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Diarrhea Home Remedy: What You Should Be Consuming

Diarrhea Home Remedy: What You Should Be Consuming

Diarrhea is a condition characterized by a loose, watery bowel movement, which occurs more frequently than normal. This is a common issue, often temporary, lasting just a few days. It is sometimes accompanied by abdominal pain or cramps, bloating, nausea, and in more serious cases, fever and blood or mucus in the stool. Most times, a diarrhea home remedy is enough to fight off or alleviate its symptoms.

What Causes Diarrhea?

Diarrhea is usually caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites and medicines (antibiotics are capable of destroying both bad and good bacteria―majority of which resides in the gut).

Other causes include lactose intolerance, fructose, artificial sweeteners, and sometimes surgery.

Two common types of diarrhea are preventable, namely rotavirus diarrhea and traveler’s diarrhea. Infants can be given vaccinations for rotavirus in two to three doses, depending on the vaccine. The second type can be avoided by taking care of what you eat or drink when traveling to developing countries: drinking purified or bottled water, ensuring that foods are well-cooked, and avoiding unwashed or unpeeled fruits and vegetables.

Diarrhea Home Remedy: What You Should Eat

Water and electrolytes

A surefire way to alleviate symptoms of diarrhea is upping your intake of water and electrolyte-balanced fluids.

Increasing fluid intake in different forms―broths, diluted or pulp-free fruit juices, sports drinks, and even sodas that do not contain caffeine―is a recommended diarrhea home remedy. A severe side effect of diarrhea is dehydration and this first-aid remedy of sorts helps prevent this. Dehydration is when the body lacks sufficient fluids to function normally. It is a serious side effect of diarrhea especially in children, the elderly, and those with compromised or weakened immune systems.

Fiber foods

If you are having diarrhea, you must also adjust or change what you are eating. The BRAT diet―a tried-and-tested diarrhea home remedy―is as follows:

  • Bananas
  • White rice
  • Applesauce
  • Toast white bread

Low-fiber foods can make your stool more solid. They also limit your bowel movements in order to ease diarrhea or symptoms of other abdominal conditions.

These foods include:

  • Potatoes
  • Rice
  • Noodles
  • Bananas
  • Applesauce
  • Bread
  • Skinless chicken and turkey
  • Lean ground beef
  • Fish

Other low-fiber diet foods consist of

  • Tender meat
  • Ham
  • Bacon
  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • Baked goods made from refined wheat or rye flour (saltines, graham crackers and biscuits, for example)
  • Hot and cold cereals contain no more than two grams of dietary fiber in a single serving.
  • Fruit juices and vegetables are also recommended for a low-fiber diet.

Probiotics

Another diarrhea home remedy that is proven to be effective is the use of probiotics. These are live microorganisms believed to have health benefits when ingested.

These microorganisms are found in yogurt, fermented foods, dietary supplements, and sometimes even in beauty products. These are known to help the human body maintain a properly functioning body of bacteria as well as strengthen the immune system.

The most common types of probiotics are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. However, some yeasts also work as probiotics, particularly Saccharomyces boulardii.

Research has shown that probiotics do prevent gastroenteritis and similar conditions and symptoms. S. boulardii in fact has been proven to be effective against antibiotic-related diarrhea, as well as Clostridium difficile bacteria.

C. difficile―commonly known as “C diff”―is a bacteria that causes an infection that manifests in fever, nausea, abdominal pain, and of course, watery diarrhea. It accounts for 20 percent of antibiotic-associated diarrhea cases.

Key Takeaways

Diarrhea is a common, albeit uncomfortable symptom of digestive or abdominal conditions. The good news is that it is only short-lived and can be relieved without using medication. Take note, however, that the cause of diarrhea should be ascertained, as some types of diarrhea may be caused by bacterial infections, thus necessitating antibiotics. Consult your doctor for medication.

Learn more about Diarrhea here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Diarrhea – Symptoms and causes
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diarrhea/symptoms-causes/syc-20352241
Accessed March 19, 2021

Diarrhea, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/4108-diarrhea Accessed March 19, 2021

Probiotics for prevention and treatment of diarrhea, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19114770/ Accessed March 19, 2021

Probiotics: What You Need To Know, https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/probiotics-what-you-need-to-know Accessed March 19, 2021

Low-fiber diet do’s and dont’s, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/low-fiber-diet/art-20048511 Accessed March 19, 2021

Diarrhea, https://medlineplus.gov/diarrhea.html Accessed March 19, 2021

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Written by Louise Nichole Logarta Updated May 23
Medically reviewed by Elfred Landas, M.D.