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Green Stool

Overview

Green stool refers to stools with green color or tint. Green feces may be considered normal in certain circumstances, for instance, in breast-fed babies. Stool or feces may be pale to dark brown in color. Bile which is a fluid generated by the liver assists in the digestion of food eaten.

Some meals, such as green, leafy vegetables or green food coloring, or bile pigment in feces, may also contribute to the green hue.

Green stools may also occur because of iron supplementation or the intake of specific foods, such as green leafy vegetables. Green stool may also suggest a digestive issue caused by an illness, infection, or irregular bowel and colon function.

Because of the fast transit of food through the stomach during diarrhea, intestinal chemicals and bacteria are unable to break down the bile pigment back to its usual brown hue.

The most important thing you can do to regulate your stool color is to consume a well-balanced diet. Light to dark brown is the ideal color for a stool.

In most instances, green feces is not a cause for concern. However, it can be an indication of other illnesses and it is crucial to see a doctor if the stool color changes to bright or dark green.

Causes

Diet:
Green stools may occur after the consumption of iron-rich meals or supplements, as well as leafy green vegetables and foods containing green food coloring. Green feces is most likely caused by your diet, particularly if you consume leafy greens such as broccoli, kale, and spinach on a daily basis in addition to other garden veggies. Your feces may include a chemical called chlorophyll, which gives plants their green hue. Avocados, green apples, hemp seeds, basil, and parsley all are responsible for causing green feces. Excessive intake of matcha, which is a kind of tea, also leads to the passage of dark green stool.

Infection:
A greenish stool may be caused by a bacterial infection, a viral infection, or a parasite infection that results in unabsorbed bile in your stool. Salmonella food infection may result in green stools as a sign of a variety of intestinal diseases that block digestion. Bile, a yellow-green fluid that assists digestion, changes color as food passes through the digestive tract, resulting in feces that range in hue from light to dark brown. When an infection, such as Salmonella, occurs, food passes rapidly through the digestive tract before becoming a dark brown hue.If you have diarrhea, your food may be passing through your large intestine too fast. Consequently, the bile does not have enough time to fully decompose it.

Inflammation also causes green stool. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a disorder that causes inflammation of the colon leading to the passage of green stool.

Since viral infection also results in the excretion of green stool, it is possible that the Covid patient will pass stool, which is green in color.

Other medical conditions that are associated with green stool include:

  • Anal fissures
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Colitis

Antibiotics may create modest changes in the way your body digests food in certain instances. The medication may alter the microbial ecology of your stomach, causing your feces to have a greenish tint. Furthermore, certain medications may induce stomach pain, resulting in green-colored bile-filled diarrhea.

Sometimes the presence of green color in stool is due to the therapeutic procedures. For instance, gallbladder removal. It allows excess bile to enter your digestive tract and produces greenish diarrhea.

During the first several days after delivery, a newborn infant will also pass thick, sticky, dark green feces (known as meconium). Green poop may be observed in breast-fed infants as well. Similarly, green stool in toddlers is also a common occurrence.

Symptoms

Changing the feces color to green may indicate a digestive illness or stomach infection. It could also be from eating something green, blue, or purple. Green stool is also a common adverse effect of some drugs and iron supplements. Green diarrhea (loose stools) can indicate a viral infection.

Diagnosis

To determine the reason for your GS, your doctor may review your medical history or conduct a physical examination. They may also do the following tests for green stool diagnosis whether or not there is an underlying condition.

  • Stool samples are tested to determine whether there are any specific abnormalities.
  • Blood tests to rule out allergies or other disorders like celiac disease
  • CT scans, MRI scans, and colonoscopies will be performed to discover the exact cause.
  • stools cultures
  • Eating a barium-laced meal coats the organs and makes them visible on an X-ray.
  • A barium enema
  • Endoscopy using ultrasonography allows your doctor to examine your esophagus and stomach.

Treatment

The following are the options for green stool treatment.

Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics for bacterial infections.

IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) is occasionally treated with medication. If you have IBS with diarrhea, your doctor may prescribe diarrhea-reducing drugs such as loperamide. 

Celiac disease requires a gluten-free diet. 

IBS treatments include dietary changes as well as stress-relief measures.

Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, like other intestinal disorders, frequently necessitate dietary changes. Crohn’s disease sufferers almost always require surgery to alleviate their symptoms.

When To See A Doctor

Although variations in stool color or texture may be expected, the majority of these alterations should be investigated further. If you are concerned about the color of your feces, you should see a doctor. Seek medical care right away, if the color of your feces is bright red or black, since this may indicate the presence of blood. Green stool that lasts a long time may be linked with more severe green stool symptoms such as stomach pain, blood in the stool, and nausea. These signs and symptoms may suggest that you should consult with a doctor.

Disclaimer

This information is intended for educational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have concerns about green stool or any other medical condition, please see a doctor for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment suggestions.

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