When stools are fatty, called steatorrhea, they are more likely to float. “Since fat (which is oily) and water don’t mix, the stool containing fat will float on the surface of the toilet water,” Trubow explains. This could mean the body isn’t properly absorbing certain nutrients, or lacks the enzymes necessary to break down certain foods. According to functional medicine doctor Anshul Gupta, M.D., this could be a side effect of pancreatic enzyme deficiency, gallbladder dysfunction, or leaky gut. It’s important to talk to a doctor if you’re concerned about fatty stools.
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