It is something we all much do, some with more urgency than others. Some may even think it comes out of other body parts, and for some it can be verbal, for others, no joke it can ooze out of their skin in the form of toxic vapors.
Poop, what is it really? A load of sh.....? Yes, and no. It is in fact quite a complex make up of what the body either doesn't need or can't process. This includes:
It is important for this waste be removed from the body to reduce the risk of toxic overload, and the cells of the bowel having prolonged contact with potential contaminants and cancer promoting compounds.
Poop efficiency is dependent on a number of different factors and if one is out of balance then the body may, or may not be able to compensate. This is important to note, and if there are any change in bowel habits over a period of time, it is essential to speak with your GP or the Gut Foundation may be a good start.
What makes a good poop? Anyone who has worked with me would of been asked about the frequency, color, flotation, or smell. Why, becuase each of these tells us something. For instance,
Nutrients - they are the building blocks of all things. Nutrients are grouped in to 6 groups, and each nutrient has its own essential role. Some provide energy - the macro-nutrients or Carbohydrates, Fats and Protein.
Vitamins & minerals supports the body, to function, give shape, movement and energy.
By definitian, vitamins are organic compounds that our bodies use, in very small amounts, for a variety of metabolic processes. Translate this into every day words and we have - vitamins are naturally made chemicals that we use to make our body works. This may seem like a vague description, but you are very familiar with them. Vitamin B12, C, E, K, D Biotin, etc.
Vitamin levels and quality is dependent on the health of the plant, access of quality (plant) food, air, water, sunlight and nurture.
Minerals on the other hand are literally particles of matter that come off the periodic table - Calcium, Magnesium, Manganese, Zinc, etc. They are all essential in the body. The obvious is calcium, silicia, magnesium for bones, but you may not be aware, that Zinc, combined with protein, and Vit C is essential to create the collagen that keeps the bone strong and together.
Minerals are very much dependent on the quality of the soil; the amount of those minerals present where the plant is growing, the plan't health to absorb and package the minerals up. For instance, Magnesium is a bound with in the chlorophyll unit in the green parts of the plant.
If I was to list all the roles of the vitamins and minerals, it would be a text book length email. For a comprehensive look at what each of the micro-nutrients do.
Some Vitamins and minerals are best found in animal products such as Zinc, Iron, and B12. This is not to say that people who do not eat meat don't get enough, it means they need to be aware of the plant sources for these nutrients.
Other points of interest is Vit D. It is needed in the immune system as a regulator, healthy bones, Calcium absorption, caring and use in the body. It is created in the body when we are exposed to sunlight but with a few limiting requirements: our kidneys, liver, and gastric cells that manufacture the Vitamin must be working; we are to have at least 10 minutes of skin and eye exposure (no sunglasses) in summer and 30 minutes in winter. Australia is recorded to be one of the countries in the world with Vit D deficiency, yet we have more than enough sunlight. Why? We cover up, stay inside during working hours, wear sunglasses and may not have a healthy cell line to manufacture this critical vitamin. Could also be due to the obsession with low fat dairy products and avoidance of even healthy fats for decades.
On the upside, Vit D can also be absorbed from foods such as dairy products (full cream), meats, eggs as it is a fat soluble vitamin, it is carried and absorbed with fat molecules.
Deficiencies do occur, even in our very wealthy and food oversupply nation. It seems paradoxical , but it does occur. How? A few reasons.
This is a big one. Not only because our culture is so focused on getting people out and about, but for what the various types of movement can do. For many, once they get into the routine of moving, it is a pleasure the body misses it. For those who are starting to think about adding, changing or increasing, it can be a matter of the mind, and not only the body.
So, lets look at the big picture changes that happen when we move. The most obvious is that we have the opportunity to go, do or reach for something different, whether that is to go to the shops,play sport, or walk; reach for washing on/off the line, or relax with stretches. Each different type of movement creates a different reaction in the body. It activates the vascular system - blood; lymphatic system - see below; hormone and neural systems; respiratory - breathing and the immune systems. Who would of thought? :)
Let me keep it basic, there are several texts on the market if you wish to have the nitty gritty.
So, in a nutshell, the bottom line for exercise is:
A dietitian with an interest in mind, body, skill development and empowering people to help themselves. After living a lifetime in the first 40, it is now time take it easier and let things be and help others get their their 'life'.
All information shared on the Healthy Eats site is purely for general interest. If at any stage you feel the information is relevant to you and your health it is strongly recommended you speak with your health specialist. Healthy Eats and its employees do not accept any responsibility for misunderstanding what is presented here, and it does not replace the care of your Doctor or Allied Health Professional.