Saturday, March 16, 2013

BRAT Diet - help for diarrhea

  1. 1
    Drink clear fluids - broth, water and juices - for the first twelve hours of your diarrhea.

  2. 2
    After 12 hours of liquids only, follow the BRAT diet - bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast.
    • Green bananas are best for diarrhea.

    • Plain toast is a good idea as this will further dilute and absorb up the tainted fluids that are stored up in your stomach.

  3. 3
    Limit insoluble fibers. Insoluble fibers are called "insoluble" because they do not dissolve in water. Insoluble fibers accelerate the movement of food through the GI tract. Soluble fibers, such as pectin (found in applesauce), slow the movement of food through the GI tract by forming a gel when combined with water. Soluble fibers have a property called viscosity, and fibers with a higher viscosity are more beneficial for diarrhea.

  4. 4
    Eliminate foods that might be contributing to your diarrhea, such as high-fructose foods, sugar-free foods sweetened with sugar alcohols, and dairy products. Dairy products may worsen diarrhea in people who are not lactose-intolerant because food usually travels through the intestines more quickly during diarrhea, which may reduce the absorption of lactose. The unabsorbed lactose may then draw water into the bowels.
  5. 5
    After recovery, try some yogurt. If the diarrhea is not caused by antibiotics, yogurt with live cultures is often helpful to restore the balance in your digestive tract. Often the cause of antibiotic-related diarrhea is an overgrowth of the clostridium bacteria, and "good" bacteria often help keep that in check.

Non-BRAT Diet Method

Note that some believe that the BRAT diet is not a good idea to follow, as you do not want anything with sugar, such as a banana. If you do not wish to try the BRAT diet follow these steps.
  1. 1
    Drink only water for the first 12 hours of your symptoms. This is because the bacteria in your stomach feed and develop on any type of foods, especially sugars. DO NOT DRINK ANY OTHER FLUID BESIDES WATER!

  2. 2
    After your symptoms have cleared up, begin to drink broth, make sure not to have any fat or other substances inside the broth. Again, you can have toast with it. Plain green tea is also a good choice.

  3. 3
    Follow the method above and only until you start feeling better, and the diarrhea becomes less frequent may you start to eat more foods. Limit yourself to healthy foods such as vegetables, bananas, bland chicken, etc. Avoid dairy products till your symptoms are clear.

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