GP Q/A: Why does my baby have green poo?

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Reader’s question:

Hello Dr. Joe,

My son is 6 weeks old and I’m breastfeeding him. I don’t always have masses of milk and I’ve noticed his poo is greener recently. Other mums and some websites say that means he’s undernourished. Is that true? What colour should their poo be? When should I worry about it?


GP response:

Dr Joe Kosterich MBBS, General Practitioner and Editorial Advisory Board Member of the Virtual Medical Centre and Parenthub responds:

Hi Emily,

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Dr Joe

Faecal colour can vary from mustard yellow to shades of green to different browns, so this is not a concern, and it is not an indicator of being undernourished.

All babies are different. Sometimes what you eat can influence the colour of your child’s faeces. The best indicator of whether your baby is getting enough nourishment is that he is gaining weight. If he is, then you do not need to supplement with formula. You can have your child weighed at your local child health centre, and many pharmacies have a child health nurse who will weigh your baby.

Drinking enough water and eating a sensible diet are two important factors when it comes to milk supply, so you may want to talk with your GP or child health nurse about your diet. Taking care of a newborn is all-consuming, and in the process you may forget to take care of your own diet needs. Keeping a food journal may help you remember to eat and drink enough during your busy days.

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Date Created: April 19, 2013 Date Modified: May 19, 2017