Many underlying causes can contribute to chronic diarrhea, such as the side effects from medications or problems with the small and large intestines. Sometimes you can minimize or eliminate chronic diarrhea just by making changes to your diet.

Evaluate The Problem

If you can identify when chronic diarrhea started, it is easier to pinpoint a solution. Diarrhea from antibiotics or immunosuppressant medications can be a common problem. You should be concerned about serious illness if the diarrhea also occurs with abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting, or blood in your stools. If you do not have any additional symptoms, you can try retail anti-diarrhea medication to minimize bathroom visits throughout the day. Unfortunately, this is not a long-term solution because you will eventually become immune to the effects of the medication.

Try An Elimination Diet

In some cases, your diet may be to blame for chronic diarrhea. Start by choosing one group of foods to eliminate and determine if you notice a difference in your bathroom habits. Some common culprits include foods high in fats and dairy. Problems with your ability to process facts can develop and may cause malabsorption of fats and frequent diarrhea. Since dairy can be found in numerous products, especially processed foods, you will need to thoroughly read labels if you plan to eliminate dairy for a while. Some people find artificial sweeteners contribute to diarrhea, especially if they use them frequently. The major culprit is artificial sweeteners made from sugar alcohols, such as maltitol.

Integrate Probiotics

Some cases of functional bowel issues or medication side effects can be eliminated by incorporating more probiotics. The goal of probiotics is to help balance the good and bad bacteria in your intestines. An overgrowth of bad bacteria can cause gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and malabsorption of nutrients. Ideally, you should find probiotic-rich foods, such as yogurt. Eating too many probiotic-rich foods can also cause diarrhea, so start slowly. Try eating a serving of yogurt every other day and build up to one per day.

If you would prefer to use probiotic supplements, you may need to experiment with different brands. Since each brand will have a different amount of colony-forming units (CFU) and there is no way to guarantee the bacteria is still alive, you will simply have to experiment with each brand and determine if you notice a difference.

When chronic diarrhea is not accompanied by other symptoms, it is still a disruptive condition. Making changes in your diet and promoting good intestinal health may stop or reduce problems. Contact a company like Gastroenterology Associates to learn more.