Medically reviewed by Youssef (Joe) Soliman, MD — written by Jenna Fletcher — updated on November 4, 2021

Undigested food in a who stool is not generally a reason for concern. The human body cannot fully break down high-fiber foodstuffs or foodstuffs with tough shells, such as sweetcorn. Consequently, these may pass through the digestive device unchanged.

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When undigested food in the stool occurs v a readjust in bowel habits, load loss, or diarrhea, this may signal an underlying problem that needs medical attention.

In this article, we look at factors why undigested food may show up in stool and when a person should speak through a doctor.


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There room some factors why the body could not fully digest foods that execute not cause concern.

Undigested food can show up in the stool if over there is material in food the is indigestible, such together cellulose in some high-fiber foods. This might be due to a person not chewing the food well or the food containing shells or skin that the body’s natural enzymes cannot rest down.

It could likewise happen if food passes too quickly through the digestive system, for example, if the person has a problem such together Crohn’s disease, which causes inflammation in the digestive system. The can additionally happen if someone has gastric surgery or a bowel resection.

High-fiber foods

Fiber describes the indigestible part of tree foods. A high-fiber diet can have numerous benefits, consisting of keeping the digestive mechanism healthy and keeping bowel activities regular.

When a person eats high-fiber foods, it is typical for some undigested material to show up in the stool due to the fact that the human body cannot fully break down the hard material.

Fiber also speeds up a person’s bowel motions by adding bulk come the stool, which motivates the intestinal wall surfaces to move. This motion pushes food through the digestive tract.

If food move too quickly through the cradle system, a human being may not totally digest some foods.

Certain foods items are an ext likely 보다 others to be an overwhelming to totally digest. These foods include:

seedsvegetable skinscertain grains

Foods such together corn often remain partly undigested. Corn has an external shell made of one indigestible material called cellulose. The human body digests the material inside the the corn and expels the tough outer casing in the stool.

High-fiber foods are helpful for many people. Learn an ext here.

Eating also quickly

Another unauthorized culprit of undigested food appearing in stool is eating as well quickly. When a person eats also fast and also swallows your food without completely chewing it, food is much more likely come pass with the digestive tract without being fully broken down.

Eating too quickly may pressure digestion come take place too rapidly, resulting in more food not being fully broken down. To prevent this, a person can slow under their eating during meals and chew their food because that longer.


The many common reason of undigested food showing up in stool is fibrous foods, however some medical problems can result in whole or partially digested food appearing in stool. In these cases, a person frequently notices various other symptoms, such together diarrhea or stomach pain.

Medical conditions that may reason undigested food to show up in the stool incorporate the following:

Crohn’s disease

This problem is a kind of inflammatory bowel condition that reasons inflammation in the digestive tract.

Symptoms include:

severe diarrhea

In some cases, undigested food may show up in a who stool.

Learn an ext about Crohn’s disease.

Celiac disease

This is an autoimmune disorder where the body cannot digest the protein known as gluten, which wake up in wheat, barley, and other grains.

Symptoms include:

diarrhealactose intolerance

Some human being may an alert undigested food in their stool.

Learn more about celiac disease.

Pancreatic insufficiency

A human being with pancreatic insufficiency lacks enzymes in the pancreas, making it tough to failure food. This might lead to undigested food showing up in stool.

Symptoms the this problem include:

abdominal discomfort and bloatingweight lossfatty stools

What is exocrine pancreatic insufficiency?

Lactose intolerance

If a person’s digestive device cannot failure the protein in milk and also dairy, it may suggest lactose intolerance.

Symptoms include:

bloating and also gasdiarrheanausea and vomitingabdominal pain“growling” in the stomach

Undigested food could show up in the stool of human being with lactose intolerance.

What is lactose intolerance?

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

IBS is a common condition that affects the large intestine.

Symptoms include:

bloating and also painthe feeling that a bowel motion is unfinished

Some world may also notice undigested food in your stool.

Find out an ext about IBS.

Gastroenteritis, or a “stomach bug”

A stomach bug, stomach flu, or gastrointestinal virus may cause undigested food in the stool as result of food passing quickly through a who system. Other symptoms of a stomach pest include:

bloatingabdominal crampingwatery diarrheavomitingnausea

In most instances of a stomach virus, symptoms will settle in a few days when the virus has actually passed. However, dehydration have the right to quickly become serious. Human being should look for medical assist at as soon as if they or who else has signs the dehydration or experiences:

severe ache or worsening symptomschanges in psychological state or consciousnesssix or more loose stools in a daydiarrhea lasting an ext than 2 days

There is a opportunity that undigested food could appear in the stool.

Find out much more about gastroenteritis.

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A person who notices a many undigested food in their stool need to not problem most that the time, together it is likely to be due to undigested fiber or eating as well quickly.

If someone notices the complying with symptoms to add undigested food in their stool, they must speak with a doctor:

unexplained load lossblood in stoolchanges in bowel habitsloss of manage of bowelschronic diarrheapersistent ab pain or crampingpersistent bloating or gassigns that dehydration, together as raised thirst or lessened urination

If a medical professional suspects that a person has a problem affecting their digestive system, they may order the complying with diagnostic tests: