If you have diarrhea as a result of a virus, food poisoning, food allergy or Another condition related to health, proper treatment is essential to avoid complications such as dehydration. While sugar is an essential carbohydrate that feeds every cell in your body, it is not always a friend when you have diarrhea.
Sugar, dehydration and diarrhea
It is a common mistake to think that water alone is a remedy for dehydration. Actually, when you have diarrhea, sugar plays an important role in rehydration. The World Health Organization explains that an effective oral rehydration solution contains not only water, but also salt and sugar, which helps replace the necessary nutrients lost through diarrhea. An oral rehydration solution that contains water, salt and sugar is effective in 80% of cases of dehydration that involve diarrhea.
The thin line
Although sugar is an important part of the rehydration process when you have diarrhea, too much -dilutions containing more than 3% sugar- can worsen the symptoms of diarrhea. According to Brown University, a dilution of approximately 1 liter of water, 1 tsp. of salt and 8 teaspoons of sugar is suitable for rehydration. The addition of more sugar to the dilution produces an osmotic effect in the colon. During this osmosis, the colon gets excessive amounts of water, stool softeners and aggravates the diarrhea condition.
Soda and fruit juices
Fruit juice and soda should never be options to remedy the hydration that results from diarrhea. The content of sugar in soda and fruit juice is too high and only exacerbates the condition. According to the New York University Langone Medical Center, in addition to an excess of sugar, soft drinks and fruit juices are not electrolyte suppliers, which are essential for rehydration. Sports drinks contain the correct ratio of sugar and electrolytes to hydrate without worsening the condition of diarrhea.
If you're prone to diarrhea, skip low-calorie sweeteners. Erythritol, D-tagatose, sorbitol, mannitol and xylitol are between 50 and 92% sweeter than common table sugar - this sweetness can come with a price if you are sensitive to sugar alcohols. The Harvard Medical School explains that these sweeteners can cause gas and diarrhea. Because the intestines absorb sugar alcohol slowly and incompletely, and if you already have diarrhea, the use of low-calorie sweeteners can aggravate your condition.