What Causes Green Stools In Infants?

Baby poop can say a lot about the overall health of a baby. The color, texture, consistency of baby stools can even take the new parents by surprise. From newborn to a few months old, the color of the poop in infants can change many times. This is because the fledgling digestive system in infants is undergoing a development process every passing day.

Green Stools in infants

is often heard of. It is a sign of a disturbed digestion process and it certainly helps to know the causes of the green color of stools. It is mostly seen in breast fed infants. In this article, we will look into the causes of green stools in babies.

Green Stools in Infants

What causes green stools in infants?

  • Green stools in babies is a sign that the baby is getting a supply of excess lactose (lactose is the naturally occurring sugar in milk). This is caused by something known as foremilk/hindmilk imbalance. Foremilk is the thin milk that is drawn out first when the baby starts the feeding process. Gradually the hindmilk, the thicker and richer version of the breast milk is received. The same happens when the baby is switched too quickly from one breast to another before the hind milk from the first breast could reach him.
  • Abundant supply of the foremilk which is thinner, lower in fat and high in sugar disturbs the baby’s gentle digestive system. It acts on the digestive tract stimulating it and causing the quick transit of the fluid. This produces runny, frothy and green colored stools. The excess lactose undergoes increased fermentation resulting in colic, intestinal gas and acidic stools. Low calorie foremilk is digested easily. Hence, the baby feels hungry more frequently. So to let the baby latch on one breast and release it on his own whenever he is satisfied is one of the basic tenets of lactation.
  • Green stools could also indicate a sensitivity to something the baby is being given other than breast milk. It could be medications or some constituent in the formula for formula fed infants.
  • It could also be lactose intolerance where the baby does not produce lactase, which is the enzyme required to process the sugar lactose.
  • The infant may have food allergy whereby the infant may be allergic to the proteins found in milk. The production of Immunoglobulin antibodies (IgE) may cause the mast cells to release histamine and may trigger the digestive system in an unfavorable way and cause green stools and diarrhea.
  • Teething or introducing solids can cause also stimulate the baby’s digestive system and cause them.
  • Lastly,

    green stools in infants

    may be caused by the percolation of any irritant from the mother’s diet through breast milk.

It is definitely a signal of an abnormal reaction on the part of the digestive system. A sporadic occurrence here and there should not be alarming. However, in case of persistent green colored poop in babies, the physician should be contacted without any delay.


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *