The things to notice about your bowel movements are:

  • frequency: you should have 1-3 bowel movements / day (less than this means you have constipation!)
  • diameter: your stool should be 2-3 inches in diameter
  • shape & texture: your stool should be long & smooth, and it should hold together
  • odor: your stool should not have an overpowering stench; believe it or not, your stool should not be very smelly!
  • composition: your stool should neither sink nor float in the water, but rather, it should bob; a bobbing stool indicates a healthy composition of 75% water
  • color: any shade of brown is considered normal, and green poop is okay if you eat a lot of green vegetables.  Any other color is generally a bad sign and you should consult your practitioner immediately!
  • transit time: it should take 12-24 hours for food to travel from your mouth, through your digestive system, and into your toilet
  • evacuation time: while sitting on your toilet, it should take about 5 minutes for your bowel movements to complete

A very useful infographic is available here: