Mother-2-Mother Concerns: Green Stools

Reprinted from (2000-2006), with permission from the author, Paula Y.

The occasional green stool is not unusual in the breastfed baby. Consistently green stools, however, are not normal for the breastfed baby. Most doctors don’t seem to recognize this as a potential problem because they often define “normal stool” as that of the formula-fed infant. Baby’s stool can be a wide variety of colors and textures , and not all of these are cause for concern. It is helpful to know what is normal for the bf baby as well.

Consistently green stools in the breastfed baby can indicate:

  • an imbalance of foremilk/hindmilk, often resulting in frothy green stools.
  • a sensitivity to something in the mother’s diet, such as cow’s milk products.
  • a sign that baby has an illness. Babies with an intestinal virus or even a simple cold will sometimes have green, mucusy stools. Teething can also bring about green stools due to increased saliva (can also cause tummy upset)
  • a lot of green vegetables or something with green food coloring in mom’s diet.
  • If baby has started solids, that could also account for the change in color (this is normal with the change in diet).

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