Stool concern: Diet affected?
Tuesday 07 June 2005
I have read that loose, pale-coloured stools are a sign of fat malabsorption. I have had consistently yellow, foul-smelling stools (with undigested bits in them) for as long as I can remember. Also, after going to the toilet I often feel nauseous. What could be the cause? Does it mean that my body is deficient in "good fats" and vitamins?
Dr Fred Kavalier answers your health question:
When the intestine is unable to properly digest and absorb fats, the stools become pale, bulky and smelly. They usually float in the lavatory pan, and are difficult to flush away. Sometimes it is even possible to see floating oil droplets in the toilet water. Fat malabsorption can be caused by many different problems. If the pancreas or liver are not working properly, in conditions such as cystic fibrosis and liver disease, the intestine is unable to break down and absorb food. In conditions such as coeliac disease, which is caused by an abnormal reaction to wheat and other foods that contain gluten, the intestine loses its ability to absorb nutrients. If people with coeliac disease avoid all foods containing gluten, the intestine recovers and regains its ability to absorb food normally. Some vitamins, especially A, D and K, are fat-soluble vitamins: if you are not absorbing fat properly, you can become deficient in these vitamins. You need to have tests to see if you are suffering from malabsorption. If you are, then the cause needs to be identified and treated. Your first stop should be your GP. The next stop should be a gastroenterologist.
Please mail your questions for Dr Fred to email@example.com. He regrets that he is unable to respond personally to questions.
Arsenal 1 Everton 1: Substitute equalises with six minutes to go
food + drinkMichelin-starred Tom Sellers on being this year's hottest property
booksGeese, gorillas, grandads... and growing up
tvParents (and kids) rejoice! A new wave of fantastic family entertainment is here
food + drinkHow one grocery e-tailer is gearing up for the Yuletide rush
food + drink
Life & Style blogs
- 1 Hundreds arrested as Canadian police smash worldwide paedophile ring
- 2 Sherlock series 3: Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman provide teasers for the biggest comeback in British television
- 3 The man who made Femen: New film outs Victor Svyatski as the mastermind behind the protest group and its breast-baring stunts
- 4 Mass murder in the Middle East is funded by our friends the Saudis
- 5 Japan cracks down on leaks after scandal of Fukushima nuclear power plant
- < Previous
- Next >
£80000 - £100000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Senior C++ De...
£25000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C++ Server Dev...
£300 - £350 per day: Harrington Starr: Leading Electronic Trading Software Ven...
£23999 - £32001 per annum + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: An independent ac...