Sticky Poop (That’s Hard to Wipe): Causes, Meaning When Black, Green, Remedies

The food you eat can have a big influence on the texture and color of your stool. When your stool becomes hard to wipe, it means that it is sticky.

With it, you are also likely to suffer from constipation.

Other characteristics that may accompany it include a green or black color. If it has dark specks, it is more likely the food you ate.

But what exactly causes your poop to be sticky? Does it mean a serious health problem?

What does it mean?

The appearance as well as the nature of the fecal matter when you pass it out might be used to learn the overall health of the body.Sticky poop or sticky stool can be hard to wipe

Also, it might be used to know the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract or even determine the infections and diseases that are affecting the digestive system, like  colon cancer and some digestive complications.

Basically your poop is comprised of the dead cells from the digestive system, bile, and waste products from the system.

Due to several factors, the fecal matter normally comes out in  a different consistency, color, and shapes. As such, some characteristics of the stool can be used as signs of some infections and diseases.

There are two main types of sticky poop:

  • greasy floating stool and
  • black tarry stool

Both of these can mean a certain health condition of the digestive tract.

Sicky black, tarry poop is due to the internal bleeding or even the stomach ulcers.

Greasy stools however, may be brought about by:

  • pancreatitis
  • intolerance to some food
  • poor absorption

Indicated below are the common causes of sticky stool appearing like peanut butter. This stool is usually very hard to wipe and can even cause bruising of the anal area if you attempt to do it hard.


A tough bowel movement is hard to pass. Most people experience this when constipating. While it is easier to remedy and treat in adults, it can be a different case in babies.

To get rid of stool that is hard to wipe and pass, it is mportant to treat the main cause. In that sense, here are the possible reasons why your poop may be adhesive.

1. Lack of bilirubin

Bilirubin is normally secreted by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. It is passed to the intestines, together with bile where they are then acted upon by the bacteria.

  • This particular changes the chemical composition and the color of stool. It’s role is to help in the digestion of fat.
  • When bilirubin is not enough or not released at all, all the fat will be passed out as part of the feces. This is one of the main reasons why you are passing sticky dark brown stool.
  • You may also experience other symptoms such as anxiety and stomach pain.

Bilirubin is stored in the bladder until it is released into the intestines. When bile together with the bilirubin passes through the intestines, they are then exposed to bacteria that is available in the intestines. Such bacteria can change the chemical nature as well as the color of the stool.

Lack of bilirubin is occassioned by a condition called Gilbert’s syndrome (GS).

2. Fatty food

If more than the needed amount of fats is taken in, then the excess fats (especially bad cholesterol) will be passed out together with any fecal matter.

The advised amount of fat that should be taken per day is about 35% of the total calories that are taken in a day. Some of the foods that have good cholesterol include:

  • eggs
  • meat
  • dairy products

Taking other foods that are very high in fats, like the cheese fries, potato fries etc. will introduce a lot of fat than is needed by the body.

The excess fats can then be passed together with the stool, thus making it sticky. Consuming a lot of dietary fat can be a problem to storing it which might make feces to be sticky and very greasy.

The daily intake of fats and also the calories should thus be very specific. The recommended intake for an average adult should be around 35 percent of the total daily calories.

Foods that are high in fats like the oil and butter have bad cholesterol and also fat that is very much difficult to convert into energy.

However, the amount of calories obtained from fat in the foods like meat, eggs and also the dairy products leads to good cholesterol. Fries that have maximum amount of bad cholesterol are to be avoided, this include:

  • potato fries
  • cheese fries
  • chips

3. Acidity and ulcers

After taking proteins, they are then acted upon by enzymes and also the hydrochloric acid so as to form the amino acids.

If the level of the acid is very high even after the food has been fully digested, it can then corrode stomach walls, leading to ulcers.

When the ulcers bleed, then the blood is digested and ends up forming a dark and a very sticky poop.

Some of the healthy protein sources that can cause healthy poo are lean meat, milk products and also the egg whites.

Hydrochloric acid assists to break down the proteins and also converts them to be amino acids, once they are digested.

If the amount of the hydrochloric acid that is in the stomach gets high it can lead to ulcers in the stomach and maybe bleed.

This blood is then digested forming a dark, sticky stool. The suggested amount of protein that should be taken in the diet should be at most two fourth of the daily total calories.

A good protein diet should contain the following:

  • lean meat
  • egg whites
  • milk products

That should be in the right amount. Although if exceeded it can lead to a very mild to severe harm of the stomach.

4. Gluten intolerance

Some people are very intolerant or allergic to some foods like the gluten that is found in wheat and barley or even lactose. Their bodies are not capable of producing the appropriate enzymes that digest foods like gluten, rye, fructose, beans, MSG and lactose.

Gluten is a protein that is commonly found in barley, wheat or even to an extent in the rye. Also, a lot of packaged foods have gluten, so you must read labels cautiously.

Lactose is milk sugar which is found in milk and also in yogurt and cheese, in a lesser amount.

Gluten can also be found in several packaged foods. Lactose, however, is a milk sugar, found in milk and also the milk products, like the cheese and yogurt.

Intolerance to the lactose and gluten will alter the composition and texture of your stool. In most cases, these foods will be passed without being digested. Since they are mostly sticky, like dough or wheat products, your poop will be hard and sticky.

5. Bleeding in the digestive tract

If bleeding happens in the stomach or even the upper part of the intestines, then the blood will be acted upon by the digestive enzymes.

This can cause black and sticky feces with a very foul smell. This type of stool is known as the black, tarry stool or even the melena.

6. Constipation

Constipation normally happens when stools are in the colon (also known as the large intestine) for very long time.

The colon then absorbs a lot of water from stools, making them to become hard and dry.

Many cases of constipation aren’t brought about by a specific condition and it can be much difficult to identify the cause. But, many factors can increase the chances of constipation, including:

  • not taking enough amount of fibre, like the fruit, vegetables and also the cereals
  • a change in the routine or even lifestyle, like the change in eating habits
  • Experiencing limited privacy when using toilet
  • ignoring urge of passing stools
  • immobility or even lack of exercise
  • not taking enough amount of fluids
  • experiencing a high temperature
  • being underweight or even overweight
  • anxiety or depression
  • psychiatric problems, like the ones caused by sexual abuse, violence or even trauma

7. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

IBS indicates exactly what is happening: the bowel is usually irritated and letting you understand that it is. Medically the cause is not very well known, it is said to be very much related to stress and also to foods.

The bowel lets you know that it is irritated by a lot of pain, altered bowel patterns, which may vary from constipation to diarrhea, or even sometimes alternating between the two.

Normally, most people have neither constipation nor diarrhea but they mostly experience sticky stools that don’t want to be passed. The lower bowel never seem to empty as required and there are frequent small bowel movements.

A food intolerance can indicate most of the symptoms as it leads to the release of histamine within the gut, which leads to contraction of the involuntary muscle that is in the gut.

There are always two sets of muscles, which includes those that go around the gut and muscles that extend down the gut lengthways.

These muscles normally work alternatively, so that the circular ones are able to squeeze and the longitudinal ones then shorten, this can propel the food and the waste together with the gut. This is called peristalsis.

When the histamine which is found in the muscles of the gut contract and thus remain in that contracted state, making the food and also the waste not to move on.

Any gas which is produced then gets trapped above this contraction, leading to the distension. When smooth muscle is then stretched or even constricted beyond the normal capacity it then results to pain.

Once the histamine reaction acts, then the muscles relax and the food and waste can get on the way. All is then resolved till the time food is taken unless the offending foods are then identified and completely avoided.

Sticky poop that’s hard to wipe

If the poop is sticky and takes a lot of wipes to clean off, it can be because of a high-fat diet or gluten intolerance. Consider a reduction of the fat content of diet or even eliminating foods that have lactose from the diet.

Sticky stool can really be hard to wipe.
You may have a hard time wiping after bowel movement.

Fecal matter usually comes in a variety of shapes and consistencies, and some characteristics are proof of the specific conditions. Sticky stool usually comes in two types: black tarry stool and also the greasy stool that floats.

Tarry stools can be an evidence of internal bleeding, as happens with stomach ulcers, while the greasy poop can be a sign of malabsorption issue, like the pancreatitis or even food intolerance.

In either case, avoiding some foods might provide relief. Before starting a new diet therefore, talk to the health care professional.


In babies

Once the baby starts to eat the solid food, the remnants of the previous days dinner are normally plainly visible.

Baby stools are not like the adult stool, perfectly formed and also firm. Fairly loose and adhesive stools may happen for several reasons.


The first stool that is produced after birth is known as the meconium. Hair, amniotic fluid and other debris usually go into creation of meconium while the baby resides in the womb. This dark green, sticky stool might be very difficult to wipe off the baby’s bottom.

If the baby passed meconium before birth, as 15 percent of the babies do, according to pediatricians, then you might not see much of this in the diaper.

The average baby usually passes meconium for the first few days after birth, before starting to eat enough amount to produce stool from whatever he eats. Passing meconium is a very good indication that your baby’s digestive tract works as required.

Breastfeeding and baby foods

Breastfed babies have looser stool than the bottle-fed babies, who might have pastier, stickier stools that smell like adult poop.

Babies who usually drink iron-fortified formula might produce the dark green pasty stool. If the baby’s stools change very suddenly in its color or even consistency, then you should consider the food eaten the previous day before calling doctor.

If the baby produces black stool that’s firmer and if you recently changed the formula or even added iron, this might be the cause. Don’t hesitate to ask the baby’s doctor about it, although.

Digestive diseases

Blood that is in the stool is uncommon in babies, but could happen if the baby has problems with the upper gastrointestinal tract, so that the blood mixes with the stool so as to form a dark, tarry stool.

A severe gastrointestinal infection or even allergic reaction that leads to gastritis or even the ulcers may lead to gastrointestinal bleeding in a baby.

Normal newborns don’t usually develop the gastric ulcers, although the babies in the neonatal intensive care unit who are very ill might develop gastric erosion, if you think the baby has passed a very bloody stool, notify the doctor and save the stool for some testing.

In adults

The problem is highly prevalent in adults compared to children.  Visible mucus that looks like a gel on the poop or even on the toilet paper might be an indication of inflammation. The digestive tract is usually lined with the mucous membranes that will secrete mucus which then allows for an easy passage of poo.

Thus, you should not be able to see any mucus. If then you do, it may be a sign inflammation of the mucous membranes that are lining the bowel.

This could be an indication of infection, gluten sensitivity or even an inflammatory bowel disease like the ulcerative colitis.

Slippery elm powder is also a gentle demulcent fibre that assists to reduce inflammation that is in the bowel. If you still observe any kind of mucus, then see a doctor.

Skid mark poo

The poo that leaves skid marks on the toilet bowel and is very much sticky, smelly and also difficult to flush is an indication that there is fat in the poop. The skid mark poo might also be brown, a colour that may be de rigeur on road but is not a good indicator to look for poo.

There is a chance that the gall bladder or even the liver are very much in trouble. Drink some amount of lemon juice in hot water each given morning and do not take any alcohol.

Black poop

There are several medical reasons that stools might appear black or even tarry having a foul smell, but sometimes the dark stools are brought about by eating some foods or even taking of the iron supplements.

But, black poop can also be due to bleeding, and the darker color shows that the blood is coming from a point in the upper gastrointestinal tract.

A black stool brought about by food, supplements, or even the minerals is called the “false melena.” It is known as “false” due to the black color which is not actually because of bleeding.

Iron supplements, when taken alone or even as part of a multivitamin for the iron-deficiency anemia, might lead to the black stools or even green stools.

Yellow or green poop

Excess fat in the stool, because of a malabsorption disorder, for instance, the celiac disease. Sometimes the protein gluten, like in breads and also the cereals. See a doctor for an evaluation.

Poop is greasy, floats and stinks

Malabsorption can happen when the stools pass through the intestines quickly, like when you experience diarrhea. It can also happen when the body does not process and also absorb nutrients as required. If you experience severe malabsorption, then the sticky feces may have a very strong odor and also appear greasy.

A common cause of malabsorption is gastrointestinal tract infections. This infections can be brought about by viral or even the bacterial infections. These infections normally disappear without any treatment. Floating stools commonly happen in people who experience lactose intolerance when they drink or even eat dairy products.

Lactose intolerance is the inability of the body to digest lactose, which is a type of sugar that is found in dairy products. Ingesting dairy products when a person is lactose intolerant can lead to the gas in the stools and also the diarrhea. This can cause adhesive stool.


The doctor will have to ask questions about the period that you have had sticky stool, the diet, medical history, and several other symptoms.

In much rare cases, the doctor can order blood or even the stool tests so as to try to diagnose the specific cause of the sticky stool.

Treatment, if needed, depends much on the cause of the sticky stool. The doctor can prescribe antibiotics for the bacterial infections, or even the antidiarrheal medications for the diarrhea. They can also recommend dietary changes.

Treat gluten intolerance

Certain people who experience sticky stools may not properly process nutrients that are found in the foods.

Foods that have either gluten or even lactose can also contribute to the sticky stools in susceptible persons, like the people who experience food intolerances, which happens mostly with celiac disease and also the lactose intolerance.

Gluten is a grain protein that is available in wheat, barley and also rye. Most packaged foods contain gluten, so read labels very much carefully.

Home remedies

Try the following home management tips to help you get rid of the hard and sticky fecal matter.

Manage stress

Since stress is a factors that is known to trigger an IBS flare-up, learn to short-circuit the stress with meditation, or a simple breathing exercise. Sit comfortably, or even lie down. Turn attention to the air going in and out of the body.

When upsetting or even anxiety-producing thoughts intrude, then you should focus fully on breathing. Practice yoga daily. Then, whenever you feel becoming tense and anxious, then use it to calm the body.

Avoid fried foods

Minimize taking of fried foods, oils, dairy foods, and other fatty foods. They lead to colon to contract violently, which may cause diarrhea and also a lot of abdominal pain.

Stay clear from spicy foods. The capsaicin that is in hot peppers, for instance, makes the large intestine to go into spasms, which may lead to diarrhea.

Eat more fiber

Soluble fiber usually soaks up liquid in the intestines, assisting in prevention of diarrhea. Good sources are the beans, and some fruits, like the apples, strawberries as well as the grapefruit.

If you can’t get enough soluble fiber in the diet, then take a daily supplement of psyllium, which is the main ingredient in the dietary fiber supplements. Unlike the chemical laxatives, the supplement is safe to take long-term.

Reduce fat

Excessive dietary fats that are not stored as fat are done away with as stool, which may normally be sticky, or even greasy.

The recommended dietary fat intake for an average adult normally ranges between 35 percent of the total daily calories much depending on the overall health as well as the specific nutritional requirements.

Talk with the doctor about a specific caloric and fat intake requirements. To calculate exact percentage of the calories for fat, take a daily caloric intake that are recommended by the doctor and multiply it by the percentage of fat that is recommended.

Eat the right amount of protein

Protein is usually digested in the stomach, in the presence of hydrochloric acid where it is then broken down into amino acids. The elevated levels of the stomach acid vital to digest protein is able to damage the lining of the stomach, leading to an ulcer that can form and also bleed.

The digested blood leads to black, tarry stool. The recommended dietary allowance for protein is about 35 percent of the total calories. As with fat intake, you may calculate the daily calories by the amount of protein that the doctor recommends each day.





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