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What to do when you have diarrhea



  • 10-12 cups of fluid each day such as water; or
  • Caffeine free drinks such as juices without added sugar or lemon-lime soda; or
  • Try Pedialyte®, Infalyte®, or Ceralyte®.
  • Instead of drinking with meals, drink 30 minutes before or after meals.


  • 6-8 small meals each day
  • Eat food at or near room temperature
  • Ask your doctor about lactase enzyme capsules or drops. These can be taken before eating dairy products if dairy products cause you discomfort.
  • BRATT diet – bananas, rice, applesauce, toast, caffeine free tea
  • Other good foods:
    • Noodles
    • Hard-boiled eggs
    • Oatmeal
    • Cream of rice or wheat
    • Rice cakes
    • Mashed potatoes
    • Gelatin
    • Cooked carrots
    • Yogurt
    • Crackers and pretzels
    • Fruits and vegetables (without the skins)


  • Fatty, greasy foods
  • Bran, whole grain cereals and bread, popcorn, nuts, seeds
  • Spicy foods
  • Raw fruits and vegetables with skins
  • Extra sweet foods
  • Cigarette smoking and alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Milk products

Ask your doctor about Psyllium®, Metamucil®, or Fibercon®. These contain fiber that absorbs water and softens and adds bulk to stools.


This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.

St. Jude complies with health care-related federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

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