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The Colorful World Of Human Poop: What Does Each Color Mean?


💩The human poop speaks volumes when it comes to revealing the condition of our overall health. It can be used as a material agent to identify various underlying health issues in the system such as infection, malnutrition, good health, an excess of a particular nutrient or substance, as well as other information on the internal environment.

In infants, the color of poop is essential information used in detecting health issues. This is due to the obvious fact that babies are unable to communicate how they feel.

In adults and pregnant women, poop color is also highly vital in detecting maladies or irregularities. So, what is the normal color of poop?

The regular color of poop is typically between light to dark brown.  That is unless one is on special medication, diet, or herbs that may influence the color of poop.

Some people have reported red colored poop after eating a ton of beetroots, which is known for its distinctive red color.

Changes in the color of stool can be due to different reasons such as; diet or illnesses such as tumors, gallbladder disease, celiac disease, hemorrhoids, and cancer.

Poop with color that is uncommon may be as a result of intestinal bleeding, bleeding in the pancreas and liver, or diarrhea. Odd changes to the color of poop can also be due to medications.

Green poop may be due to green coloring in food. Poop appears green during diarrhea because of the presence of bile pigment.

Diarrhea moves the food very fast through the stomach discouraging bacteria from breaking down bile pigment, an action that is responsible for the brown color of poop.

Red or black poop may be a sign of bleeding in the digestive tract (from the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, or colon) and should not be ignored.

Bleeding in the digestive tract can cause poop to turn black or red.

There are a few clinical or laboratory tests that can be conducted to find out the reason behind the change in stool color. Fecal Occult Blood Test or FOBT can be carried out if bleeding from the stomach or intestine is suspected.

The remedy for a change in the color of stool depends on the treatment regimen for its underlying cause.


What Are The Reasons For Poop Color And Texture Changes?

Changes in the color of poop are not usually due to the presence of disease. However, diseases that can cause changes in stool color are;

  • Diarrhea
  • Bleeding in the intestinal area
  • Intestine, pancreas or liver diseases
  • Drugs that are issued over the counter.


What Is The Color Of Regular Human Poop?

Stool gets its color from bilirubin in the liver, also a product gotten from the breakdown of hemoglobin in red blood cells.

The action of digestive enzymes and bacteria present in the intestine causes bilirubin to change color. The occurrence of yellow stool can be due to a drop in the quantity of bilirubin that is being generated in the liver. Alterations in the chemical composition of bilirubin can also cause black or green coloration of poop.

Sandy, Greasy, and Unpleasant Smelly Poop

This can occur along with diseases like pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer when the pancreas fails to produce an adequate number of digestive enzymes or when the intestine fails to absorb fat due to the presence of disease in the intestine such as cystic fibrosis or Celiac’s disease.

Bright Red Poop

There are a number of possible reasons that can be responsible for the occurrence of bright red poop. The event can be due to diverticular bleeding, tumors, red coloring in food, malfunctions of arteries and veins, infections of the intestine, bleeding from an ulcer and Crohn’s disease. However, the most prevalent cause of bright red stool in adults is bleeding from hemorrhoids.


Maroon Poop

Poop with maroon color can be due to bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract. When digestion of blood is not completed in the small intestine, it also results in the maroon stool. This can lead to serious implications if not quickly addressed.

Black Tarry Poop

Black stools can occur when there is an influx of blood into the digestive system due to bleeding. This leaves the poop looking sticky with a foul smell.

Clay-Colored Or White Poop (pale stools)

The clay color of stool is usually linked to diseases of the liver. Pancreatic cancer can cause pale stool when it causes blockage of the bile duct.

Green Poop

The passage of stool through the intestine if too fast will not leave bacteria with adequate time to process bile and this will result in green colored poop.

Normally, bacteria in the intestine causes the chemical change in bile to transform to a greenish-brown color. It takes time for the bile to be fully charged in the intestine which allows poop to become brown again, and if the transit time is short, for example, when a person has diarrhea, the stool remains green colored.

The occurrence of green poop can be due to the failure of bacteria to act on the poop to convert it to its typical brown color. This is a  common occurrence during diarrhea. However, the consumption of vegetables and food with green coloration can also cause poop to turn green.

Mucus In The Human Poop

The presence of mucus in poop may be as a result of normal activity in the alimentary canal. Though, diseases such as cancer, irritable bowel disease (IBS) and inflammatory bowel disease can also cause mucus to appear in poop. Cases of mucus associated with blood and pains in the abdomen should be given prompt medical attention.

Drugs That Change Poop Color

Drugs that contain Iron and bismuth have both been strongly linked to black coloration in poop, however, drugs have also been identified as being the factor responsible for other colors in poop.

Changes in the color of poop often occur as a result of changes in diet or due to the color of food. However, when this color change is accompanied by vomiting, abdominal pain, fever or diarrhea, then a doctor needs to be promptly contacted.


Rectal Bleeding (Causes of Blood in poop)

The color of blood in poop ranges from bright red to maroon to black. Blood can also be present but not visible. Causes of blood in poop can range from gastrointestinal tract activities that are harmless such as hemorrhoids to serious conditions like cancer.


Baby’s poop: correlation between your baby’s poop and their health.

Bright Yellow poop:

This is common with babies being breastfed. The appearance of this color could be due to diarrhea.

Orange colored poop

Orange colored poop is prevalent with children getting baby formula. This color is not tied to any health risk.

Black colored poop

This is not uncommon with newborns but should be checked if it continues to occur as baby advances in age.

Mustard Yellow poop

This occurs with children receiving breast milk. Poop appearing in this color is not connected to any health risk.

Red-colored poop

Not connected to a specific type of diet. It is okay if the child has taken food containing red coloring, otherwise, it is advisable to contact a doctor.


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