What to eat for diarrhea: 9 best foods (and what to avoid)


During diarrhea, it is important to prioritize easily digestible foods, such as white bread, white rice and white pasta, lean meats, such as chicken and fish, and unpeeled fruits, which will help with digestion, control the volume of bowel movements and relieve pain in the back. stomach.

To avoid pain and episodes of diarrhea, it is recommended to avoid processed and very fatty foods, such as ready-made sauces, fried foods and sausages, as well as foods that can cause the production of gas, such as beans, chickpeas, broccoli and carbonated drinks. See foods that cause gas.

Likewise, it is also important to increase your intake of water, teas, oral rehydration salts and soups to replenish minerals and avoid dehydration.

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9 best foods for diarrhea

The 9 foods that can be consumed in case of diarrhea are:

1. Peelless apple

Peeled apples, raw or cooked, are a good option to include in your diet during diarrhea, as they contain little insoluble fiber, a type of fiber that speeds up bowel movements, making food pass more easily through the mouth. intestine.

It is important to always consume fruits without skin, without seeds and without pomace, as these are the places where the greatest amounts of insoluble fiber are found, which is not good for diarrhea.

2. Potato

Potatoes are a tuber with a low fiber content and are easy to digest, helping to avoid diarrhea attacks. It is important to eat potatoes without the skin and in low-fat preparations, such as mashed potatoes, roasts or stews.

3. Banana verde

Green bananas have a great amount of soluble fiber, a type of fiber that helps control involuntary bowel movements and balances the health of the intestinal flora, helping to control diarrhea. Green bananas can be consumed raw or cooked.

4. Pisces

Fish, especially those with white meat, such as sole, hake, cod or sea bass, have a low fat content and therefore help prevent diarrhea

In addition, fish and other lean proteins such as chicken, eggs, tofu, white cheese and lean cuts of beef are also essential for strengthening the immune system and preventing the loss of muscle mass.

5. Guava without peel

Peelless guava can be consumed during diarrhea, as it has low amounts of insoluble fiber, helping to control bowel movements.

Other fruits that can also be consumed without the peel are guava, cashew, passion fruit, peach and lemon.

6. White rice

As it has a low fiber content, white rice is a recommended food to include in the diet during diarrhea.

In addition to white rice, other cereals that also have little fiber and can be consumed are cornmeal, white bread, white pasta, toast and crackers.

7. Boiled carrots

Cooked, unpeeled carrots can be consumed during diarrhea, as they have a lower fiber content than the raw, unpeeled version. In addition, carrots also have pectin, a type of fiber that helps prolong digestion time, reducing bowel movements.

Other vegetables that can also be consumed are zucchini, chayote, potatoes, yams, carrots, pumpkin, eggplant and green beans.

8. Coconut water

Coconut water is recommended to help treat diarrhea, because it helps replenish potassium and sodium, which are essential nutrients for maintaining the body’s functions and which are eliminated in large quantities during diarrhea attacks.

9. Pear without peel

The peeled pear, which can be consumed raw or cooked, helps treat diarrhea because it has a high content of soluble fiber that reduces intestinal transit and regulates the volume of feces. Furthermore, pear is rich in water, helping to hydrate the body.

How to start the diet

The ideal is to start eating with a liquid diet, which includes homemade broths or soups, liquefied and strained apple, pear or peach juices, gelatin, chamomile, bay leaf or guava teas, or rice water, for example.

Read too: Teas for diarrhea: 10 best options (and how to prepare)

Once the liquid diet is tolerated, it is possible to progress with the diet, including easily digestible foods such as white rice, rice noodles, pasta, polenta, skinless or mashed potatoes, cooked carrots, chayote or zucchini, for example, preferably fresh and cooked and still hot to promote digestion. These carbohydrates can be served with eggs, skinless chicken or shredded fish.

It is also possible to consume white bread, rice or corn biscuits, cream crackers, green bananas, apples, pears, peaches and peeled guava, as well as low-fat white cheeses, such as ricotta or cream cheese, for example.

Then, and depending on tolerance, it is possible to progressively include the usual foods in the diet.

Foods that should be avoided

It’s important to avoid some foods that can make diarrhea worse, including:

  • Foods with a lot of fatsuch as fried foods, nuggets, pizzas and fast food;
  • Dairy, such as milk, yellow cheeses, butter and cream;
  • Laxative fruits, such as orange, papaya, avocado, kiwi, fig and ripe banana;
  • Oilseeds, such as walnuts, chestnuts, peanuts and hazelnuts;
  • Whole grains, such as brown rice, wholemeal pasta, wholemeal bread and oats;
  • leafy vegetables, such as lettuce, arugula, kale, spinach, chard, chard and watercress;
  • Foods that cause gas, such as beans, radishes, chickpeas, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, lentils, sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts;
  • fatty meats, such as bacon, lamb, pork, sirloin, fillet and flank steak;
  • Processed foods, such as ketchup, mayonnaise, ice cream and instant noodles;
  • Spices, such as pepper, curry, garlic and onion
  • Built-ins, such as sausage, ham, salami, copa and mortadella;
  • Foods rich in sugar, such as table sugar, jams, chocolates, cakes, pasteurized fruit juices, dried fruits and fruit in syrup;
  • Carbonated drinks, such as sparkling wines, soft drinks and soft drinks;
  • Caffeinated drinks, such as coffee, green tea, mate and black tea.

Additionally, sports drinks such as Gatorade should also be avoided as they contain sugars that can worsen diarrhea, as should alcoholic beverages.

3-day menu for diarrhea crisis

The following table provides an example of a menu to follow when you have diarrhea:

In addition, you should drink plenty of fluids, such as water and infusions, to stay hydrated, and you can also prepare homemade serum, which replaces some nutrients, preventing dehydration and helping to control diarrhea. See how to prepare homemade serum.

Home remedies to treat diarrhea

Some home remedies for diarrhea, such as chamomile tea, guava leaf tea or rice water, can be used along with the diet to alleviate diarrhea symptoms.

These home remedies help keep the body hydrated and fight diarrhea. Learn how to prepare home remedies for diarrhea.

Read too: 5 main types of diarrhea and what to do

When do you need to take medicine

The use of medicines to treat diarrhea should only be done with medical advice, because taking medicines to stop diarrhea in the case of an intestinal infection prevents the body from eliminating the microorganisms responsible for diarrhea.

When diarrhea is not caused by bacteria, fungi or viruses, the doctor may prescribe anti-diarrheal medications, such as loperamide and racecadotril, which will reduce intestinal contraction, reducing episodes of diarrhea.

In addition, the doctor may also recommend the use of probiotic supplements, such as Lactobacillus reuteri, Lactobacillus rhamnosus e Lactobacillus caseiwhich are live microorganisms that balance the intestinal flora, helping to combat diarrhea.

When to go to the doctor

It is important to see a gastroenterologist if one or more of the following factors arise:

  • When diarrhea lasts more than a week;
  • When showing signs of dehydration, such as dry mouth and skin, little urine, weakness and malaise;
  • Severe and persistent abdominal pain;
  • Dark stools, with blood or mucus;
  • High fever.

It is important to remember that diarrhea tends to be more serious in children and the elderly, and therefore greater care should be taken in these cases, seeking medical help if diarrhea lasts for more than 3 days even with changes in diet.