesity whittle away.
This "metabolic jumper cable" isn't any exercise, machine or pill.
It's a little-known, calorie-burning hormone we all have... just waiting for the right spark to come alive.
It's not thyroid, leptin, ghrelin, insulin, adiponectin, HGH or any other "fat loss" hormone you may know.
And on this next page, you'll find out precisely how to unleash its calorie-burning power:
PS - Studies show that not only can healthy levels of this powerful calorie-burning hormone devour bodyfat and fortify soft muscle, but it can also reduce your risk of diabetes by 53.7%, a heart attack by 83.3% and stroke by 51.4%. Here's more of the scientific proof...
In April, 2009, researchers stunned the medical community when they reported chronic inflammation as the root cause of several major diseases.
See, every year 610,000 people in the U.S. die of heart disease. Cancer claims another 584,000...stroke 130,000...Alzheimer's disease nearly 85,000 — and the list goes on.
Truth is, we now know... chronic inflammation is responsible for 7 out of the top 10 leading causes of death in the United States! Hundreds of studies and scientific reviews prove it.
Fortunately, newer research shows you can prevent-even reverse-most major diseases by "turning off" inflammation. And in our new book, we show you how to do just that.
If you or a loved one is suffering from a debilitating condition-and you"re not sure what the culprit is-now's the time to find out...while you can still do something about it!
--> Grab your FREE copy of this groundbreaking soft cover book today (while supplies still last.)
If you haven't heard of Claude Davis yet do yourself a huge favor and watch this video. He's going to be the talk of 2016.
One of the smartest guys I ever had the pleasure of meeting, Claude set-up a unique system that changed his life forever.
I already tried it myself and let me tell... you I was completely blown away... His surprising tactics could make your life easier and give you the peace of mind you deserve.
Don't just take my word for it... watch his short video and decide for yourself.
Is Bread Really the Staff of Life… or the Stuff of Disease?
For most us, there are few foods more comforting than bread.
Fluffy biscuits, crusty baguettes, flaky croissants… even a simple slice of toast topped with melted butter can taste like heaven.
And that smell… few scents are quite as pleasant as fresh bread baking in the oven.
But there is a lot of confusion as to where bread fits into a healthy diet.
The Bible practically commands followers to eat it: “Give us this day our daily bread…” The government put it at the base of the food pyramid. And for centuries, it has been called “the staff of life.”
Of course, there are some who disagree…
Well-known cardiologist, Dr. William Davis, calls wheat “the perfect chronic poison.”
And for a poison, we sure eat lots of it…
The average American consumes 55 pounds of wheat flour every year, making refined flour the #1 source of calories in the American Diet – a situation that nutrition expert Chris Kresser describes as, “a public health catastrophe.”
So, what is the truth about bread and wheat?
- Is it the perfect poison… or an essential daily food?
- Is “gluten-free” bread better for you than regular bread?
- And can you still eat bread… while maintaining a lean body and optimal health?
The answers to these questions may surprise you!
Be sure to read #5 – the biggest surprise of all!
Recently, Doctor of Naturopathy, weight-loss expert and best-selling Amazon author Liz Swann Miller, creator of the Red Smoothie Detox Factor, revealed 2 of the secrets to easy, steady weight loss. Secrets the big food corporations do their best to hide from us.
Secret #1: Enjoy real food. Don’t fall for the lie that you have to deprive yourself to lose weight.
Secret #2: stop eating out. You will automatically eat less without even noticing.
Then start detoxing your body with tasty, nourishing smoothies that are just as easy on your wallet as they are easy to make.
Because a single day of enjoying Liz’ smoothies demonstrated the radical power of her superfood-packed red smoothies to make me feel incredibly good.
Now prepare yourself for one of the biggest weight loss secrets there is. A secret that, when you use it properly, can transform your body and your health.
You probably know most of us eat too much processed food. What you may not know is that it’s full of toxic chemicals and substandard, dirt-cheap ingredients designed to make you eat more…and force you to gain weight.
Here’s how it works.
“That stuff is just a lot of calories your body can’t use,” Liz told me, “Some are poison. And all these foods are stripped of the anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatories that help your body detox. The result? Your body expends huge amounts of calories to eliminate some toxins—the rest, it stores in your fat to protect you. This is why most people are hungry all the time. They’re not getting energy they need.”
“So… what’s going on with me? Why am I losing weight but not going hungry?”
Liz paused, then dropped the bombshell.
Your body is designed to burn fat. You just have to let it.
“What? I thought we were designed to store fat?!?” We were Skyping and I was practically shouting. Then I heard Liz say…
What good is a fat reserve if you can’t burn it?
Liz continued: “You’re drinking smoothies packed with phytonutrients, anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatories that pull toxins out of you like a tractor beam. Allowing your body to burn those toxin-filled fat stores… and releasing tremendous amounts of stored energy.”
So that’s why I’m losing weight without going hungry.
Watch Liz’ free presentation. It’s packed with revolutionary weight loss information—information that works. Because it’s based on how nature.
Click the button only if you want to wear smaller clothes, breathe easier, move more freely and just plain feel better.
- Which calories help you lose weight…and which ones help you gain it…
- The “diet” foods…some of them vegetables…that lead to weight gain and diabetes…
- The “low-fat” foods that can dramatically increase your risk of cancer.
- And the superfoods that rescue your body from this assault by detoxing you…
Revitalizing your metabolism so you can Shed pounds as well as toxins, renew your body and reset your internal clock by up to 7 years.
Because until now, the Red Smoothie Detox Factor has been available only to Liz’ private clients. But now that she’s perfected it to work for almost everyone, almost every time, Liz is sharing it with rest of us so we can feel better and look better.
Get Red Smoothie Detox Factor before the price goes back up.
Because Liz offers a ridiculously good guarantee. You have 60 days to decide you love the Red Smoothie Detox Factor. If you don’t love it—for any reason, or even no reason at all —Liz will refund your money. 100%. No questions asked.
Sponsored Health Resources
In the years that I've been working on this website project I've come across some amazing resources by some very special people. I'd like to share them with you here.
NOTE: I update these links often so please check back to see what's new!
1) Everyone knows green smoothies are healthy right? Have you heard of a “red” smoothie? If not, check out this story…
2) Forget what you've read about 10-day lemonade cleanses, 7-day detoxes with green juices and Gwyneth's gruel. All you need to do, and this is perfect for Saturday or or anytime really, is a simple 1-day cleanse.
3) This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
4) I thought it was virtually impossible for a website to be able to tell me anything even a little bit insightful after only submitting my name and date of birth... I was wrong!
5) Turmeric is amazing. The problem is - It's hard to absorb!
6) Wonder why your stomach still sticks out even though you're hammering the core exercises every day? It's a common myth that bulging belly is due to weak abdominal muscles.
7) Even if you're the most active of athletes, you may still suffer from tight hip flexors due to the amount of time you spend each day planted to a chair.
Enjoy! Let me know how these work out for you. And if you run across anything I've missed please let me know.