Human feces smell unpleasant to everyone, and most imagine that it can’t get any worse. However, many abnormalities and disorders that plague the body can make a person’s stool smell worse than usual. The smell is often strong and putrid and it is often related to the food we eat, but it can indicate more serious health problems.
There are many causes of foul-smelling stool and the digestive system is usually involved. Malabsorption of food due to a lack of digestive enzymes or gut motility can be a culprit. Or, it could be caused by an infection of the intestinal tract. The following are some causes of foul-smelling stool:
Due to malabsorption:
Due to infection:
Due to medications and supplements:
The symptoms that may occur alongside foul-smelling stools include:
Your doctor will take a history of presenting symptoms to diagnose the cause of your foul-smelling stool. They will need to know the consistency of the stool and when it began smelling abnormal. The use of any new medications or foods will be addressed as well as everything leading up to your symptoms.
A stool sample may then be taken to assess for bacteria, viruses, or parasitic infections. Your doctor will also check for the presence of blood, which may help narrow down the cause.
While it’s impossible to completely get rid of stool odor, you can at least make sure they smell normal. Herbal remedies exist that are known to effectively deal with the problem and act as cleansing agents, including milk thistle and Galium aparine. Other herbs include cascara sagrada or bearberry, seed husks, and marshmallow, which help to flush out the colon.
The following are tips to help prevent foul smelling stools:
If these natural methods are not working for your case of foul-smelling stool, it is advised to seek the aid of a medical professional.