Do you ever have scruffy looking poops? Their texture may even resemble an old paint roller.

There’s a reason why bowel movements can sometimes have a rather disheveled appearance. 

“An adequate amount of water and fiber are key components of both stool form and shape,” says Nadeem Baig, MD, a board certified gastroenterologist and hepatologist at Monmouth Gastroenterology, a division of Allied Digestive Health.

“If either part is lacking or insufficient in one’s diet, this can lead to stool not having a normal log-like shape.

“Thus, stool can sometimes appear scruffy.

“Also, accelerated intestinal transit due to diarrheal illness, medications or stress would not give stool adequate time to take a normal form and shape as it moves through the colon.”

If you’ve noticed a scruffy look in stools that otherwise seem well-formed or like logs or sausages, this would very likely be due to a higher fiber intake.

Fiber is a natural stool softener. In high enough dietary amounts from natural sources such as strawberries, blueberries, bananas and greens, it can make stools very soft and … scruffy.

This rough appearance is NOT a possible sign of a disease process.

Dr. Baig’s specialties include gastrointestinal cancers and liver disease, plus gallbladder, biliary tract and pancreatic disorders. He is an assistant clinical professor of medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.  


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