The Scoop on Poop
by Rochelle Griffin
Hey we all do it! Yet poop seems to be the last thing anyone wants to talk about. As a RN and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition™ practitioner, I can talk poop anywhere without blinking an eye…even over dinner…ask my hubby & son. Our poop is a great indicator of our health, so…let’s talk poop! Cue the giggles of all the kids!
The functioning of our gastrointestinal tract is imperative to our health. Over 60% (and some say up to 80%) of our immunity occurs in our gut, plus 75% of our melatonin (the sleep hormone) is made there as well. It behooves us to have a happy belly.
The size, shape, color, and consistency of our stool give us a lot of information and are good indicators if we need to seek professional help. Our stool is made up of about 75% water. The rest is fiber, live & dead bacteria, mucus, and cells.
The Bristol Stool Chart is an easy tool to determine which poop you should be aiming for…OY! Excuse the pun! Types 1& 2 lean towards constipation. Types 3, 4, & 5 are considered ideal…with Type 4 being the gold medal of poop. Types 6 & 7 lean towards diarrhea.
Constipation occurs when the stool sits in our colon for longer than it should. Increasing fibrous foods and water intake often help people with the occasional problem.
Diarrhea occurs when the stool moves through our digestive tract too quickly, not giving the colon time to absorb water. There are many causes of diarrhea including parasites, bacteria, reactions to gluten or dairy, and diseases such as Crohn’s, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and Hyperthyroidism.
If you are having Types 1, 2, 6, or 7 for a period of time, it is always wise to speak to your physician. It’s best to be safe than sorry. If after talking with your doc, you are still experiencing Types 6 & 7 specifically, it would be wise to have a functional medicine practitioner run a pathogen screen on your tests AND look at your adrenal/gut function.
My young son was dealing with stomach issues, cramps, loose stool, and weight loss for over 2 years. It was “mild” per our physician and didn’t warrant medication. I ended up running a pathogen screen on him, and we discovered he had a parasite (yep a bug in his belly,) H-pylori (a common bacteria in the stomach that is the main culprit of ulcers,) and a major overgrowth of yeast. We treated all 3 naturally (although antibiotics and prescription medications ARE an option, it wasn’t the route we wanted to go) and he’s been doing great ever since.
To give you the best chance of a good poop, here are a few tips:
- Exercise 5-6 days per week to keep gut motility healthy.
- Drink plenty of pure water daily.
- If you have constipation or diarrhea, cut out gluten & dairy from your diet.
- Stay away from chemicals and preservatives in your foods.
- Eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit with fiber.
- Take a daily multi-probiotic or brew your own Kumbucha tea for a daily dose of healthy probiotics.
Look, I know that poop isn’t everyone’s favorite topic but it’s something that must be talked about. Take a peek next time, if you don’t normally, and see where you fall on the scale. Make a mental note. Then put the tips into play.
Remember, a healthy belly and GI tract means a healthy body, aka a healthy you!
To Living Your Best Life,
Rochelle Griffin, RN BSN FDN-P
Rochelle Griffin, The Wellness Detective™, is a Registered Nurse (with over 22 years experience) & a Functional Diagnostic Nutrition™ Practitioner who has transitioned her love for fitness, health, & freedom into a 7-figure International company that now helps others live Their Best Life.
She founded Your Best Life, Inc with her husband Keith after stepping onto the edge of physical ruin with her health & the health of their young son. Having experienced a complete turn-around, they now desire to give hope & support to those who are dissatisfied with their current situation.
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