Diarrhea always seems to come at the most inconvenient times, and it can put you out of commission for days. A common gastrointestinal woe, diarrhea is characterized by overly watery stools and often-intense stomach cramps that require quick access to a bathroom--preferably a private one.
Here, we look at why you have diarrhea and how you can make it stop before it ruins your week.
Why Do People Get Diarrhea?
If you have loose or watery stools three or more times over the course of 24 hours, it's classified as diarrhea, which has a number of possible causes:
• A bacterial infection, either passed alone from another person or picked up from a contaminated surface.
• An imbalance of good and bad gut bacteria, which prevents the small intestine from properly digesting and absorbing nutrients.
• A food allergy, such as lactose or gluten intolerance.
• Consuming water contaminated with parasites or bacteria.
• Food poisoning due to eating something contaminated with a harmful microbe.
• Medical conditions like irritable bowel syndrome or Crohn's disease.
• Consuming too much unripe or over-ripe fruit, greasy food, dairy products, caffeine, or alcohol.
• Emotional stress.
• Some medications, particularly antacids and antibiotics.
Stop Diarrhea Fast
Once you have diarrhea, the question becomes, how do you stop it, pronto? Well, you probably won't be able to stop it in its tracks, but here are some things you can do to ease the stomach cramps, reduce the duration of each episode, and shorten the duration of the diarrhea.
Take a probiotic: If you don't already take a daily probiotic, starting a probiotic regimen can help fight an infection and recolonize your gut with healthy bacteria.
Eat chia seeds: A few tablespoons of chia seeds can help thicken the stools and reduce the frequency of diarrhea episodes.
Rest: Diarrhea can really wear you down and getting plenty of rest is one of the best things you can do to reduce cramps and allow your body to heal.
Stay hydrated: Diarrhea can cause dehydration, and dehydration can worsen symptoms, especially cramps. Drink plenty of fluids while you have diarrhea.
Take flaxseed oil: Flaxseed oil has been shown to shorten the overall duration of diarrhea.
Eat simple foods: Bland, simple foods like whole grains, bananas, and rice are easy on your digestive system and aren't likely to worsen cramps. They also provide fiber to help bulk up your stools. But don't go overboard--while you have diarrhea, eat lightly.
Diarrhea isn't generally dangerous, although it can be uncomfortable or even miserable. However, if you become hydrated, develop a fever, or have blood or mucus in your stool, schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Rebalance Your Gut
Many of the causes of diarrhea can be combatted by taking a daily probiotic. The bacteria in your gut influence digestion and affect numerous other body systems and functions.
When gut bacteria are imbalanced, you're more susceptible to harmful microbes, and the imbalance itself can cause diarrhea and other unfortunate symptoms.
A daily dose of Thrive Naturals' Advanced Probiotic Complex contains 16 unique strains of good bacteria and an industry leading 50 billion CFUs to create a lush, healthy gut microbiome and help prevent diarrhea and other health problems.
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