Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Voodoo You Doo Doo So Well

Recently eaten: calzone
Recent annoyance: the post office

For the squeamish, please do not read on. but for the rest of you, those of you with insatiable appetites for knowledge and factoids about poo. Here's a good one.

What makes fecal matter brown?

Feces are fascinating. Flush down your initial grade-school scatological silliness and you'll discover a world of energy efficiency and unparalleled waste management. If machines, industries and nations ran as well as your stomach, intestines and colon, we could say goodbye to a lot of landfills.

The complex digestion process ensures that almost no useful energy goes unused. The average bowel movement is three parts water to one part solid matter. Bacteria make up 30 percent of the solid stuff. The same goes for indigestible foods like cellulose and extra fiber. The remaining 40 percent contains various inorganic wastes, fats and used-up body substances like red blood cells, which are released from the liver in an orange-brown compound called bilirubin.

Bilirubin mixes with another liver product, yellowish bile, to give poo its distinctive hue.

Howdy Ho, mystery solved!

No comments: