Have you ever noticed undigested food in the stool and got a sudden feeling that you have something going on inside your body that isn’t good? Well, you’re not alone.
Our body removes wastes and digested food materials through stop but sometimes your stool isn’t the same. It can range in colors, shapes, and textures. Sometimes you may find undigested food which is intact in your stool. You shouldn’t be afraid as mostly it isn’t a severe concern.
So, when should you see a doctor when you see undigested food in the stool? In this article, you’ll find why there might be undigested food in the stool and how to treat this problem.
Read on to find out!
Reasons why you have undigested food in the stool
Occasionally, you may see undigested or intact food in your stool. There are a variety of textures and forms of your stool that it’s hard to clarify if it’s normal.
However, it’s not a bad thing if you see undigested food in the stool. There can be a lot of reasons this may happen. Let’s look into them!
High fibre food might be responsible
Fiber is an indigestible part of plant foods. Eating high fiber foods can cause undigested food to appear in your stool as it is common for some undigested material because your body cannot fully break down the hard material.
Bowel movements are sped up when you eat fibrous food by adding bulk to the stool and encouraging the intestinal walls to move. This can cause the food to be pushed through the digestive tract.
Foods like beans, seeds, corn, peas, leafy greens, carrots, raisins, nuts, and many more foods can come intact out of your body and appear in your stool.
Not chewing food thoroughly
How you chew your food may also determine your stool. The digestion process begins when the food is crushed by your teeth. If you do not chew your food thoroughly, it may make it difficult for the digestive enzyme to digest the food so it may pass through your body intact.
The digestive enzymes present in your saliva, glands in the stomach lining, pancreas, liver, and small intestine are substances that speed up the chemical reactions in your body that help in breaking down the food you eat into nutrients.
The food has a hard shell on the outside
Some nuts and seeds have a tough exterior that makes it difficult to access the fats stocked inside. For example, a kernel of corn has an outer case made of cellulose which cannot be broken down by human enzymes inside your belly.
Although the inside of the corn is digested by your digestive system but not the outer case of the corn, causing it to appear in your stool.
Things are moving quickly
Usually, it would take 24-72 hours for the food to pass through your digestive system. Some people may notice the food particles in the stool which aren’t broken down properly.
This may happen because the motility rate is influenced by the colon muscles’ health and also because of your diet. This motility rate may vary in different sections of your bowels.
Certain medical conditions
While the most common cause of undigested food in the stool is fibrous foods, certain medical conditions may also be responsible for this phenomenon.
These medical conditions may include Crohn’s disease, Celiac disease, pancreatic insufficiency, lactose intolerance, and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). These conditions may cause symptoms like diarrhea or stomach pain.
How to treat undigested food in the stool?
Seeing undigested food in the stool is very common and may happen when you eat fibrous food, it might be also due to certain medical conditions.
If you face this problem too often, it’s a good idea to see a doctor who can analyze your condition well. To treat this condition, you can adopt some good eating habits and have a little change in your diet for better digestion and bowel movements.
Here is what you can do:
- Eat smaller meals to allow your digestive system to efficiently process the food and pass it out smoothly. This ensures proper digestion of food.
- Make sure you are eating your food slowly and thoroughly. This ensures proper digestion of your food.
- Hydration is important for your digestive, it helps the food to flush down smoothly. Drink a lot of water to promote hydration in your body.
- Do not eat fiber rich food that is hard to digest. This may include bananas, rice, grapefruit, chicken, nuts, corn, raisins, etc. This may help with your condition.
- Make sure to avoid foods that cause gas in your stomach. Foods like carbonated drinks, cabbage, beer, etc can stimulate this problem. Make sure to prevent eating these foods.
- Eat probiotic foods like yogurt, probiotic drinks, kefir, etc to keep your digestive tract run smoothly, and ultimately your stool starts to appear clear.
This was all about the phenomenon related to you seeing undigested food in the stool. While seeing undigested food in the stool might be a little gross but nothing to worry about. But, if you see this happening again and again in a short period with diarrhoea and other not-so-normal things, you should get yourself checked with the doctor.
Although, mostly it is not a big concern. Your stool is pretty versatile, it may change with the type and colour of the food you are eating. You may pass out what you eat, so it’s common to experience a change in colour or texture which is quite normal.
So, make sure you don’t worry unless you’re experiencing this too often and you feel something’s wrong. Start making changes to your eating habits and eat food which helps in digesting the food more smoothly.