Your stool and your body
Not the nicest of topics, but it is quite a valuable one when it come to your body and health.
You can tell a lot about you diet via you faeces (Poo).
What goes in must come out and all of that however how it goes in is very different to how it comes out and this tells us a lot about what is going on inside us.
There are many different types that come out ranging from shape and size to the colour of your stool.
The picture below shows the Bristol Stool Chart and this shows in what ways what we eat can exit our bodies as faeces.
Picture source: Wikipedia, licensed under the Creative Commons [LINK]
(1) – Several separate hard lumps which can be rough and hard to get out. These lumps as they are rough can cause very slight cuts in your anal lining which can be quite painful when passing more stool as I once found out myself.
This can cause some bleeding at times, but a cream can be given by the doctor which needs to be applied internally via you can guess where.
This type of poo is usually cause by low fibre in the diet or post anti-biotic treatment.
(2) – Sausage shaped and lumpy stools are caused by (1) clumping and sticking together.
Usually occur when the person is not going to pass faeces as regular as normal leading to a build-up in the bowl and intestine. This can cause constipation if not relieved regularly.
These stools can be quite big at times which make it even more likely to cause cuts in the anal lining and can also cause haemorrhoidal prolapse or diverticulosis.
People with stool like this usually suppers from irritable bowl syndrome (IBS) caused by the continued pressure exerted on the intestinal walls.
Adding more fibre to your diet can be bad if your stool is like this as it will have nowhere to go. This added fibre could lead to hernia, obstruction, or in severe cases perforation.
Its best just to try and pass this stool whenever you feel you can and not let it get to this stage again after by providing your body with the fibre you would have realised it needs.
(3) – This stool is similar to (2) however not as large due to the more easy passing.
It is not as bumpy or lumpy but does have a cracked appearance which suggest lack of moisture being held in the stool so irritable bowl syndrome (IBS) and is likely in this stool but not as likely as (2), pleasing to hear, right?
(4) – Sausage or snake-like, smooth and soft this stool is more easy to pass and is usually the stool of somebody who empties their bowel on a daily basis so is quite healthy compare to (1, 2 and 3).
This stool is from having a ok amount of fibre in the diet.
(5) – This soft stool with clear-cut edges that are passed easy is pretty much the idea stool to have meaning this stool brings no complications when emptying your bowels.
(6) – This fluffy with ragged edge soft and lumpy stool can be a pain as its verging on diarrhoea, (7).
Not runny like (7) it passes rather easy but wiping can sometimes be a pain to do depending on the stage it is at before (7).
This happens usually due to a overactive Bowel, too much potassium in your diet, sudden dehydration or spike in blood pressure related to stress.
Both sudden dehydration and a spike in blood pressure cause the rapid release of water and potassium from blood plasma into the intestinal cavity.
(7) – This as you may have guessed is diarrhoea. A sloppy unpleasing type of stool that I don’t really think should be classed as stool as there is no bulk to its mass.
During and illness this can happen as the bacteria levels are down that help the stool form and become moist. Due to this the stool can become dry in the small intestine causing constipation of the small intestine.
Fluids are not absorbed at this point so have nowhere else to go but carry on its journey through the intestines flushing small particles and faeces left in the intestine into the bowel filling the bowl with watery faecal fluid, also known as diarrhoea.
This will eventually rectify itself, just be sure to keep hydrated as the body is not absorbing it at this time properly.
I use the following definitions:
Types 1, 2 and 3 = hard or impacted stools
Type 4 and 5 = normal or optimal
Type 6 = loose stool, subnormal or suboptimal
Type 7 = diarrhoea