Written by Slawomir (“Swavak”) Gromadzki, MPH
Diarrhoea (diarrhea) is a common gastrointestinal condition that can be defined as frequent and excessive bowel movements in the form of watery stools accompanied by stomach pain.
It is usually caused by overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria, virus, ingested poison, food poisoning, allergic reaction to foods, intestinal parasites, colitis, vitamin A deficiency, antibiotics, eating unripe fruits, contaminated water, etc. Traveller’s diarrhoea is common among tourists who travel to underdeveloped areas and drink unclean water or consume contaminated food.
– First of all, it is extremaly important to drink plenty of water as diarrhoea leads to severe dehydration which may even become life-threatening, especially in case of babies and children. Drink 3 times a day about 3 glasses of water (distilled or at least filtered) about 30 to 60 minutes before each meal or about 2 hours after. During hot days you need even more. Your urine should be transparent, if it is yellow it means you don’t drink enough water. Distilled water is by far the best and only perfectly clean water. Read more about water >
– One of the best natural remedies to treat diarrhoea is activated charcoal. I always make sure to have activated charcoal (tablets or capsules) at home, at work and especially when I travel, as it is an amazing, quick and harmless natural remedy for various gastro-intestinal problems including heartburn, bloating, gas, bad smell, or diarrhoea. In case of of a diarrhoea caused by food or water poisoning I personally would start from at least 5 tablets or capsules or 1 teaspoon of powder (in a glass of water) and if it doesn’t work I would ingest even 10-20 caps (tablets) or a heaped tablespoon of powder with water every few hours or until symptoms stop.
In her excellent book on Charcoal Dr. Agatha Thrash tells about certain traveller who couldn’t completely recover from diarrhoea until he started taking activated charcoal:. “A prominent Columbus, Georgia, executive was travelling to Mexico when he developed a bad traveller’s diarrhea. It is generally caused from E. coli bacterium in unsanitary food and water. He was having diarrhea two to three times an hour on the first day of his disease, with much discomfort in the abdomen. A doctor treated him with the usual antibiotics and Lomotil. A week later, when he returned home, he consulted his own doctor because the condition had settled down to three to five diarrhea stools a day, with continuing discomfort. He got a change of medication but no change of symptoms. After twelve days of the disease and eight different medicines, he called us, desperately seeking suggestions for a natural remedy. We began a routine of one tablespoon of charcoal [powder] in a glass of water, followed by a full glass of water every time he had a loose stool. Within two days he was entirely well… and sold on charcoal. Now he never travels without charcoal, and always takes a tablespoon with the first hint of a symptom.” (source >)
Dr Agatha Thrash – a licensed pathologist and medical director who has promoted the benefits of activated charcoal for over forty years wrote: “Charcoal has amazing healing properties. In fact, if I were stranded on a desert island and could take only one thing along to protect me from disease, infection, and injury, I would choose charcoal.”
Read more about CHARCOAL >
– In order to stop diarrhoea you can try ingesting one of the common astringent or bitter taste herbs as they contain tannins that have antibacterial properties and tighten and contract cells and tissue found in the intestinal wall. This action results in fluid retention that can be very effective in stopping diarrhoea and it is also often used by herbalists to reduce bleeding, including excessive menstrual bleeding. Tannins help to cope with diarrhoea also because they decrease sensitivity of nerve endings in the colon, thus slowing the peristalsis (gut movement). Applied externally on the skin tannins can be very beneficial in treating burns, as they precipitate not only bacteria but also protein of the exposed tissue to help form a scab.
Examples of herbs that are all astringent, high in tannins and excellent for treating diarrhoea: White willow bark, raspberry leaf, agrimony, bayberry, comfrey, peppermint, slippery elm, white oak, black walnut, blackberry leaf, mullein, green and black tea (use green and black tea only when you don’t have other herbs available and use them for a short time to treat diarrhoea as they are high in caffeine and theobromine that are addictive and harmful over time). Dried berries (blackberry, blueberry, and strawberry) are also astringent and can help. Add 3 tablespoons of any of the above mentioned herbs to one 1 litre of boiling water in a large thermos flask or any container, cover and leave for about 30 minutes. Drink 3 times a day to reduce or stop diarrhoea.
A long time ago someone told me that in case of a severe and resistant to any treatment diarrhoea a raw fresh egg-white mixed with one of the above mentioned strong hot herbal teas always works like a miracle and stops any diarrhoea immediately.
– Astragalus is a well-known and popular today herb due to its excellent immune system boosting benefits, but Astragalus root has been also found to be effective in killing diarrhoeal pathogens due to its potent antiviral and antibacterial properties.
– In case of bacterial origin of diarrhoea it is crucial to kill pathogens and one of the most effective mediums to achieve this goal is, of course, raw garlic. Mix it with raw coconut oil, flax oil or olive oil and try to eat as much as you can with every meal. In case you don’t like raw garlic or if its smell is a problem take garlic capsules but it must be standardised for the presence of allicin as otherwise it will not work. Garlic Max capsules is an excellent formula with standardised for allicin garlic. Take 3 times 5-10 capsules until diarrhoea is under control. After that reduce to 3 times 2-3 capsules until complete recovery.
– Good quality live probiotics such as TravelProbio, ColiProbio or UltraProbio are excellent addition to cope with diarrhoea, including the traveller’s one.
– According to Saralaya et al., (2010), Moringa oleifera can be beneficial in treating diarrhoea.
– Carob is very rich in tannins, which makes it effective in treating diarrhoea. Good thing about carob powder is that it is tasty and safe food and therefore can be used not only by adults but also by children.
– Psyllium (Plantago ovata) is used not only to treat constipation but also for diarrhoea because its high in fibre husks seeds absorbing water, thus reducing diarrhoea.
– Golden seal tincture or Bee Propolis can be helpful due to their antibacterial properties: Three times a day between meals with water.
– Diarrhoea is a way for the body to rapidly remove toxins but can cause not only severe dehydration but also a loss of nutrients. It is, therefore, important to gradually replace lost nutrients like potassium and sodium by consuming super foods that are very high in nutrients such as chlorella, alfalfa, spirulina, moringa leaf, barley grass, sprouts, raw fresh vegetable juices, etc.
– Flaxseed oil has been shown to reduce the duration of diarrhoea.
– Drink aloe vera juice to heal the colon.
– Take about 5 grams of glutamine powder two times a day as glutamine is an amino acid known to help regenerate and heal the digestive tract, especially important for people with chronic diarrhea.
– Foods that are good when dealing with diarrhoea include well cooked oatmeal, brown rice, and steamed vegetables.
– Avoid any foods that contain dairy, milk, sugar and gluten.
© 2016 Slawomir Gromadzki – All Rights Reserved
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