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What does your poop look like when your body is detoxing?


When your body goes through a detox, you may notice some changes in your bowel movements and stool. Detoxification is the process of removing toxins from the body, and the liver, kidneys, skin, lungs and colon all play a role. As your body works to eliminate toxins, the changes can often be seen in your poop. Keep reading to learn what you should expect and what your poop may look like when your body is detoxing.

What Happens During Detoxification

Detoxification is important for removing harmful substances from your body. Here’s a quick overview of what happens:

  • Your liver filters out toxins and produces bile, which is excreted into the small intestine to help remove wastes.
  • Your kidneys filter the blood and eliminate toxins and excess fluid through urine.
  • Your skin sweats out toxins and waste products.
  • Your lungs exhale toxins like carbon dioxide when you breathe.
  • Your colon eliminates solid waste through bowel movements.

During a detox program, you may consume higher amounts of fiber, drink more fluids, exercise more, or use supplements or herbs to support your body’s natural detoxification systems. This can increase bowel movements and affect stool.

What to Expect in Your Stool

Here are some common changes you may notice in your poop when your body is in detox mode:


Detoxification can stimulate bowel movements and cause you to poop more frequently. This helps eliminate toxins faster. Drinking more fluids and eating more fiber typically increases stool bulk and motility. You may poop multiple times a day.


Your stools may appear loose, soft or watery due to higher fluid intake and fiber. Toxins being excreted can also give stool a looser consistency. Another common detox change is stool color. Toxins leaving the body can cause greenish, yellowish, or foul-smelling stool.

Floaters vs. Sinkers

You may notice stool start to float rather than sink. Floating poop is usually the result of excess gas production from dietary changes. Gas can make stool less dense so it floats. Stool that sinks is considered more normal, but floaters are common during detox.


Some detox programs use herbs or supplements that act as stimulant laxatives, which can cause watery diarrhea or liquid stools. This helps cleanse the bowels forcefully. You may temporarily notice mushy poop texture.

Other Changes

Detoxing can cause bloating, gas or abdominal cramping. Low energy, headaches and mood changes are also common as toxins leave the body. You may also poop out old fecal matter stuck in your intestines. Mucus in stool could indicate the colon cleansing itself.

Specific Types of Detoxification

Different kinds of detox programs will impact your poop in different ways:

Juice Cleanse

Drinking only fruit and vegetable juices for 1-5 days provides nutrients but no fiber. This can result in loose stool or diarrhea initially as fiber intake drops rapidly. After a couple days, you may get constipated as your body excretes fewer waste products.

Liquid Diet

Consuming only clear liquids like water, broths, juices and herbal teas provides minimal solid waste. This may cause abnormally yellow stool from a lack of food coloring agents. Liquid diets can also result in foul-smelling poop.

Fasting Cleanse

Consuming nothing but water for 12-72 hours lets the digestive system rest. You won’t poop at all initially. When you start eating again, expect loose stools or diarrhea as the colon reactivates. Toxins being released can also thin stool consistency.

High-Fiber Cleanse

Loading up on 35+ grams of fiber daily from fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds and whole grains can cause very large, bulky stool. Excess fiber typically makes you poop more often. Stools may temporarily smell worse.

Supplement & Herbal Cleanse

Many herbs, enzymes and supplements are used as colon cleansers and laxatives. Psyllium, flaxseed or bentonite clay can cause gas and bloating. Senna and cascara sagrada act as stimulant laxatives, causing urgency and liquid diarrhea.

When to See a Doctor

Minor changes in your poop during a detox are normal, but contact your doctor if you have:

  • Diarrhea for over 3 days
  • Bloody or black stool
  • Intense cramping or rectal pain
  • No bowel movements for 3+ days
  • Fever over 101 F
  • Dehydration signs like dizziness

These could indicate a medical issue that requires treatment. Chronic diarrhea can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances. Tell your doctor about any detox program you are doing.

Improving Your Detox Experience

You can help prevent excessive bowel issues when detoxing by:

  • Staying hydrated
  • Easing into fiber and dietary changes gradually
  • Avoiding harsh laxatives and stimulants
  • Exercising daily
  • Avoiding gut irritants like coffee, dairy and sugar
  • Taking probiotics to support gut health

Following a balanced, predominantly plant-based diet high in nutrients supports natural detoxification every day without causing GI distress. Work with a nutritionist if you have concerns.

The Bottom Line

When your body is actively working to eliminate toxins, you can expect changes in your poop. Softer, looser stool that may smell fouler and look greenish is common. You’ll likely poop more frequently and may pass old fecal matter. Floating rather than sinking poop can occur. While diarrhea, bloating or constipation may happen temporarily, talk to your doctor if symptoms persist. Drink plenty of fluids and modify your detox methods if bowel issues are problematic.

Summary Table

Type of Detox Common Stool Changes
Juice cleanse Loose stool or constipation
Liquid diet Abnormally yellow stool, foul smell
Fasting cleanse No stool then loose stool or diarrhea
High-fiber cleanse Large, bulky stool
Supplement & herbal cleanse Gas, bloating, urgency, diarrhea

Key Takeaways

  • Detoxification stimulates bowel movements to eliminate toxins and waste.
  • You may poop more often and stool may appear loose, soft, greenish or foul-smelling.
  • Different cleanses impact stool differently, from constipation to diarrhea.
  • Contact your doctor if diarrhea, pain or dehydration occur.
  • Drink fluids, get exercise and gradually ease into detox programs.