Bristol poo chart shows what healthy poo should look like
Bristol poo chart shows what healthy poo should look like. You should aim for 3 or 4.

Bristol Poo Chart

Which is your poo?

The Bristol stool chart was developed by doctors as a tool for use when discussing their patients’ stools.

The Bristol Stool Scale or Bristol Stool Chart or Meyers Scale is a medical aid developed at the University of Bristol.

The Bristol Poo Chart is a useful way to categorise poo.  Regularity, soft texture and being able to be pass poo with ease are all important for your comfort and well being.  A good digestion also absorbs nutrients better.  There is a bit more to poo than the experience of passing faeces and healthily absorbing of nutrients from the gut. The actual makeup of the bacteria and other bugs in your gut’s microbiome is now understood to play a very big role in health and disease as well as the structure and lubrication of poo.

Things you can do to Improve digestion

Obviously there is a lot more to poo than the shape but the right poo with the right form tends to be much healthier than those at either end of the Bristol poo scale.  Daily variation if you have eaten different foods or been on medication is normal.  The poo at either end of the scale indicates poor gut flora.  If your poo is consistently at either end of the scale then you should be considering helping your digestion by improving your gut’s microbiome. Try adding probiotic foods like live yoghurt, kefir, or raw sauerkraut; and including prebiotic foods which include certain sorts of fibre, and polysaccharides like inulin, artichokes, ground linseed or linseed tea that develop good structure and healthy gut flora.

The health of your poo is important. Your poo is a sign of the health of your digestion a process that underlies all the processes in your body.

Getting your poo right is important for health benefits

Your poo is a complex product of your food, your digestive juices and enzymes and your gut flora.  You can alter the consistency and regularity of your poo by changing your food, which in turn changes your gut flora. You can also change your poo by the nutrient content in your diet. Correct nutrition enables your gut wall to react with the right digestive juices, lubricants and strong regular peristaltic movements.

A comfortable digestion can be as simple as a daily helping of ground linseed

So much of our health depends on what goes on in our gut, from creating and absorbing nutrients to our immune system that it is very important to get it right.

For most people, when their poo is better they feel better!  The form of your stools (poo) depends partly on the time it spends in your colon. The ideal or normal stool is comfortable to pass and indicates regularity, colon cleansing and health.

Good poo is a sign of good health; it is also a lot more comfortable. Linseed is an excellent source of the fibre that is ancan be an aid to a healthy digestion. At a whopping 30% fibre linseed is amazing but even better approximately 10% of that fibre is soluble fibre which actually helps grow good bacteria and other beneficial gut bugs.  Growing these good bugs produces greater volume, which is important for comfort and regularity.

More help with the digestion

A helping of linseed can be just a bowl or Flax Farm porridge or muesli, a couple of heaped tablespoons of ground linseed  and this can be enough for some people. For others needing a bit more help look to increasing greens such as spinach,  artichokes, apples, pears, raspberries, other fruit and vegetables, ground or whole seeds and other fibrous foods. Also consider reducing or cutting out cereal grain foods, sugary foods, fried foods.

A note of caution

It takes time for the gut to adjust to changes in the diet which for some people can drastically speed up or slow down the digestion. So any changes to the diet and introduction of new foods should be done slowly,  If your digestion is very sensitive start by incorporating just a pinch of a new food on the first day, then have a day without and try two pinches the next day and so on. Increasing gradually and build up daily to proper helpings over a period of a couple of weeks or a month.

Bowl of Gluten-free Seedy Linseed Porridge/Muesli
Bowl of fibre-rich Gluten-free Seedy Linseed Porridge/Muesli

 

 

Flax Farm’s range of fibre rich foods include:

  • Whole linseed
  • Ground linseed
  • Linseed porridge and muesli (including gluten-free)
  • Flaxjacks

Food rich in fibre made from Flax Farm linseed.

Food rich in fibre made from Flax Farm freshly cold-milled linseed.