Diarrhea Diet: What to Eat and Avoid


Diarrhea is a common digestive problem that can happen to anyone, but it is especially common in children. This condition usually lasts for a few days, but it can cause discomfort, dehydration, and other complications if not treated properly. Diarrhea can be caused by virus, bacteria, food intolerance, or other factors. In most cases, a change in diet can help relieve symptoms and prevent further complications. In this article, we will discuss the diarrhea diet, what to eat and avoid, and other important information.

Foods to Avoid

When you have diarrhea, certain foods and drinks can irritate your digestive system and worsen your symptoms. Avoid the following:

Foods to Avoid Reasons to Avoid
Spicy foods Can irritate the stomach lining and increase bowel movements
Fried and fatty foods Take longer to digest and can cause abdominal cramps and bloating
Dairy products Can worsen diarrhea due to lactose intolerance or other factors
Caffeine and alcohol Can dehydrate the body and irritate the digestive system
Sugar and artificial sweeteners Can promote bacterial growth and increase diarrhea
High-fiber foods Can cause gas, bloating, and diarrhea in some people

Foods to Eat

When you have diarrhea, it is important to stay hydrated and eat foods that are easy to digest and gentle on your stomach. Here are some examples:

  • Bananas
  • White rice
  • Applesauce
  • Toast (without butter or jam)
  • Boiled potatoes
  • Chicken broth
  • Clear liquids (such as water, tea, or sports drinks without caffeine or alcohol)


1. Is yogurt good for diarrhea?

It depends on the type of yogurt and your tolerance for dairy. Some yogurts contain probiotics that can help restore the balance of good bacteria in your gut and improve digestion. However, if you are lactose intolerant or sensitive to dairy, yogurt may worsen diarrhea.

2. Can I eat fruits and vegetables when I have diarrhea?

Some fruits and vegetables can be helpful in relieving diarrhea, but others can make it worse. Stick to bland and low-fiber options such as bananas, applesauce, or canned fruits without added sugar.

3. Should I avoid all dairy products?

If your diarrhea is caused by lactose intolerance, you should avoid dairy products or choose lactose-free alternatives. However, if you are not lactose intolerant, you can eat small amounts of low-fat dairy products such as yogurt or cheese.

4. Can I drink coffee or alcohol?

No. Both coffee and alcohol can irritate the stomach lining and dehydrate the body, which can worsen diarrhea. Stick to clear liquids such as water, tea, or sports drinks without caffeine or alcohol.

5. What about spicy foods?

Avoid spicy foods as they can irritate the stomach lining and increase bowel movements. Stick to bland and low-fat options such as white rice, boiled potatoes, or chicken broth.

6. Is it okay to take over-the-counter medications for diarrhea?

If your diarrhea is mild and lasts only a few days, you can try to manage it with diet and hydration. However, if your symptoms are severe or persistent, you should talk to your doctor before taking any medications. Some over-the-counter drugs can worsen diarrhea or interact with other medications.

7. When should I see a doctor?

You should see a doctor if your diarrhea lasts more than a few days, is severe or bloody, or is accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, abdominal pain, or dehydration. Also, seek medical attention if you are pregnant, elderly, or have a weakened immune system.


A diarrhea diet can help relieve symptoms and prevent complications, but it is not a substitute for medical treatment. If you have diarrhea, make sure to stay hydrated and choose foods that are easy to digest and gentle on your stomach. Avoid spicy, fatty, and high-fiber foods, as well as caffeine and alcohol. If your symptoms are severe or persistent, or if you have other concerns, talk to your doctor. Remember, taking care of your digestive health is important for your overall wellbeing.

Closing Disclaimer

This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this article.

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