Your poop can serve as a daily indicator of your health. It's a gift your body gives you every day (or so) and gives a lot of insight into what is happening from the time you swallow food to the time it, well, evacuates. 

While poop isn't really the hot topic when it comes to brunch conversation, it's something you should be talking about with your doctor. I know it can be a little too real to talk about what's going down your bowl, but having a serious conversation about any of these unusual signs is important for your health. 

1. It's Black, Bright Red, or Another Weird Color

beet root, vegetable, candy, beet salad, sweet, beet
Jamie Medina

If you pass some red stool after consuming a good amount of beets, don't fret. Any of these colors could mean you just ate a lot of something that died your poo that color - think leafy greens and black licorice. Certain medications, like Pepto-Bismol, can also turn your stool (and tongue) black.

But if you can't explain weird color changes, it's good to know what they may be telling you. Black or bright red colors could indicate bleeding in the GI tract. Green colors tend to mean that food is going through you too fast and diarrhea may be on the way.

Gray or yellow hues indicate mucus has made its way into the stool. It's the liver and gallbladder's job to sort all that junk out, so there could be a problem with those organs.  

2. It's Not Shaped Like a Log

The "ideal" poop shape should resemble a snake. It shouldn't come out in small lumps, contain a ton of cracks, or be in fluffy little pieces. Little lumps could mean you're not getting enough fiber while fluffy pieces could mean your colon is hyperactive.

The Bristol Stool Form Scale can help identify the shape of your own poo. In general, if it's lumpy you're probably experiencing constipation and fluffy poos mean diarrhea. 

3. It Smells

beer, cake, tea, coffee
Steven Baboun

Yeah, I get it, all poop smells. But if your movements are particularly putrid, it could be an indication that something nasty is going down inside your body.

The foul smell may simply be due to some indigestion, which happens to everyone at some point. If the smell continues, that's when it's time to smell out what your poop's telling you. It could be a sign of lactose intolerance, blood in the gut, or other conditions

4. It Floats

dairy product, ice, sweet, coffee, milk, chocolate, cream
Naib Mian

If you hear a sound when you're passing bowels, consider it a good thing. Floating poop could be an indicator of malabsorption, a gastrointestinal infection, or another chronic condition. Don't be too worried, since floating stools are usually only an indicator of poor health when combined with other troubling factors

5. It's Taking Forever

I love my bathroom books as much as the next guy, but reading on the toilet can negatively affect the way we think about our bathroom habits. If it's taking you more than a few minutes to get some relief, it may be time to see a doctor. 

6. Your Schedule is Out of Whack

beer, coffee, tea
Josie Persson

Most people probably think that it's normal to go once a day. Truth is, your normal schedule might be very different than someone else's. Some people may need to go multiple times a day while others feel normal going only every other. 

The only time you need to be worried about your frequency is when it changes drastically. Going more than three times a day or having trouble going just a few times during the week could be an indication of a gastrointestinal condition. Or it could just mean you ate a ton of fiber yesterday. 

While all of these things are indicators of what's going down in your body, a color change that lasts a day or a slight change in your schedule shouldn't cause major concern. There are some easy changes you can make to get your bowels back to normal in no time.  

When you've got more than one of these things going on persistently, it's time to seek out a professional. Talking about your "movements" with your doc won't be the most comfortable conversation in the world, but being honest could lead to a successful diagnosis. Everyone goes, so use what your poo tells you to your advantage.