What Are Rotten Stools Doing To You?
by Dr. David Klein
Director, Colitis & Crohn’s Health Recovery Center
This article was adapted from the 4th edition of “Self Healing Colitis & Crohn’s” by Dr. David Klein.
“Stool” is a term describing the waste matter excreted from the bowel through the rectum, ranging in consistency from formed and hard (constipated) to watery (diarrhea). Stool characteristics are indicative of our diet, the effectiveness of our digestion and our level of health. Healthy people generally evacuate nontoxic stools, and bowel movements are barely noticeable and never unpleasant. Toxic stools are blatantly offensive to our senses, and their evacuation is typically difficult and tiring. Few people have ever eaten and lived healthfully (as taught in “Self Healing Colitis & Crohn’s” and in other Natural Hygiene literature) and experienced healthy evacuation of nontoxic stools.
Toxic stools emit gases which are odiferously foul and offensive. Foul fecal gases or flatulence indicate that food has not digested completely; rather, it has decomposed (rotted or fermented) in the gut. The odors produced by decomposing nitrogenous proteins are characterized as “putrid.” Odors produced by decomposing carbohydrates are characterized as “fermentive.” The chemical byproducts (liquid and gaseous) of this rotting action include: ammonias, sulfides, histamine, tyramine, cadaverine, putrescine, indoles, skatoles and purines. Hydrogen sulfide, also referred to as “swamp gas,” has the characteristic rotten egg odor which is common in sewer pipes. This gas is so corrosive that it eats through concrete piping, necessitating protective plastic liners. Imagine what it does to human flesh! All of these harsh chemicals irritate the bowel, leading to inflammation and, under chronic extreme conditions, the destruction and genetic alteration of cells, leading to polyps, tumors and cancer. They also circulate in the body causing systemic damage in a process called “autointoxication” which goes hand-in-hand with poor health. When the body’s organs of elimination and self-purification mechanisms (known as the “immune system”) are overwhelmed with toxins, we experience body odors and distress, which can lead to and irritable bowel (IBS), colitis, Crohn’s disease and bowel ulcers in some people. Tens of millions of people suffer with these afflictions today.
Diarrhea is an intelligent response enacted by the body when the contents of the bowels have reached a critically toxic level. The body sends water into the bowel and directs nerve energy to the bowel muscle to trigger peristaltic motion. Rapid evacuation of liquid feces is a sign of vigorous health-restorative detoxification. When the body enacts diarrhea, it is getting rid of threatening toxins. We want the body to get rid of the offending matter; we do not want to suppress diarrhea with medicines–that only adds to our toxic overload while further enervating our organism, extending the time it will take to heal.
When we have diarrhea, we must discontinue eating all fatty foods, rest, drink plenty of water and clear, fresh fruit juice, eat only health-supporting foods and allow the body to complete its housecleaning job. In cases of prolonged or extreme diarrhea with inflammatory bowel disease, special care and guidance are required. Each person needs a personalized healing plan to safely resolve his or her illness. In all cases of diarrhea, keeping oneself well-hydrated with water and fresh-made, non-acidic juices is essential. If diarrhea is severe, your physician and a Hygienic Doctor, such as the author, should be consulted and blood testing should be performed to assess electrolyte levels.
Constipated stools are compact, low in water content and held together by mucous. If they float, they contain entrained gas. Constipation is a sign of incorrect eating and a lack of nerve energy needed for regular evacuation, that is, the bowel muscle is enervated to the point of inability to easily move digesta through the bowel. Many lifestyle factors can contribute to enervation of the bowel, as discussed later. In general, the top three factors are: 1. diets with foods too low in fiber and water content; 2. overeating cooked starchy and fatty foods; and 3. a deficiency of rest and sleep. Chronically compacted stools lead to irritation and, in some cases, disfigured colons (prolapses, hernias, strictures) and inflammatory bowel disease because the fecal material stagnates, decomposes and its movement is difficult, fatiguing the bowel, rather than easily passing within 24 hours. The diet and healthful lifestyle program taught herein teaches the basic principles which enable the body to correct virtually all bowel problems and resume its normal shape and vitality.
As discussed in detail in “Self Healing Colitis & Crohn’s,” there are several causes of food decomposition in the gut. They mainly fall under the categories of: 1. eating foods which are inherently indigestible; 2. eating foods in incompatible combinations; 3. eating too frequently; 4. eating when tired; 5. incomplete chewing.
When we eat incorrectly, exceeding the limitations of our digestive enzyme secretions and mechanical processing capabilities, food decomposes in the gut, as in a compost heap. That is, bacteria, yeast and, in some cases, parasites consume the nutrients and excrete wastes. This is nature’s way of digesting or breaking down wastes, purifying our inner environment and recycling organic matter. The warm, moist, nutrient-rich environment of the bowel is an ideal fermenter of food residues. Weightwise, the bacteria content of the stools of people who eat mostly undigestible food matter is typically greater than the quantity of the solid residue itself. The higher the quantity of indigestible wastes in our bowels, the greater the population of bacteria and waste byproducts (gas, liquid and solid residues). The pH of toxic stool is typically very acidic, indicating acid waste overload, as evidenced by rectal burning sensations. All these are undesirable and totally avoidable conditions. We need to eat in a way so that everything digests completely. We do not want to eat indiscriminately, creating the conditions for microorganisms to digest our food because that always results in poor health.
Ironically and sadly, most of what humans eat passes through the body undigested, poisoning their bodies and the environment. Human excrement is such an environmental pollution burden that humans have resorted to building sewage treatment plants. These costly plants serve to digest food residue which humans have not digested.
In wastewater engineering, the pollution strength of the sewage entering sewage treatment plants is measured as “biochemical oxygen demand” and expressed in units of “BOD.” This quantifies the amount of oxygen required by aerobic microorganisms to decompose the degradable organic matter in a sample of sewage. The influent BOD is always very high. As such, the sewage is a pollution hazard and, if discharged untreated, would defile or even kill all life in a natural body of water. Within this scenario, bacteria and other microorganisms feast on the nutrients, multiply and pull oxygen out of the water, suffocating aquatic life while releasing metabolic wastes (swamp gas, etc.).
Sewage treatment plants employ aeration treatment processes wherein bacteria populations greatly multiply, consume the nutrients in the wastestream and reduce the solids volume. The remaining still-toxic sewage solids (“sludge”) are separated out of the wastewater stream and typically sent to a landfill. The remaining wastewater is clarified, disinfected and discharged with a greatly-reduced BOD to the environment (creeks, rivers, oceans, meadows, agricultural fields, etc.).
Septic tanks are sometimes used for individual home sewage treatment, employing an anaerobic rather than aerobic bacterial decomposition process, discharging BOD-reduced wastewater into the ground. In perspective, the home septic tank and the costly, inefficient and obnoxious sewage treatment systems are only necessary when humans eat foods for which they are not biologically suited. If we ate correctly, we would not need mechanical sewage treatment equipment to do the digestion job we were designed to completely accomplish in good health and with nontoxic results. Completely digested food from a healthy body in turn produces good “humanure” fertilizer for plant life. (Of course, “humanure” recycling is not entirely practical for city populations.)
When we eat correctly of only foods to which we are biologically adapted, as taught herein, the result is complete digestion, effortless evacuation, neutral or no stool or body odors, little or no flatulence and freedom from bowel disease. It is generally healthy to have one bowel movement per meal. For most healthy people, two or three bowel movements per day is normal. Bowel movements occur in seconds with no urgency and barely any sensation. Healthy stools are moist, formed and of fine, uniform consistency; they sink and crumble in toilet water with no signs of undigested pieces of food, mucous or blood; the pH is within the 6.7 to 7.0 range; their color resembles the food which was eaten in the previous meal, only slightly darker; there is no straining, long and difficult waiting, cramping, spasming, discomfort, offensive odor, stickiness, need for air deodorizers, shame or unpleasantness; there is minimal need for toilet paper and little or no gas. From a wholistic viewpoint, the end product of our digestion tells the story of how well we have eaten, digested our food and supported our health.
After you have detoxified, healed and mastered your dietary and lifestyle habits, the bowel will remain healthy and free of irritation and inflammation, and you will have the opportunity to enjoy optimal health and happiness in a clean and sweet-smelling body. You will feel well inside knowing that you’ve fully met the conditions required for everlasting health. That is our natural state of being and the happy, lasting outcome of healthful living.
I will be glad to assist you and yours on the self-healing path. Please visit my website and feel free to contact me. My book, “Self Healing Colitis & Crohn’s,” can be ordered there. It teaches the most successful self-healing program for those with any gut disorder. Over 25,000 people have been helped by this self-healing guidebook.
Wishing you and yours vibrant health and happiness!
Dr. David Klein
Paia, Hawaii, Maui, USA