10 Questions about Tan Colored Stools Answered

Here are just a few of the questions answered about light colored stool and tan colored stools...

1.     Are tan colored stools normal?

No, tan colored stools are not normal. Tan colored stools can be a sign of an abnormality or dysfunction in your biliary system or digestive system, which is comprised of the liver, gallbladder, and biliary ducts.

2.   Should I be concerned because I am experiencing light colored stool or tan colored stool? 

Yes, you should be concerned if you are experiencing light colored stools. They can be a sign of dietary excesses, stomach acid deficiency, insufficient enzyme production, biliary dysfunction, liver congestion and gallbladder disease.n. 

3.   Could the tan colored stool be caused by something I ate?

Sometimes tan colored stools can be a sign of something you ate. If you ate something that your body is unable to digest properly, such as something fatty, it can result in tan colored stools or a pale stool.


4.     Do I need to go to the hospital?

There are a few self-help methods that you can try to stop the tan colored stools. These self-help methods include: dietary changes, relieving constipation, chewing your food well, warm water compresses, castor oil packs, hydration, helpful supplements, and exercises. If these do not work, you should seek the help of a professional. 


5.   Does tan colored stool mean my body isn’t producing enough bile?

In some cases, yes, tan colored stools may be caused by the liver not producing enough bile. However, there are many causes of tan colored stools so a lack of bile may not be an issue for everyone experiencing tan colored stools.


6.    Are my tan colored stools the result of my body not digesting the food that I eat?

Maybe. In some cases, tan colored stools are caused by the body not digesting fats well. To see if too much fat  is  the cause of  your tan colored stool, you could try cutting out fatty foods from your diet and see if your stool color improves. 


7. Is there something wrong with my liver or gallbladder when you have a light colored stool?

Yes in some cases, your liver and gallbladder may not be working properly and not making or releasing enough bile. You may even have gallstones or an obstruction in the biliary ducts.


8.  Is my stool tan because there is mucus in it?

Most likely not. If you are experiencing mucus in your stool, it will typically not make your stool appear to be entirely tan. However, if you are experiencing mucus in your stool, it can be a sign that there is inflammation somewhere in your intestine.


9. I often experience pain in my upper right abdomen, along with light colored stool. Are the two be related?

Yes, pain in the upper right abdomen and light colored stools can definitely be related. The biliary system (liver, gallbladder, and biliary ducts) is located behind the lower right rib cage. Stress on the biliary system may manifest as episodic tenderness in the upper right abdomen.


10. Could a medication I am taking be causing my pale stool?

Yes, this is a distinct possibility. The majority of medicines work by blocking a natural physiological pathway in the body, which creates unfortunate side effects. Medicines that could be causing tan colored stools are: Hormone Replacement, Birth Control Pills, Statin Drugs, Non-Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs, Diuretics, Anti-diarrheals, Antacids, Acid Blocking Drugs and Antibiotics.  

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