Potty Talk – What Is Your Bowel Movement Telling You

by Donna Gates

potty-talk

As it turns out, what comes out of the body is just as important as what goes in.
In other words, the frequency, consistency, and color of your stool can be important markers of disharmony or disease.

Learning to understand what your bowel movements are telling you can empower you to make healthier choices in diet and lifestyle!

Do you fall into any of the following categories?

Constipation

The more time that waste material spends in the colon, the drier and difficult to paste it becomes. Stools that are lumpy and small or nut-sized are signs that you could benefit from a speedier transit time.

In Chinese medicine, bowel movement frequency and stool consistency help a practitioner to identify the underlying cause of a disorder. When it comes to constipation, key signs can signal what is necessary to bring the body back into balance.

  • Heat: Often, when there is heat in the body, there is some degree of toxicity or inflammation. A strong odor usually accompanies constipation that is marked by heat. Feeling thirsty often is a common signal that your body is struggling to balance excessive heat.
  • Stagnation: Stagnation that leads to constipation generally involves liver energy. In Chinese medicine, the liver governs the smooth flow of energy throughout the entire body. If the liver is overwhelmed or exhausted, this can result in constipation. One sign that the liver may be involved is when constipation is accompanied by acid regurgitation or gas.
  •  
    When constipation involves liver energy, it is essential to address stress.
    It is possible for psychological stress to generate constipation. In Western physiology, we know that digestion does not begin in the mouth – it begins first in the mind. The sight, smell, and thought of food stimulate the release of neurotransmitters, which kick start digestion by increasing gastric acid in the stomach.

    When we get stressed or enter fight-or-flight mode, all of this digestive activity comes to a halt! Taking time for prayer or a quiet moment of gratitude before a meal is a practice that can optimize digestion and elimination by allowing the mind time to prepare.

    Diarrhea

    Loose stools and diarrhea are usually signs of coldness or deficiency in the body. This is especially true when stools are regularly loose and formless.

    If you notice loose stools on a regular basis, this may be an indication of a deeper problem with the lining of the gut wall and your inner ecology. A gut healing protocol can begin to heal inflammation and correct any imbalance in gut bacteria. This means:

  • Choosing vegetables that are either fermented or well-cooked over raw. Fermented vegetables are predigested. In other words, beneficial bacteria have done some of the work for you! When you choose fermented vegetables, you are also updating your inner ecology with a dose of these beneficial bugs.
  • When vegetables are well-cooked, this leaves little fiber for gut bacteria to feed on. Too much fiber can feed bacteria in the wrong places, and this can contribute to diarrhea or alternating constipation and diarrhea.

  • Drink probiotic beverages. Another easy way to transform your inner ecology is to introduce active enzymes and living beneficial bacteria from probiotic beverages like water kefir or coconut water kefir.
  • Drink bone broth. Bone broth is exceptionally healing for the mucosa lining the wall of the gastrointestinal tract. It contains special amino acids that assist in the repair of the gut wall, as well as other protein-based nutrients – like collagen – that improve skin texture and nourish the joints.
  • Consume L-glutamine. L-glutamine is an amino acid that research has found to be incredibly healing for the gut mucosa. It feeds the cells of the small intestine and can help to improve intestinal permeability.1 Bone broth contains l-glutamine and so does Body Ecology’s Vitality SuperGreen. In fact, Body Ecology’s blend contains Glutimmune, which is 10 times as potent as l-glutamine.
  • Floating Stool

    Stool that floats is a sign that you body is not digesting fats well. Green or white clay-colored stool may be an indication that the liver or gallbladder is under stress.

    If you suspect that you may have an issue with digesting fats, or if you have had your gallbladder removed, it may help to incorporate ox bile into your lifestyle as a supplement. Ox bile, like our own bile, can help the body to break down fat into usable pieces.

    When the liver becomes congested with too much work and toxicity, we can nourish the liver directly with herbs like milk thistle, which has been found to benefit many extreme states of liver disease, ranging from cirrhosis to viral hepatitis. This is largely due to an antioxidant group known as silymarin.

    Other powerful antioxidant herbs like artichoke, wasabi, and sarsaparilla, in addition to milk thistle boost antioxidant levels in the liver tissue while encouraging bile flow.

    Ideally…

    While each one of us has a distinct personal history that shapes our health and our dietary needs, we all need to get rid of waste. And we all need to do so on a regular basis.

    In spite of our unique differences, a healthy bowel movement has a few key features that can apply to almost everyone. As you make changes in your diet and in your lifestyle, you may notice changes in your stool. You know that you are on the right track when a bowel movement:

  • Happens Daily: If you think that a regular and healthy bowel movement happens every 2-3 days, you are not alone. Many of us believe that it is normal to have a movement every other day. In reality, a healthy bowel movement happens every day. And for some of us, after every meal.
  • Has a Clean Wipe: Stool should leave the body easily and cleanly. If you find that there is a wet or sticky residue, this may be an indication of intestinal parasites or gut inflammation.
  • Has Little Odor: In Chinese medicine, odor is a sign of heat and toxicity in the body. Unless you are on a protocol to deeply cleanse the body, there should be little odor with elimination.
  • Is Well-Formed: A well-formed stool is not too dry but still has a smooth shape. When stools are well-formed, this is a good indicator that transit time is on point!
  • What To Remember Most About This Article:
    By regularly monitoring the frequency, consistency, and color of your stool, you can detect any issues in your health before they become serious.

    A healthy bowel movement should happen daily with little odor and an easy clean. Supporting your gut health with beneficial bacteria can keep your digestive system running smoothly!

    To heal the gut, eat fermented vegetables and drink probiotic beverages regularly.

    And remember, what comes out of your body is just as important as what goes in.

    REFERENCES:

    • 1. NA Hering. Therapeutic options to modulate barrier defects in inflammatory bowel disease. Dig Dis. 2009;27(4):450-4. Epub 2009 Nov 4.
    • photo credit: Kit4na cc

      About the author...

      , a nutritional consultant, author and lecturer has helped thousands of people overcome candidiasis and other immune system disorders. Her book, The Body Ecology Diet, was written after years of research to find a cure for her own candida-related issues. If you or a loved one struggle with digestive or candida issues, be sure to learn more about the Body Ecology Core Program

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