Honey For Diarrhea

Honey For DiarrheaHaving diarrhea is horrible. Depending on what caused it, you may have cramps and gas that accompanies loose or watery stools (very soft or runny poop) and sometimes the urge to use the bathroom is unbearable. If you have severe diarrhea you can end up weak and dehydrated.

Luckily, diarrhea usually lasts no longer than 3 days. If you have a condition like IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) or celiac disease you might have diarrhea more regularly. Learning to stay away from your trigger foods can really help with this. As for the rest of us, on average we will have one bout of diarrhea per year, and kids usually have diarrhea around twice a year (1).

It can be caused by bacteria, viruses, food intolerance or sensitivities, certain medications, some people can even get it when they have indigestion. There are medications that you can buy to help with your diarrhea but in most cases, you are better off using helpful home remedies instead.

Can You Eat Honey When You Have Diarrhea?

Yes, you can. Honey is high in sugar so you shouldn’t have more than the amounts recommended here, especially since it contains a sugar called fructose which can cause diarrhea when eaten in excess. But honey is actually a very useful remedy for diarrhea.

How Does Honey Help Diarrhea?

  • Honey has antiviral and antibacterial properties which is especially helpful for diarrhea caused by infections.

  • Honey can help with hydration as it attracts water and sodium in the gut. You may worry about the sodium part, but our bodies do need it to perform normally. Diarrhea leads to the loss of water and electrolytes like sodium.

  • Honey has anti-inflammatory properties and promotes healing. If your diarrhea is due to IBS or ulcerative colitis, you may find the anti-inflammatory effects of honey particularly helpful.

For most people over the age of 1 year, honey can soothe your stomach and shorten the duration of your diarrhea.

Honey Recipes for Diarrhea

It’s important to note that only raw honey has these health properties, and in particular, manuka honey. All types of raw honey have health benefits but they are not measured. Manuka honey has what’s called a UMF rating, this guarantees that the manuka honey has medicinal properties. Preferably you want the manuka honey rated UMF 16 and up as these are superior quality.

Here are some great ways to use honey for diarrhea:

1. Honey

Honey is delicious and many people will enjoy the sweet taste as is. Simply eat a teaspoon to a tablespoon of honey. If possible, try to wait a half an hour before drinking anything so that the honey won’t get diluted.

2. Honey, Baking Soda, and Lemon Juice

Many people find that these three ingredients are very effective at stopping diarrhea. Baking soda can also help with indigestion and heartburn if you are experiencing it. Here’s how to do it:

  • Add 1/4 to 1/3 of a teaspoon of baking soda to a glass

  • Squeeze a half to 2 full lemon’s juice into the glass as well

  • Quickly add a tablespoon of honey and mix it all together

  • Consume it as it foams

3. Honey and Water

Add 2 to 4 tablespoons of honey to a glass of warm water. This can be too sweet for some, so you can sip it throughout the day if need be, but it’s best to drink it within an hour. In order to get the full effect of the honey, it does need to be quite concentrated.

4. Honey and Tea

Tea is also great at settling the stomach and helping for diarrhea. If your diarrhea is because of nerves or stress, tea can help to calm you as well. Just add a teaspoon to a tablespoon of honey to warm tea (not hot tea as it will destroy the helpful enzymes) and drink it without milk.

Here are some of the best teas to drink for diarrhea:

  • Black (Ceylon) tea

  • Green tea

  • Rooibos tea

  • Chamomile tea

  • Peppermint tea

5. Honey on Toast

White toast is recommended during diarrhea because it’s easy to digest. You’ll need to stay away from the butter as this can make diarrhea worse. Spread a nice thick layer of honey on your toast and eat it to keep your strength up and have you feeling better in no time.

Note: Just don’t overdo it. Large meals during diarrhea can make things worse. You don’t want to irritate your digestive system further by making it have to digest large amounts of food when it’s already not functioning at it’s best. Stick to one or two slices at a time.

6. Honey and Raw Yogurt or Kefir

If you have access to high quality, reputable brands and stockists of raw dairy, eating either raw dairy or kefir can be helpful due to their probiotic content. Probiotics feed the good bacteria so that they can balance your gut biome and stop diarrhea. As the balance is restored good bacteria can prevent diarrhea and other digestive problems in future.

  • Add a tablespoon of honey to the yogurt or kefir

  • You can even add some sliced banana, applesauce, and/or grated ginger

Note: If you don’t have access to reputable brands, rather avoid this remedy. If the farm it comes from isn’t completely clean or poor transport and storage practices take place, you can get sick from raw dairy.

Tips and Precautions

  • Never give honey to children younger than a year old and avoid honey if you are allergic to pollen or propolis. There are other effective diarrhea remedies that you can try instead.

  • See your doctor if you have a fever above 102°F and/or if you have severe diarrhea for more than 2 days. This could indicate an infection which requires medical treatment. Remember that a slight fever is the body’s way of healing itself, but if it keeps rising or rises quickly, it’s best to get medical help (2).

  • If you suspect that a food is triggering your diarrhea, try an elimination diet. Remove that food from your diet for at least a week, see whether the symptoms go away. If your symptoms do go away, add the food back into your diet and see if they come back. If they do, that food is the culprit. If nothing happens, it could be a different food.

  • If you regularly have diarrhea and have tried the elimination diet (keeping a food diary can also help you recognize trigger foods), and have minimized stress, it’s best to see the doctor to rule out any conditions. Receiving the right treatment or knowing for sure which foods to avoid can be very helpful.

  • Some surprising herbs and food could be the cause, for example, senna is a herb known to induce bowel movements, sugar alcohols like xylitol, sorbitol, and mannitol can cause an upset stomach in large quantities. Some people also react badly to alcohol or spicy foods.

  • Keep your hands clean as this can spread the germs around if this is what has caused your problem. If your child has diarrhea, do the same for them, and if you have been changing nappies, disinfect the surface.

  • Be sure to get some rest as your body will need to divert most of its attention to healing.

  • Stay well hydrated and include a bit of salt in your meals as you will be losing sodium. Eating your vegetables will help with some of the other electrolytes like calcium, magnesium, and potassium that you may be losing. Leafy greens are the vegetables that usually contain these nutrients.

  • Avoid spicy food, alcohol, dairy, sugary foods, fatty foods, and exercising while you have diarrhea.

Have you used honey for diarrhea before? Please let us know if it worked for you and if you found any of these recipes helpful.

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