2

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Floating Stools

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created October 13, 2010 at 9:17 PM

I've had floating stools ever since I began a high-fat PaNu-style diet - has anyone else? I'll ask my doctor about it next time I go, but I was wondering whether anyone had any insight on the implications of it? Is it something to worry about? I figured it was just a natural side effect of high-fat diet, but now I'm starting to worry. Thanks for any help.

0e395acc856e3353f3f5892e6b09b0e7

(1227)

on November 18, 2011
at 02:36 PM

Girl, where have you been. I've been missing your awesome Aussie comments. I hope you are well. Please come back to the Hacks

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 18, 2011
at 01:26 AM

+1 for a nifty chart! I fit between 3-5 and that was true on SAD, SAD reducing diets and ancestral. 95% floaters. (I'm assuming you don't care, but I'm just so proud!

A6cffe7397214f338ae098613eea6737

(50)

on March 12, 2011
at 08:06 PM

Is it still the case? Or after several months the size got changed?

5de2fffda92c0bf2be7ede10cad55546

(1781)

on October 15, 2010
at 11:07 AM

Yep and yep, no fiber here and haven't eaten any for years. Everything moves along nice and smoothly. You have to remember when you're not eating "indigestible" stuff everything else is mostly digested, hence less wastage to eliminate.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 14, 2010
at 03:15 PM

Many/most people when first switching to lowcarb have constipation or just slower stool movement. But later, the body adapts. It is suspected that natural pushing mechanisms in the gut become lazy on high fiber diets and it takes a bit of time for the gut to remember how to move food along without the fiber. But it's not a myth that low carb causes constipation. It does in many, but not long term.

1f70da0b737e9c6e7679a248f4228a01

on October 14, 2010
at 08:19 AM

In school we were taught about 'fluffy floaters and slimy sinkers' - fluffy floaters being an indicator of a healthy gut. Sounds like your gut flora is happy!

1f70da0b737e9c6e7679a248f4228a01

on October 14, 2010
at 08:17 AM

No stools? Someone's been sucking on the teet of conventional wisdom a little too long... I've done multiple month-long meat-only experiments - my digestion only improved! It turns out some of us run much more efficiently and comfortably without fibre clogging and fermenting in our guts. I know people who have been meat-only for years now - constipation on sa low-fibre diet is a myth, or the constipation is due to other factors, such as low fat intake.

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7 Answers

3
6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on October 14, 2010
at 01:39 AM

Floating stools are usually harmless unless accompanied by other symptoms, such as diarrhea, foul smell, abdominal pain, fever, or abnormal stool color. Symptomatic "floaters" can indicate infection, inflammation, or malabsorption.

Stools usually float due to increased gas content, not increased fat content.

Have you changed your diet recently? A change in diet can cause a temporary surge in gas-producing bowel flora, which can make stools float. Some foods such as cruciferous vegetable (broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage, etc.) have a reputation for being "gas-o-genic."

Bottom line, don't worry about floating stools unless you're having other symptoms.

Ref: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003128.htm

2
095ef76482234d3db444b77d7ed01c29

(2755)

on October 14, 2010
at 12:01 AM

They are supposed to float. Some float, some sink, it's all good as long as it's coming out. Get your fat too low and start passing undigested vegetables...then you've got a problem.

Make sure you are eating enough greens and fiber though, or you will have NO STOOLS. When you go 21 days without a bowel movement like I did way back when, before the current "paleo" information was avaialable and I was just winging it on my own keeping my blood sugar under control by what I ate...you will know the importance of what I'm telling you about greens and fiber.

5de2fffda92c0bf2be7ede10cad55546

(1781)

on October 15, 2010
at 11:07 AM

Yep and yep, no fiber here and haven't eaten any for years. Everything moves along nice and smoothly. You have to remember when you're not eating "indigestible" stuff everything else is mostly digested, hence less wastage to eliminate.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 14, 2010
at 03:15 PM

Many/most people when first switching to lowcarb have constipation or just slower stool movement. But later, the body adapts. It is suspected that natural pushing mechanisms in the gut become lazy on high fiber diets and it takes a bit of time for the gut to remember how to move food along without the fiber. But it's not a myth that low carb causes constipation. It does in many, but not long term.

1f70da0b737e9c6e7679a248f4228a01

on October 14, 2010
at 08:17 AM

No stools? Someone's been sucking on the teet of conventional wisdom a little too long... I've done multiple month-long meat-only experiments - my digestion only improved! It turns out some of us run much more efficiently and comfortably without fibre clogging and fermenting in our guts. I know people who have been meat-only for years now - constipation on sa low-fibre diet is a myth, or the constipation is due to other factors, such as low fat intake.

1
Da3d4a6835c0f5256b2ef829b3ba3393

on November 18, 2011
at 12:40 AM

floating-stools

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 18, 2011
at 01:26 AM

+1 for a nifty chart! I fit between 3-5 and that was true on SAD, SAD reducing diets and ancestral. 95% floaters. (I'm assuming you don't care, but I'm just so proud!

1
Ddb0e3a41f15d69d30677339ccf9c7b6

(513)

on October 14, 2010
at 01:30 AM

No, but my logs have been HUGE since I started eating paleo. I don't have normal-sized poops anymore; they're all of epic proportions. Srsly, I could make a dinosaur blush.

A6cffe7397214f338ae098613eea6737

(50)

on March 12, 2011
at 08:06 PM

Is it still the case? Or after several months the size got changed?

0
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 14, 2010
at 03:47 AM

They say half the dry weight of poo is bacteria. Yeah, I also was wondering how mine could have gotten so much bigger even though I am eating less! I can only guess that maybe there are more kinds of bacteria or more numbers of bacteria in my gut now and/or the poo is more light and fluffy or something. Interesting about the floating though. I have never had this happen before ever. I guess one person's normal is another person's weird.

0
Cacc89096bbbec20ff6904cbbd58e92d

(273)

on October 13, 2010
at 10:27 PM

When I first started paleo I had problems in this area, but found that upping my leafy green consumptio, especially kale and spinach ( which is very fluid in it's nature once inside the body ), help to clear out the excess in a more pleasant way. Also, small amounts of coconut oil, even though they are a fat seem to have alleviated that. Your problem could also have to do with a kind of cleansing, where your body is flushing out anything that was not inline with the paleo diet that you ate long ago and had been stuck in the colon. Some celiacs I know tend to have this problem when they unknowingly encounter gluten, even though they may be on a low fat diet. Also, make sure your getting grass fed, free range meats, and unfarmed seafood for the most part, as it contains less fats and toxins. Hope this helps.

0
1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on October 13, 2010
at 09:20 PM

I think you're right - I get the same thing (more so on very high fat days). Amazingly annoying when you have to flush the toilet multiple times....sorry if that is TMI!

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