We eat food which gives us energy to perform our daily chores. The waste products which is left out after using essential nutrients is excreted out of the body in the form of stool. Human stool or feces is normally light brown to medium brown in color. But this color may change according to the internal condition of the body or the food habit which one follow.
The normal stool color may change to red, yellow, black, green or gray if there is any problems or disorders in the body. Where red and black color stool may indicate medical emergency, green and yellow color stool is quite common. In this article we are going to discuss various causes of green stool. Though green stool is common, sometimes it may be a result of some serious disorders.
Causes of Green Stool
There are many green stool causes and the color may vary from light green to dark green. Some causes are common but some may indicate complications. Green color can be seen in both adults as well as children. Following are some of the causes of green colored stool.
➡ Bile Secretion
Bile is secreted by the liver and is stored in the gallbladder. It is of yellowish green color. Bile juice is present in the small intestine and helps in the process of digestion. When the waste material passes through the small intestine, bile juice acts on it and helps in the digestion of fats. As the stool comes in contact with the bile juice, it undergoes chemical reaction and the green color of bile changes to brown. If the stool passes more frequently than normal, then the reaction is unable to take place which results in green color stool.
Indigestion can be a reason behind green colored stool. Indigestion may cause diarrhea but it is common and can be cured easily. In children, problem with digestive health is very frequently, hence green color stool is very common in them.
➡ Intake of Green Vegetables
Chlorophyll rich vegetables may be one of the reason behind dark green stool. If the green vegetables are taken in excess, they may cause your stool green. Hence there is no need to panic, but if you are still worried about it, then stop the consumption of green vegetables for few days and observe your stool. As green vegetables are some of the healthiest foods, start its consumption once your doubts are clear.
➡ Food Poisoning
Food contaminated with bacteria especially E. coli or any other type of food poisoning can take you to green stool color. Try to avoid stale or contaminated food. If you observe green color stool for more than three days with fever and abdominal cramps, then consult a doctor immediately.
Some medicines may cause you green colored stool, but it is more common in children than in adults. But if the green color stays for more than three days then consult a doctor specially when the color is observed after taking an antibiotic.
➡ Supplements Intake
Intake of supplements like iron can cause green colored stool. It is common in children and infants. Consult a doctor for advice and treatment.
➡ Suppositories or Laxatives
Intake of suppository or laxative for stimulating bowel movement may cause you green stool. It is not necessary that all laxatives will result in green stool. If you observe green color with some traces of blood in stool, then it can be a medical emergency.
➡ Artificial Food Coloring
Many food products such as candies, cake frosting, ice-cream, etc,. contain artificial food colors. Certain drinks also contain artificial color. These colors may result in green color stool. These food colors are unhealthy, hence you should avoid the consumption of products having artificial color.
➡ Other Causes
There are many other causes also which may result in green color stool. Some liver disorder like jaundice may cause you green stool. Apart from this, the first stool of infants known as meconium is dark green in color and is very normal. Irritable bowel syndrome can also cause green color in stool.
The above given green stool causes are not harmful and can be treated very easily. But if you are observing green color stool for more than three days then consult a doctor immediately. You can also go through stool color chart if you are observing any other color in the stool apart from green. So, observe your stool regularly. It may sound a nasty job but it can be a symptom of some fatal disease. Find the reason behind the change in stool color and try to solve the problem in the initial stage to avoid complications.