Did you know that “Why is my poop green?” was the tenth most popular search term googled by Australians in 2018?
We shit you not.
As toilet (and poo experts), we figured it was our duty to shed some light on the answer to this question. So, if you’ve been to the toilet and noticed your poop is not its standard shade of brown, we encourage you to keep reading below…
But first, don’t panic.
As you may already know, your poop comes in a range of colours, shapes, and sizes. The variation is all dependent on what you’ve eaten and whether you are feeling at your best. In rare cases, the color of your poop can be a concern, but it relates typically to black or red poop which may contain blood.
So, why is your poop green?
Well, everyone has a thing called bile in their body. Bile is that green-yellow substance that sometimes finds its way into your throat if you’ve been ill and have nothing else left to eject from your body. The primary responsibility of bile is to break down and digest fat as it travels through your gastrointestinal tract. As it moves, enzymes alter the chemical makeup of the bile and change its colour from green to brown. If these enzymes did not exist, your poop would always be green.
This means that if your stomach is upset and you are going to the toilet more often than you would like (a.k.a. “the runs”), your body will not have had a chance to undertake this transformation process. Instead, it moves quickly through your intestines and out the other side – not stopping for anything!
But what if you don’t have an upset stomach? And your bowel movements are frequent, regular and healthy?
Your green poop could be related to your diet. Think back to the last few meals or snacks you’ve devoured. Was anything green?
Sometimes, your poop can be green because you ate or drank something with green food colouring in it, like within a fruit juice or a popsicle. It can also appear bright green after eating a lot of leafy vegetables such as spinach and silverbeet.
While it might not look ordinary, having green poop is not usually a cause for concern. However, if you’re experiencing long-lasting bouts of discoloured poop, we recommend speaking to your healthcare professional just to be safe.
For more information on your bowel movements or if you have any concerns, contact your healthcare professional. For information and guidance on portable sanitation products, contact Australian Portable Toilets at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1800 POO WEE.