Breakdown of what to do when visually tracking your bowel movement:
- How to visually track stool colour
- Frequency of bowel movement
- Different stool sizes and shapes
- Something ain’t right? Get your DNA or microbiome checked
Paying attention to your stool can help you build a stronger gut, banish inflammation, keep tabs on your organ function, and absorb more nutrients from the food you eat. Because your gut influences everything from your mood to your skin, improving your belly bacteria will help you look and feel your BEST.
I am one of the weird ones that inspect my poop on a daily basis and I always try to find connections depending on what I’ve eaten the day before. And I believe you should too. Tracking your poop can tell you a lot about your digestion and overall health.
One thing I always recommend to all my clients before they start the 4R’sgut Healing Protocol is to track their bowel movement along with at least a 3-day food diary.
3 simple ways to visually track your gut health:
- Stool Color
- Stool Size and Shape
Different colours of your stool can represent a health issue or it can just simply mean you have eaten food high in food colouring, such as beetroot = red poop.
This is why it is important to not just track your poop but also think about what you have eaten in the past few days. Have you taken any type of medication or consumed alcohol. I love this graphic chart done by Healthline, taken from Mayo Clinic information.
Even though you need to pay close attention to all three types of poop factors, the frequency is very important.
So how long is too long without pooping?
Going longer than three or more days without a poop is usually too long and you should be slightly concerned. The longer it takes for you to have a bowel movement the harder and more difficult it will be to pass the stool.
Chronic constipation raises your chances of having complications. When you’re constipated, you’re more likely to push hard to try to go and this can lead to haemorrhoids, anal fissures and impaction.
We all heard about fibre is important for healthy poop. But, what happens if you have too much fibre in your diet?
You guessed right!
Excessive fibre intake frequently affects the digestive system and can cause constipation. A 2012 study investigated the effect of reducing dietary fibre. 63 subjects that enrolled in this study have shown significant improvement in their constipation after lowering their fibre intake.
3. Stool Size and Shape
There are seven types of stool, according to the Bristol Stool Scale that can tell you quite a lot about your health and gut.
The stool size naturally correlates with your regularity. If you are a Type 1 or 2, your bowel movement is less regular and therefore, more harmful or unhealthy for you and your gut. Whereas, 6 and 7 are much more frequent which can also be a bad thing. This is why Type 4 is the golden standard of pooping perfection!
A combination of factors
All 3 factors: stool colour, frequency and size should be considered when trying to figure out how healthy is your gut.
Make sure you always remember what you have eaten the day before to avoid a small freak out when your poop is suddenly green or red, as often it could be just the consequence of the food you consumed. As a true (occasional) beetroot maniac I myself have small freakouts from time to time.
Therefore, it is important to look at the full picture. But what if you can’t find any connections, your toilet routine is all over the place from frequency to consistency?
It’s time to get checked!!!
Nowadays, from the comfort of your home, you can find out exactly what is happening inside your gut and what is giving you so much trouble. I’ve experienced chronic constipation in my teenage years and as an expat living in Vietnam (hygiene is sometimes questionable when eating out) I have experienced the every 30-minute toilet visits, with fever, stomach ache and nausea. Luckily, it was a 36-hour window of hell that then went away.
But if you ain’t so lucky microbiome testing is the way to go. You can:
- Learn how microbes protect you from disease
- Understand how diet affects gut bacteria
- Optimise microbe’s vitamin synthesis
- Dietary fibre breakdown and butyrate synthesis
- Personalised food recommendations
- Probiotics and beneficial bacteria report
Are you worried about your poop and digestion? Feel free to book a FREE 30-minute session with a nutritionist specialising in digestive health and finally get some answers that Dr.Google can’t answer for you. ?