Diet for diarrhea: What to eat and what not to eat???

Diet for diarrhea

Diet for diarrhea: What to eat and what not to eat

Diarrhea is characterized by the evacuation of abundant and liquid stools. The number of stools is often more than three per day. Diarrhea can be acute or chronic if it lasts more than 3 weeks. It is usually accompanied by abdominal pain, cramps, and general weakness. The special diarrhea diet aims to rehydrate the body and slow down the intestinal transit through an anti-diarrhea diet rich in soluble fibre, protein, and nutrients.

Diet for diarrhea
Diet for diarrhea: What to eat and what not to eat???

Key points of the special diarrhea diet:

  • Avoid irritating foods for the intestine
  • Promote foods rich in soluble fiber
  • Compensate for losses in water and micronutrients
  • Split the diet
  • Limit lipids and simple sugars

Benefits of the anti-diarrhea diet

The anti-diarrhea diet aims to:

  • Promote foods that slow down transit
  • Avoid irritating foods for the intestine
  • Compensate for losses in water and micronutrients
  • Find a digestive comfort quickly
  • Restore the intestinal flora

Know the causes of diarrhea to adopt an adapted anti-diarrheal diet

The first step when diarrhea occurs is to look for the cause, and if possible eliminate it. In the case where fructose is a problem, eliminating it is usually enough to stop the episode of diarrhea. The special diarrhea diet will aim to provide optimal hydration by compensating for fluid and electrolyte losses. And this, whatever the cause of diarrhea.

The different types of diarrhea

  • Osmotic: it is due to the ingestion of substances little or not absorbed by the digestive tract. These substances then retain the water that must be removed by the stool. It is often carbohydrates such as fructose, sorbitol or mannitol that cause osmotic diarrhea.
  • Secretory: This diarrhea is due to excessive secretion of water and electrolytes caused by bacteria. It can also be caused by malabsorption of bile salts, laxatives or chronic alcoholism.
  • Exudative: the release of protein and blood in the intestines that increases the water content and stool mass. This type of diarrhea is caused by infections and intestinal diseases such as Crohn’s disease, celiac disease or ulcerative colitis.
  • Motility disorders: In this case, the contact time between the stools and the absorption surface decreases. The stools are then more liquid. There are disorders of intestinal motility after certain intestinal resections, surgical derivations or after taking certain drugs.

If the episode of diarrhea is acute, accompanied by fever or if it lasts for more than 10 days, it is imperative to consult a doctor.

What to eat in case of diarrhea? Recommendations for an anti-diarrhea diet

The nutritional recommendations to be followed under the special diarrhea regime aim to reduce the loss of water and electrolytes to avoid any risk of dehydration. In addition, the tips that follow help to correct some nutrient deficiencies that may occur during an episode of prolonged diarrhea.

Good foods against diarrhea

We often wonder what to eat in case of diarrhea. The special diarrhea diet provides the right foods to prevent dehydration and meet the nutritional needs of the body despite greater losses. It is a diet rich in soluble fiber, water, protein, and nutrients.

Soluble fiber

Soluble fiber has the ability to form a gel in the digestive tract, thus allowing liquid stools to become more consistent.

The best sources of soluble fiber to incorporate in diarrhea are:

  • Beans, beans, dried peas, and chickpeas according to tolerance
  • Bread and oat bran
  • psyllium
  • Lawyer
  • Brussels sprouts, asparagus, turnip, broccoli
  • Coffee
  • Figs, apricots, nectarines, oranges
  • Chia or flax seeds
  • Yam
  • Pectin contained in apple, pear, peach, grapes, carrot, tomato and potato

The psyllium can be integrated by adding 1 teaspoon in a glass of water. One can increase one teaspoon a day if the tolerance is good.


Proteins help to prevent loss of muscle mass. It is recommended to have a source of protein at each meal. 

Foods rich in protein to fight against diarrhea are:

  • meat
  • Pisces
  • Poultry
  • Seafood
  • eggs
  • cheese
  • legumes
  • Soy
  • oleaginous


Probiotics can be helpful in reducing or preventing diarrhea when it is caused by bacteria. They recolonize the intestinal mucosa with good bacteria while eliminating pathogenic bacteria to restore the intestinal balance and strengthen the immune system. In addition, it is recommended to do a probiotic cure after an episode of diarrhea because of the latter damages the intestine and imbalances its flora.

Compensate for electrolyte losses

Sodium and potassium are the two most important nutrients to replace in an episode of diarrhea. In addition, eating more often but in small amounts allows for a better absorption surface of these nutrients.

The foods that are high in sodium and potassium that you can use as part of the anti-diarrhea diet are:

  • Soups and broths
  • Ham
  • Vegetable juice
  • cheese
  • Natural and smoked fish
  • preserves
  • Potato
  • Banana
  • Yogurt

Keep a good hydration

It is very important to compensate for the liquid losses caused by diarrhea. For this, it is recommended to drink often and in small quantities. It should ideally reach 1.5 to 2 liters per day.

Other recommended foods:

  • Omega 3
  • Bifidus yogurts
  • Cooking with water or steam
Diet for diarrhea
Diet for diarrhea: What to eat and what not to eat???

Diarrhea: What should you avoid eating?

In the case of diarrhea, it is not enough to know what to eat. The anti-diarrhea diet also aims to adopt a specific diet low in food that can aggravate diarrhea. Until the disappearance of symptoms, it will be necessary to avoid foods that can irritate the intestine, foods high in fat, lactose, and simple sugars.

Irritating food

Irritant foods should be avoided as part of the anti-diarrhea diet. Indeed, they stimulate the intestinal function and accelerate the transit. 

These are mostly foods rich in insoluble fiber, irritating substances or causing gases:

  • Sound and complete grain products
  • Vegetables and legumes
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Coffee, tea
  • Alcohol
  • Soft drinks
  • Chocolate
  • Strong spices
  • “Gasogenic” foods: cabbage, onion, leek, garlic, corn, peas, chewing gum, etc.


Lactose intolerance can occur during an episode of diarrhea, it is often transient and short-lived. If you find that foods rich in lactose (especially milk) cause discomfort, limit your consumption for a few days. However, it is important to meet the calcium needs by choosing dairy products low in lactose or substitutes: hard pasta cheeses, yogurt, soy milk, etc.


The fats are to be avoided in the special diet diarrhea as they increase the speed of intestinal transit. 

Here is a list of fatty foods to avoid as part of the special diarrhea diet:

  • Fatty meat and cold meats
  • Fried or breaded products
  • Pastries, pastries, and biscuits
  • Fatty cheese
  • Butter, margarine, cream
  • Vinaigrette sauce, mayonnaise
  • Oilseed puree

Simple sugars

Foods rich in simple sugars and sweeteners should be avoided to fight diarrhea. Sweeteners are used in many industrial products and have a laxative effect consumed at high doses. It will also avoid products low in sugars, 0% that contain artificial sweeteners. The best known artificial sweeteners are aspartame, sucralose, acesulfamate, saccharin, and cyclamate.

The products rich in simple sugars to avoid in case of diarrhea are:

  • White sugar, red, brown sugar
  • Glucose-fructose syrup, maple syrup, honey, jam, and jellies
  • Spread, caramel
  • Pastries, pastries, desserts
  • Cereals for breakfast and cereal bars
  • Cakes, cookies, and sweets
  • Commercial sauces: ketchup, barbecue, marinades
  • Fruit yogurts, ice cream
  • Flavored drinks made from milk or syrup, fruit juice
  • Sodas, alcohol
  • Low-sugar products: jams, sodas, yogurts, etc.

Unstructured food

It is recommended to make several small meals a day in case of diarrhea to increase the intestinal absorption of nutrients. Avoid skipping meals or only three rich meals, to be sure to avoid micronutrient leakage and facilitate digestion.

Other foods not recommended:

  • Alcohol
  • Industrial products
  • Ready meals
  • Dishes in sauce and cream

Diarrhea special diet: our daily practical tips

Here is a recipe to integrate into the special diarrhea diet to compensate for the loss of electrolytes:

  • 350 ml of pure orange juice, unsweetened
  • 600 ml of boiled water, cooled
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

It is important to put the exact amounts of each ingredient and drink this mixture in small amounts distributed throughout the day.

Here are some other recommendations to help monitor the anti-diarrhea diet:

  • Drink sips of water all day long
  • Make snacks several times a day, if needed
  • Favor vegetables in the form of soup or cooked: zucchini, carrot, leek
  • Consume refined grain products: white pasta, basmati rice, etc.
  • Avoid sodas, straw drinks, and meals that are too fast to avoid bloating
  • Eat fruits in the form of unsweetened homemade compotes
  • Systematically consume a source of protein at each meal

Please comment on the article “ Diet for Diarrhea ”. Thanks

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Share on digg
Share on reddit
Share on google
Share on pinterest
Share on vk
Share on odnoklassniki
Share on tumblr
Share on skype
Share on stumbleupon
Share on mix
Share on telegram
Share on pocket
Share on xing
Share on print


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.