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What Does Green Poop Mean

What Does Green Poop Mean

Is green bowel movement a serious issue? Scroll down and read to know the causes of green poop.
Nicks J
Last Updated: Apr 22, 2018
The term 'poop' refers to the solid waste matter that is eliminated out of the body during bowel evacuation. Usually, a healthy bowel movement produces brown colored stools. A change in stool color to green indicates that something is wrong with the intestines but can also mean too much consumption of certain foodstuffs. It is discussed below:
Causes
Diet
The food that we eat can also influence the color of the poop. Green vegetables in the diet is necessary for optimal health. Eating green vegetables in large amounts everyday is unlikely to damage your health but this habit can produce a harmless side effect that manifests in the form of green bowel movement.
Excessive Iron
Too much iron in the diet can also lead to green bowel movement. This side effect related to the color of the stool is often observed in patients put on iron supplements.
Intestinal Disorders
In this condition, the intestine is not in a position to work efficiently and the reasons are plenty, varying from presence of ulcers to the swelling of the lining of the intestine. Although there are different types of intestinal disorders, the common symptoms associated with poor intestinal function are abdominal pain, frequent or irregular bowel movement, and poor appetite.
Some of the common gastrointestinal disorders that can cause green defecation are given below:
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Crohn's disease
Food Poisoning
Eating foodstuffs that are not cooked properly or prepared in unsanitary conditions can cause food poisoning. Having contaminated food makes a person fall sick and the illness may give rise to green bowel movement.
Medications
In case the person is having green vegetables in moderate amounts and also is not suffering from intestinal problems then green poop may be due to intake of medicines like antibiotics.
Green Bile
As we all know, the liver produces a green colored digestive juice known as the bile. The production of bile is necessary to ensure proper digestion of food. It is a known fact that stool formation takes place in the large intestine. When the bile enters the large intestine, it eventually turns yellowish brown and then mixes with the stool. This is the reason why stool appears brown in color. However, if the bile and the stool formed move quickly out of the large intestine, it is unlikely that the bile will become yellow. So, with the bile color remaining the same (green), the waste matter also appears greenish-yellow during bowel movement.
Babies Defecating Green Poop
For the first few days, the newborn baby may actually have green poop, which is nothing but a green sticky substance called meconium. This is quite normal and there is nothing to worry about. It is just a matter of days before one starts seeing the baby's poop becoming brown. However, breastfeeding a baby frequently can also be responsible for green defecation.
To be honest, green stool in children or adults is usually not a cause for concern and does not demand any medical treatment. Many times, modifying the diet works to restore normal color of the stool. However, if this doesn't work and green defecation is accompanied by persistent abdominal pain and strange bowel pattern, it suggests intestinal issues. In such cases, taking medical assistance is necessary so as to find out the exact cause and as per diagnosis, take the required treatment at the earliest.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.