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Why feces green?

In an adult healthy person, the color of the feces should be brown (of different shades). Coloring gives it bilirubin bile pigment, and a change in the color of feces may depend on some foods that are eaten, and on diseases or disorders of the digestive system or liver. For example, during jaundice (hepatitis) the color of the feces becomes almost white, and after a person eats beets, the feces may become burgundy. And why feces green? What foods can cause this color of feces, as well as what diseases can affect such a change in its color? Let's see.


Green color (of different shades) may be given to feces by some products that contain natural or artificial food colors (pigments). For example, in a healthy person such changes can cause the following products:

  • spinach;
  • fennel, cilantro, parsley;
  • broccoli;
  • Red beans;
  • red meat;
  • sea ​​fish;
  • juices and mashed green vegetables;
  • fizzy green drinks;
  • green marmalade;
  • green candies.


Some drugs may also give feces green:

  • laxatives based on herbal ingredients;
  • algae-based drugs and nutritional supplements;
  • dietary supplements with a high percentage of iron;
  • synthetic vitamins;
  • iodine preparations;
  • antibiotics;
  • drugs glucose and sorbitol.

Why feces turn green after eating these foods and drugs? The fact is that a large amount of green pigment is not digested and stains green in feces. Also, the color of feces can change not only the pigment, but also the remnants of products not digested by the stomach. True, in order for this to be the reason for the change in the color of feces, you should eat quite a lot of such products. Or eat constantly for a long time.


If you are sure that the reason for the change in the color of feces lies not in the diet and not in the medications, then you should think about your health. Because green feces can be a sign of such diseases:

  • food poisoning;
  • food allergies;
  • stomach ulcer;
  • violation of nutrient absorption in the small intestine (malabsorption syndrome);
  • enterocolitis;
  • Crohn's disease;
  • thyrotoxicosis;
  • internal bleeding;
  • intestinal innervation;
  • dysentery;
  • oncological diseases;
  • dysbacteriosis;
  • intestinal flu (rotavirus infection).

The cause of the change in the color of feces is not the disease itself, but the pathological disorders caused by it: leukocyte accumulations in places of the inflammatory process; fermentation and rotting in the stomach and intestines; destruction of iron in red blood cells, etc.

This is not a complete list of diseases that can cause a change in the color of feces in a child and an adult. However, there may be other reasons explaining why a child’s feces is green. We wrote about this in more detail in the article Why the child has a green chair.

In any case, when it is detected that the feces have changed color to green, you should try to find out the reason: analyze the power supply system and undergo a diagnostic examination.


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