29 answers

Green Stools? What Do I Do...

My 4 year old son has had nothing but soft green stools the past few weeks. He hasn't had a normal brown stool in a really long time. He says his tummy hurts in the a.m. every now and then but I usually give him some breakfast and he seems to do better so I chalk it up to being hungry, but now I'm wondering if he may be having problems. We eat healthy( I have a gluten free, lactose free diet). We eat a good variety of everything and NO fried foods or fast food. I would have it checked out but we do not have good health coverage and we would need to pay up front...we don't have that kind of money. What is your input? Is this something serious?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

WOW! Thank you so much for all your help. He does eat yogurt with blueberries and blackberries almost every a.m., so I'm going to chalk it up to that. Since I sent this request, I've had him stop the yogurt and berries for a bit to evaluate a change in stools. Thanks so much!!

Featured Answers

L.- does he eat fruit snacks? My kids always have green poop when they eat fruit roll ups, fruit chews, fruit snacks. I don;t allow them any more and I can always tell when they got on eform the neighbor because...loe and behold there is green poop in the potty.

My daughter has the same thing. Green poop is especially smelly too!!! Her pediatrician said that it's just the rate at which her body was processing the food. The food doesn't mix with the bile for long, and the bile is what gives it the brown color. She suggested that I feed her foods that take longer to digest. Rice works very well with my daughter (not the minute rice, use the one that takes 20 minutes), and good fiber foods. Good luck!

This is nothing to worry about at all. It is normal for kids to have green poop sometimes. It is just the body cleaning itself out. Sometimes it will only last a few days other times a week or two but there is nothing wrong. My kids still have that sometimes and they are a little older and the doctor said it is just the body flushing out. Don't worry any he will be fine.
D.

I am 31 and have been married for almost 12 yrs. My husband and I have 3 boys ages 10,7, and 4.

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I wouldn't worry. I bet it's just something he's eating, dark veggies and fruit make strange color stool. This summer we've gotten some unusual things from a farmers market - purple potatoes, black rasperries, etc and my kids poop is greenish blue sometimes...and we eat tons of blueberries!
You don't sound like the type of person to feed your kids JUNK like purple popsicles, koolaid, and other colored foods! And good for you for that!! Your kids are probably very healthy.

green stools is usually just caused from a food that was ate not something serious but if you are concerned there are nurse lines you can call for advice for free!!! like vna(visiting nurse association) vpa(visiting physicians association) 1-800-homevisit or even metrohealth nurseline (24hours) ###-###-####

We have only had green stool for two reasons...Virus and Food Dye. Popsicles, powerade, etc. will cause green stool. Hope this helps!

L.- does he eat fruit snacks? My kids always have green poop when they eat fruit roll ups, fruit chews, fruit snacks. I don;t allow them any more and I can always tell when they got on eform the neighbor because...loe and behold there is green poop in the potty.

Hi L., Has he had purple popsicles or flavored drinks? They can turn the stool green. Good Luck N. L.

Yes - check his food first. I know that the kids yougurt makes my son have some crazy colored stool. So does things like seaweed.

My son eats very health also and most hte time his stools are more of a green color than a brown color. His also changes with what he eats (blue icing is known to change his poop blue on his birthday, etc.) He's 5, and his doctor said as long as there are no other changes, he continues to gain weight and grow then he's fine.

I try not to give too much Kool-Aid, and from your request, I gather that you don't either. But, if my kids do get some, they get the green stools. It might just be something they are eating. Check that out first.
Good luck.

My daughter has the same thing. Green poop is especially smelly too!!! Her pediatrician said that it's just the rate at which her body was processing the food. The food doesn't mix with the bile for long, and the bile is what gives it the brown color. She suggested that I feed her foods that take longer to digest. Rice works very well with my daughter (not the minute rice, use the one that takes 20 minutes), and good fiber foods. Good luck!

I have heard that mucus and snot can make stools green... so if he's having difficulty with his allergies or a cold or whatnot the added drainage would turn the stools green. Although I am not a Dr. and that knowledge was passed onto me by my mom. Also different foods might be contributing to that. I poop maroon after I juice beets! :)
So my real advice would be to maybe just take him to see his Dr. I would highly doubt that this is anything serious since there's no sign of blood in the stool... It'll make you feel better. But I'm sure there's a simple explanation.

Good luck!

Is he taking vitimins? Does he eat alot of foods with Iron? Iron in large amounts turn your poop green, I know that every time I eat spinach, mine is green for a day or so.
(Iron Rich Foods
-Beef, Pork, Lamb
-Green Leafy Vegetables: Spinach, Asparagus, Broccoli, Collard Greens, Mustard Greens, Kale, Turnip Greens, Parsley, Cabbage
-Certain fortied foods: Cereals, Oatmeal, Pasta, Rice, Grits
-Liver, Tofu, Barley, Fish: Tuna
-Potato

Foods High In Iron
-Salmon, Shrimp, Tuna, Oysters, Clams, and most kinds of seafood.
-Most kind of Dried Beans: Lima Beans, Kidney Beans, Navy Beans, Soy Beans, Chick Beans, Pinto Beans, Black Eye Beans
-Nuts: Almonds, Cashews, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Sesame, Tahini
-Dried Fruits: Apricots, Rasins, Dates - Prunes, Figs
-Turkey, Chicken, Egg Yolks)

Green poop can be a variety of things...
is it solid or more of a diarrhea?
Green diarrhea can be from Salmonella, Giardia, Gastroenteritis, an Intestinal disorder...

Some cow milk forumlas can cause it aswell..

I am assuming that since you said you eat a good diet, he isnt getting any colored drinks.
If you mix your own gatorade, using too much of the powder can turn poop or pee colors. (my sister mixed blue gatorade for her and her son, she missread the instructions and used double the powder mix... they both peed blue for 3 days)

I would suggest taking him to the doctor since he is complaining of stomach pains atleast once a day. If need be, take him to your local ER. They have to treat him and you can pay at a later date or monthly.
Better safe than sorry.

NOt that you probably give your child cotten candy but blue cotton candy will make green stool, is he on any medication for anything? Sometimes different meds can make stool/urine different color.. I once was on a URI medication and it made my urine neon green.. seriously ... it looked like toxic chemicals coming out

Hi There
If this is not associated with any other symptoms than it could be nothing to worry about, but since you mentioned that his tummy hurts in the morning time, I would seek a doctor's advice. It could be nothing but I would not speculate. Try to call first and ask the doctor if you still need to come in.
Hope all is ok with your little one.

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Blue or purple fluids can cause green stools. Could it be koolaid, juice, popsicles, jello, or something that he's eating often that's colored? Unless it actually turns to a watery consistency I'd say keep an eye on him.

Anything that he eats or drinks that is purple will turn his stool green.

i have this issue with my sons, i asked the doctor about it and she said that it was probably somthing they ate. i have changed their diet around and have not found a specific cause. I have tried to research it but i could not find much. Bile is green so that may have somthing to do with it.

there's a website WRONGDIAGNOSIS.COM & PDRHEALTH.COM when i worked in a hospital before we moved here, we used both of those websites. I'll be praying it's nothing serious. God be with you & yours.

This is nothing to worry about at all. It is normal for kids to have green poop sometimes. It is just the body cleaning itself out. Sometimes it will only last a few days other times a week or two but there is nothing wrong. My kids still have that sometimes and they are a little older and the doctor said it is just the body flushing out. Don't worry any he will be fine.
D.

I am 31 and have been married for almost 12 yrs. My husband and I have 3 boys ages 10,7, and 4.

HI L.,

I don't know if your son is sick or not, but the soft, green stool reminded me of something that we went through with my son who is 2.5 years old now. We started taking him to a babysitters when he was 18 months old and soon after his poop started turning strange colors. It freaked me out beyond belief. He never had a fever or complained of anything hurting, but then again he was only 18 months. Well, we ended up taking a sample of his stool to the doctors for analysis and found out that it was overwhelmed with food dyes. The babysitter was feeding him 3 packs of friut snacks/day. His little body was not able to absorb all of that food dye and therefore his body was expelling it. Needless to say we spent a great deal of money for something that shouldn't have been an issue in the first place. He still has a sensitivity to green and blue food dyes, but it doesn't seem to put him in any pain. The doctor said he may or may not grow out of it and just keep an eye on him. We just limit the exposure. He doesn't need a ton of friut snacks or frosting anyway. I hope this help. As I said, I don't know if your child is sick or not. I just wanted to share my experience.

Would you be in the Cincinnati Ohio area by chance? I know from my bad heath that University Hospital has many clinic and might have one for children or maybe children's hospital. At University if you live outside the corp limits of Cincinnati but in Hamilton County there is a tax levey that can and does pay for medical bills. It paid for my quad by pass surgery and my on going care for diabetes and also my meds only run to $3 per scrip. Give them a call if your in the area. It sounds like a medical issue that needs attention.

My DD has been eating lots of blueberries also, and it always turns her stool green. I agree with everyone, check to see what blue / purple foods he's eating.

A lot of ifferent things could caue this. Anything from something very dark purple to what may appear to be black. Black jelly beans, Blueberry vitamins are just a few that I know of.

I know that I get green stools when I eat or drink things with certain food dyes in them, especially if I drink purple gatorade. Perhaps he has started consuming things with food dyes?

L.,
We went blueberry picking last week, so my son has been eating a ton of blueberries lately...this has lead to his stool being greenish...that might be what you're experiencing.

I would agree with the other posts that it's most likely due to a food he has been eating. My kids love yogurt and that turns their stools all sorts of different colors. If you can't trace it to something in his diet though, our pediatrician told me that green stools "can" indicate blood (we had an issue with our son when he was only a few months old, he had green stools).

Check what food colors your son is eating. If my girls get too much blue, green, or purple colored food, it changes their stool. We learned this after we had a blue cookie monster cake!! It is amazing what food colors added can do to a body.

Does he eat anything with blue food coloring in it? Like fruit snacks or Captain Crunch or blue cake frosting? That turns stools soft green. My son turned 6 a couple weeks ago and he had neon green stools for a week due to the blue frosting on his cake!

Perhaps look at what he's been eating and drinking lately. Has he had foods or drinks with dye in them?

Red dyes and blue dyes can make the poop look different. Has he had any ice pops, kool-aid, grape juice, etc?

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