Cashew Nuts and Poop Colour

Since I wrote this half way through 2017, it has been viewed 40,000 times! For the last year, it has been the top post. Obviously, a lot of people like Cashew nuts!

Before I start, let me state clearly that I am not a doctor, and this is not a medical assessment of any kind. But I can state absolutely and categorically that eating too many Cashews CAN send your poop white – or at least very pale or clay-coloured. In fact, eating too much of almost anything – and especially nuts (any type) and pulses – is likely to affect your poop’s colour and consistency.

I found this out after I had a shock one day. I won’t go into graphic detail, but let’s just say after I’d been for a Number Two, I almost did another when I saw what colour my poop was!

The internet is a great thing, but it can be very misleading if you’re not careful. I mean, you get a pimple, you look it up… cancer. You get a toothache and you look that up… cancer again. A headache? Yep, cancer – or possibly a stroke, a heart attack, cirrhosis of the liver, or mange. And so it goes on. And social media is even worse for bad information. It’s people who are the problem.

You’ll get someone who had a headache, so they Google it. Some online doctor (or one of your 100,000 ‘followers’) says it means you have a brain tumour, even though it was the fact you were hit over the head with a baseball bat that afternoon which prompted you to look it up in the first place. If you’re even half as crazy as your followers, you’ll now believe the online stuff and be convinced you have a tumour. And you’ll spread it around like you’re an expert for other people to find and be worried about. The baseball bat obviously caused some damage – but not what you’re now thinking.

In my case, I had done something sufficiently different from normal – namely, I made some salted, roasted Cashews (which are easy to whip up, and way cheaper than buying them ready made) and ate some. By “some”, it was actually more like half a kilo of them over a fairly short period of time. I like Cashews, and since I hadn’t had any for a while I suddenly got a hankering for some. They were nice, and I didn’t give it much thought until my stomach started rumbling an hour or two later.

When I Googled “stool colour and cashew nuts” I was surprised at how many results came up – mostly dire warnings about cancer and scrofula. There were also a lot of cases of people questioning their poop colour after eating Cashews. So many, in fact, that there was absolutely no way that there couldn’t be a connection.

So rest assured that if there is otherwise nothing wrong with you – and there probably isn’t – the answer is most definitely yes: eating too many Cashew nuts can turn your poop very pale, or even white. And other nuts and pulses can do the same sort of thing. Mine cleared up after a few hours. And I recently made some more salted Cashews – not eating as many this time – and my poop went pale again next morning.

Incidentally, I have also discovered that eating a lot of black grapes can give your poop a green tinge.

However, pale poop can be a sign of an underlying medical condition that requires the involvement of your GP, so if it doesn’t clear up inside a day or so, make an appointment.

Can eating a lot of Cashews affect a child’s poop/stool colour?

Yes. And it wouldn’t need anywhere near as many nuts as it would for it to affect an adult.

Can eating a lot of Walnuts affect your poop/stool colour?

Yes. From what I have read, eating a lot of any nut, pulse, and some dark-coloured fruits and vegetables can make your poop change colour. Green, very pale, even reddish/orange have been mentioned in the various sources I checked.

You need to be careful with red (and black) just in case it is due to blood in your poop rather than merely a pigmentation effect. If you see blood, get checked out by your GP.

Do Blueberries affect your poop colour?

Yes, they can make your poop green, reddish, or dark depending on how many you eat (and whatever else you’ve eaten). Be careful if your poop is genuinely red or black/very dark as this can sometimes mean there is blood present, which is potentially a serious issue and nothing to do with what you ate. If it persists, see your GP.

I ate nuts and there are bits in my poop

It’s normal. Things like peanuts and sweetcorn – things high in fibre or with tough skins – might not get broken down completely and may make it all the way through, ready to scare the living daylights out of you when you see it.

Do Cashews give you diarrhoea?

Not directly – unless you are allergic to them. However, eating too much of any nut can lead to diarrhoea or very loose stools, and that includes Cashews. It’s because of the fats and fibre in them.

As with any problem, if it lasts for more than a day, see your GP. And if you get proper diarrhoea every time you eat a few nuts, you might want to get that checked out, too, because you could have an allergy – and nut allergies are potentially quite serious.

Do Cashews make you go to the toilet more?

Probably. They contain a lot of fibre, and eating that does loosen your stools, so going to the loo will be necessary. It’s why people who are constipated are advised to eat more fibre. There’s a difference between loose stools and diarrhoea, though. 

IMPORTANT: this article does not constitute medical advice, and should not be taken as such. If any problem lasts more than a day, go and see your GP. If you ate Cashews and your poop went pale, it should clear up in a day or so. If it doesn’t, see your GP. And never ignore blood in your stools.

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