Recovery from diarrhoea is possible by following a few simple steps.
If you suffer occasional – or recurring – diarrhoea, it is important to address the causes and make changes to minimise the frequency of suffering. Paying attention to what you eat and drink is of paramount importance. If you’re prone to diarrhoea, follow my diet and lifestyle plan to minimse the chances of an attack.
If you are getting regular attacks of diarrhoea, (x 10 = episodes daily) with no apparent cause, then go and see your GP. There is a medical condition called Bile Acid Diarrhoea (BAD) that can only be controlled by medications.
Foods to avoid if you suffer diarrhoea
- Avoid alcohol as this makes you lose fluid instead of replacing it.
- Avoid fruit juices as these can irritate the gut.
- Avoid fizzy drinks as these can also cause discomfort.
- Avoid caffeine as this is irritating, and dehydrating.
- Don’t eat beans, pulses, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower or Brussel sprouts.
- Don’t eat too much fibre as it may irritate the gut.
- Avoid pickled and spicy foods.
- Avoid greasy, fatty and fried foods.
- Avoid dairy foods – milk, cheese, butter cream and yogurts, as these feed any bacteria that has taken hold in your gut.
Healing foods to try
- Sip (don’t gulp!) plenty of plain room temperature water throughout the day.
- Chamomile is known as the ‘mother of the gut’, so drink chamomile tea to help soothe and calm your tummy.
- Drink black tea with a little natural stevia to sweeten it. Black tea is an astringent so helps reduce intestinal inflammation.
- Fennel and peppermint are smooth muscle relaxants so help with any griping pains. Marshmallow root made into a tea can help calm and soothe the intestines, or agrimony herb made into a tea helps tone the intestines.
- Once you feel like eating, a light chicken broth is gentle on the stomach.
- So-called “white foods” such as bananas on white toast contain soluble fibre to soak up excess fluid in the intestines and help slow down bowel movements.
- Root vegetable soups are also gentle on the stomach – stew carrots, sweet potatoes, turnip, mild onions and celery and flavour with sea salt and ground black pepper. Add buckwheat or quinoa for bulk.
- Try some rice pudding made with almond milk and sweetened with natural stevia.
- Intervention with oral rehydration solutions may be necessary to prevent dehydration. These solutions are available from your pharmacist and contain salts, glucose and other important minerals that are lost through dehydration. If the diarrhoea has been caused by an infection don’t stop it. Just take re-hydration salts and let it pass, or you run the risk of prolonging the infection.
Supplements to support your recovery
- A gut infection is the number one cause of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), so it is important to take action immediately following an episode of food poisoning to ensure you aren’t left with longer-term consequences. If you’re not already taking a high-strength, multi-strain live bacteria (sometimes called a probiotic), begin immediately following a bout of diarrhoea. It is extremely important to recolonise the gut with “friendly” bacteria to avoid ongoing stomach problems following either a bacterial infection or a virus. Take one of my Live Bacteria capsules before every meal for a week or so, then switch to once-a-day maintenance.
- Charcoal has a long history of use as a traditional remedy – it has excellent absorption qualities, so is very useful in food poisoning events. Activated charcoal can absorb the pathogenic bacteria responsible for the food poisoning and carry it out of the intestines. Take two of my Charcoal capsules at three hour intervals, then take two before and after every meal once you start eating again.
- You can use both Charcoal and Live Bacteria preventatively if you’re travelling to parts of the world where you’re likely to succumb to food poisoning.
- To soothe an upset and irritated gut, try some ‘Tummy Tea’. A blend of ginger root, liquorice root, fennel seeds, cardomon seeds, fenugreek seeds, carom seeds and black peppercorns, the tea will help calm and relax the stomach and intestines – and is refreshing and delicious when you can’t face anything else.
Lifestyle tips to prevent diarrhoea
Diarrhoea is often caused by an infection or food poisoning. Reduce your risk by ensuring you maintain high standards of personal and kitchen hygiene.
- Wash hands thoroughly with antibacterial soap, or a soap that contains tea tree oil, and hot water after visiting the toilet and before preparing and eating food.
- During a bout of diarrhoea, clean the handles on the toilet door, the toilet flush lever, the seat and the sink taps. Use hot water and an antibacterial spray or wipes.
- Avoid sharing towels, cutlery and crockery with other members of the household. Avoid preparing meals and cooking for the rest of the household to reduce risk of cross-infection.
- When cooking meat and chicken, ensure it is thoroughly cooked. Use a cook’s thermometer if necessary.
- Always wash your salad – even bagged “pre-washed” salad.
- Keep cooked meats separate from raw meats in the fridge.
- Practise good hygiene when travelling abroad, particularly when travelling to South America, Africa, India and the Far East. Avoid what may be potentially unsafe tap water and undercooked food. Consider taking Live Bacteria capsules, Charcoal capsules and Citricidal when travelling long-haul, particularly if you are prone to tummy upsets.