Intolerance Lab

Diarrhoea Symptom Series

Diarrhoea – Food Intolerance Symptom Series

Food intolerances can cause many varied symptoms, but one of the most common ones is bowel irregularities. This includes diarrhoea, which is not a fun situation for anyone. There are several different types of diarrhoea, which we are going to learn about today. We will also take a look at how this sticky issue can relate to, or indeed be caused by, food intolerances; and some strategies that you can use to manage it safely at home.

Types of diarrhoea

The definition of diarrhoea is loose or watery stools that have no shape or form, that occur at least three times daily. It can occur acutely, such as when we have gastroenteritis, or chronically over a long period of time.

Acute diarrhoea is most often caused by bad bacteria that gets into the intestines and can last from a couple of days up to 3 weeks.

It often occurs when travelling, from food poisoning, or from viral gastro that passes from person to person very contagiously. Taking new medications can also cause it, including antibiotics. Antibiotics kill off all bacteria, including the good guys that make up your digestive microbiome, and this can, unfortunately, induce diarrhoea for a short period.

Chronic diarrhoea is the type most often associated with undiagnosed food intolerances. It is classified as loose stools that occur for a period of time longer than three weeks and can be due to things like IBS, chron’s disease, other gut disorders and also food intolerances. Lactose and fructose are two specific intolerances that are known to cause chronic diarrhoea when left untreated. 

This type of diarrhoea can also come with other symptoms, such as urgency and gut pains. If at any time you notice blood in your stools, please visit your GP and have this checked out.

Symptoms and potential causes of diarrhoea

Diarrhoea usually occurs when the digestive tract is impaired in some way and can’t function optimally, or, there is a lack of specific enzymes that are required to digest certain foods.

Symptoms that can also occur alongside the diarrhoea include:

  • Stomach pains
  • Bloating
  • Wind or belching
  • Urgency of bowel motions, including explosiveness
  • Leaky gut
  • Mood issues
  • Exhaustion

Potential causes include the ones we have mentioned above, such as food poisoning or other bacteria, IBS, gut disorders, leaky gut and Food Intolerances!

Diarrhoea and food intolerance

Food intolerances can indeed be the cause of some cases of diarrhoea, and some specific intolerances are more likely to cause it than others. These include:

  • Wheat or Gluten intolerance
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Fructose intolerance
  • Yeast intolerance

There are two main reasons why food intolerances can cause diarrhoea. The first one is a lack of particular enzymes, such as in lactose intolerance. In this case, the digestive tract doesn’t produce enough lactase, and this can cause large amounts of fluid to accumulate in the intestines, resulting in loose stools.

The second reason is an immune response to IgG proteins in the food, which causes an inflammatory reaction in the body. In the case of diarrhoea, the digestive tract is affected and bowel motility issues occur.

Let’s take a look at some strategies you can use to help manage diarrhoea at home. If the predominant cause of your loose stools is food intolerances, then these strategies may only give mild relief.

Dietary strategies to manage diarrhoea

There are several very helpful strategies that are safe for you to try at home, and these include:

  1. Limiting sources of highly fermentable carbohydrates in your diet. These are foods that are most commonly referred to as high FODMAP foods. We have covered these in detail in our ‘Fructose FAQ’ article.
  2. Limiting your intake of foods and drinks that are known to stimulate your colon and bowels. These include coffee/caffeine, alcohol, chilli for some people and also high-fat meals. It’s different for everyone, but if you know that any of these foods set you off, make sure to avoid them.
  3. If your diarrhoea is severe or prolonged, make sure that you are drinking adequate fluids. You can use a hydrating solution, such as Gastrolyte or Dioralyte; coconut water is also an excellent natural alternative to this and will provide you with electrolytes too.
  4. Herbal thickening agents, such as psyllium husk, can be really beneficial. Taking psyllium husk in a glass of water can slow down diarrhoea and thicken up your stools, just make sure you are drinking plenty of extra water with it.

Lifestyle strategies to manage diarrhoea

Sometimes simple lifestyle tweaks can really help to lessen diarrhoea too. The number one lifestyle adjustment to try is to:

  • Avoid nicotine. This can really stimulate bowel movements, just like coffee. Stopping cigarettes and coffee for two weeks may give you the relief that you need.
  • If you have bowel incontinence, doing pelvic floor exercises every day can be highly beneficial in toning up all of the muscles needed to maintain tone in that area. Seeking help from a specialised physiotherapist can also be very helpful.
  • If you find that psyllium husks or other fibres such as oat bran do not help, you can discuss other options with your GP. Some medications can slow digestive movements, but you need to carefully consider all of the pros and cons of this approach before making a decision. Your GP can help you with this.

If you have tried all of these strategies and nothing has worked, it may be time for you to take a bio-resonance hair intolerance test! This test uses just a few strands of your hair and analyses it against 400+ food and non-food substances that may be causing your symptoms. If you test positive to anything, you will receive a list of these items to remove from your diet and lifestyle. Our team will guide you every step of the way as you remove these foods and replace old habits with new. You can find out more or order your test HERE today.

Summary

In summary, today we’ve covered the sticky topic that is diarrhoea, and the different types that can occur. We have looked at the symptoms that can also come along with diarrhoea, and how this digestive issue can relate directly to food intolerances.

There are several causes of any bowel irregularity, not just food intolerances. So you will also find a very helpful guide to both dietary and lifestyle strategies that you can use safely at home to combat loose stools.

We highly recommend that if you try these strategies and have no success, that you consider our bio-resonance food intolerance test. In many cases, it has given people the answers they were looking for, along with greatly improving their quality of life through removing the symptom they’ve been plagued with, often for years. Now it’s your turn! You can find out more HERE!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *