Diarrhea Foods: To Eat Or Not To Eat

We all have had diarrhea at some point in our lives, and while having diarrhea on occasion is normal and nothing to worry about, it’s one of the most uncomfortable experiences we can go through. Especially when it happens at the worst of moments! Diarrhea is medically defined as having loose, watery stools that happen more frequently than normal and the causes can range from having the flu to eating something that did not agree with your body. In addition, diarrhea can also come from bacteria, viruses, certain medications, and can also be a symptom of certain diseases such as celiac, Crohn’s disease or colitis.

While diarrhea is mostly an inconvenient annoyance, it can be dangerous for older adults and infants. Diarrhea can dehydrate infants and the elderly, so it can quickly turn into a dangerous condition if left untreated. While having diarrhea for more than three days warrants a visit to your doctor, knowing what to eat when you have diarrhea is vital to your recovery. Certain foods can worsen symptoms, so knowing what foods to eat and what not to eat will help you feel better much quicker.

When you are suffering from diarrhea, you will want to eat foods that won’t irritate your stomach, so it’s best to avoid these foods until your system settles down and goes back to normal:

  • Stay away from caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated beverages.
  • Stay away from milk and most other lactose-containing foods such as ice cream, butter, and cheese. The exception to this is sugar-free yogurt.
  • Don’t eat gas-producing foods such as onions, peaches, pears, cabbage, apricots, beans, plums, broccoli, cauliflower, raisins, and prunes.
  • Do not eat fatty foods, so this means no greasy foods, fast food, as well as fatty cuts of meat.
  • Do not eat any food that might be tainted and follow the old expression, “when in doubt, throw it out.”
  • No sugar-free foods, as some sugar substitutes and artificial sweeteners can have a laxative effect. So it’s best to avoid sugar substitute packets, diet soda, and sugar-free gum/candy.

In order to feel better faster, stick to these foods when you are suffering from a bout of diarrhea:

  • Oatmeal
  • Applesauce
  • Rice
  • Bananas
  • Cooked carrots
  • Toast
  • Baked chicken without the skin
  • Squash
  • Drink lots of fluids
  • Plain pasta
  • Boiled peeled potatoes
  • Pretzels
  • Plain crackers
  • Probiotic food

Remember, if diet and other home remedies don’t work and your symptoms persist for more than three days, call your doctor.

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