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Foods that Cause Diarrhea

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Causes of diarrhea: foods and drinks

It might seem obvious, but what you eat and the way you eat can affect your digestive health. Eating foods that your digestive system does not tolerate well may play a role in triggering diarrhea.

Foods & drinks

Everyone is different. What might trigger diarrhea for one person could be fine for another. With this in mind, here are some foods and drinks that may cause diarrhea:

  • Alcohol. Drinking alcohol can cause diarrhea in some people. This can happen with occasional or long-term use.
  • Fatty foods. These foods can worsen diarrhea, so it may be a good idea to avoid fatty foods such as meats with a high fat content.
  • Fiber-rich foods. Some foods high in fiber – like bran and fruits – can be hard to digest and cause diarrhea. Do not eliminate all fiber from your diet, but you might consider eating lower fiber foods such as rice, noodles, or white bread.
  • Excess fruits or vegetables. For some people, eating large amounts of certain fruits such as prunes, figs, dates and raisins can trigger diarrhea.
  • Dairy. Milk, cheese, cream and other dairy products are known to cause diarrhea for some, especially for those with lactose intolerance. If you are lactose intolerant, consider LACTAID® products or non-dairy alternatives.
  • Coffee and tea. Caffeine has been identified as a diarrhea trigger for many sufferers. Try to limit how much caffeine you drink.
  • Sweeteners. Certain sweeteners like sorbitol, xylitol, manitol and fructose – which you’ll find in some drinks and sweets – have been linked with causing diarrhea. Keep an eye out for these ingredients on the packaging.

How to spot your problem foods

If you have diarrhea, it might be caused by eating certain foods. You can try to identify your trigger foods by keeping a daily food diary – including when and how you eat it – so you’re able to connect this knowledge to your diarrhea symptoms.

Read our tips on how to manage your diet and eating habits

Why treat your diarrhea?

IMODIUM® products contain an active ingredient called Loperamide, which works to help relieve diarrhea and restore the digestive system to its normal balance. Your diarrhea symptoms may resolve more quickly with IMODIUM® products than they will by letting the diarrhea run its course. If symptoms persist for more than two days or get worse, consult your healthcare professional.

Tips for Managing Diarrhea