Have you ever experienced diarrhea? It can be exhausting and uncomfortable, but thankfully, herbs can be a great solution. Herbal remedies are a great, safe way to treat minor diarrhea. Certain herbs are proven to act as antidiarrheal agents, helping reduce the number of trips to the restroom while improving digestive system health when all is said and done.
So, which herbs are good for diarrhea? Well, that depends on different factors – from the underlying cause of your symptoms to whether or not you prefer a concoction with natural sweeteners – there are plenty of options out there!
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best herbs for treating diarrhea and how you can use them to get relief from your symptoms quickly and naturally. So let’s dive in!
What is Diarrhea?
Diarrhea is a common medical condition in which we experience watery and frequent bowel movement. The cause of sudden diarrhea can be anything from food poisoning to a viral infection, or it could be due to an adverse reaction to certain medications.
But what exactly is going on inside the digestive system that results in these loose stools? Good question! It all comes down to how our gastrointestinal tracts absorb fluids while digesting food. When pathogens or other triggers enter our system, our body attempts to counter any harmful effects by increasing the speed of digestion, resulting in looser stools and water loss from the body.
This rapid transit of macromolecules through the intestines also affects the absorption of minerals and nutrients that help keep us healthy, so severe bouts of diarrhea may leave us feeling quite depleted after some time.
Which Herbs Are Good For Diarrhea
Herbal remedies are a great way to treat diarrhea, as they can relieve symptoms while improving digestive system health. The following herbs are known to act as antidiarrheal agents and have been proven effective in treating minor bouts of diarrhea:
One of the best herbs for calming down diarrhea symptoms is chamomile. You might be familiar with chamomile as a tea you drink before bed to help you relax, but it turns out that chamomile has many other benefits beyond just helping you sleep. Chamomile contains compounds that have anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties.
When you’re experiencing diarrhea, your intestinal muscles contract too quickly, leading to loose, watery stools that are oh-so-familiar. The antispasmodic properties in chamomile can help to slow down these contractions, which in turn, can help to reduce the frequency and intensity of your diarrhea.
In addition to its antispasmodic properties, chamomile also has a soothing effect on the digestive system. This can lessen gut inflammation, which is beneficial if an infection or inflammation brings on diarrhea in the digestive tract.
Just steep 1-2 tablespoons of dried chamomile flowers in boiling water for 5–10 minutes to prepare chamomile tea. For symptom relief, you can have this tea up to three times per day. Additionally, you could try chamomile tinctures or capsules if you don’t feel like drinking tea.
🪴 Slippery Elm
Slippery Elm has long been known as a home remedy for irritable bowel syndrome and diarrhea. Its high mucilage content makes it an especially effective herb for these conditions. Mucilage is a gel-like material that creates a slippery, protective coating on the lining of your intestines – soothing, protecting, and encouraging their healing. It’s also packed with other healthful vitamins and minerals, making Slippery Elm an overall great choice!
The best way to use Slippery Elm for diarrhea is to mix either the powder or inner bark powder into a herbal tea or smoothie. Simply add one teaspoon of the powder to each cup of liquid. Let it sit for approximately 5 minutes, then stir and enjoy. Anyone experiencing irritable bowel syndrome or diarrhea can find renewed hope thanks to this powerful home remedy, Slippery Elm!
Ginger is an amazing herb commonly used to treat upset stomachs, but it’s also been known to be a great herbal remedy for diarrhea too. It has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiseptic qualities that can aid in soothing and relieving upset stomachs. As a result, ginger works as an effective way to help with diarrhea.
To use ginger for diarrhea, it’s best enjoyed as a tea. Simply boil some freshly chopped ginger root in water before straining it and adding honey or another sweetener. The result is a hot “ginger tea” that can help ease upset stomachs and fight back against diarrhea.
Ginger also comes in dried and powdered forms depending on availability. However, using fresh ginger yields the best results when looking for relief from an upset stomach or loose stool. Regardless of what type you choose, it’s one of nature’s most potent remedies for staying healthy!
Being a carminative and antispasmodic herb, it relaxes and soothes the digestive muscles while lifting digestive discomfort. However, because peppermint can also help reduce bile production, it’s best not to use undiluted by those with bile deficiency or digestive inflammation. Thus, it could further impair digestion and worsen your diarrhea. Instead, use it in combination with other digestive herbs to relieve digestive discomfort.
To use it for digestive relief, add some dried peppermint leaves to your tea infusions or use peppermint essential oils for topical application around the abdomen area. For those who don’t like to mix their herbal teas themselves, there are herbal teas made from blends containing peppermint that you can purchase from health stores or online which can be useful too!
Fennel is an excellent herb for dealing with acute and chronic diarrhea. This herb has historically been used to reduce intestinal spasms, decrease abdominal discomfort, and promote the digestion of fats. Drinking fennel tea regularly can help to relax the digestive muscles and soothe irritated intestines. As little as 2 or 3 teaspoons of fennel seeds dissolved in a cup of water drunk three times a day can help relieve occasional episodes of diarrhea.
Of course, people with chronic diarrhea should consult with their doctor before starting this treatment. For those looking to benefit from fennel tea more quickly, add fennel seeds to boiling water and drink as soon as it cools enough to sip. In either case, ensure fennel-infused tea is consumed no more than thrice daily for the best health results when treating diarrhea symptoms.
🪴 Lemon Balm
This fragrant member of the mint family has long been used as a natural remedy for stomach cramps and nausea. It can be taken in a few different forms; lemon juice, tea, and even extracts. What makes lemon balm special in improving digestion is its ability to relax the digestive tract muscles. It allows for better water absorption and more uniform stool output.
To get the most out of this remedy, boiling one teaspoon of lemon balm per cup of water is suggested. Then, allow it to steep for 15 minutes before sipping throughout the day.
Marjoram is a medicinal plant known for its digestive benefits. It has been used traditionally to reduce the symptoms of diarrhea. However, it can also provide relief from other digestive problems such as bloating and cramping. The leaves or flowers can be consumed in either tea or capsule form, though marjoram essential oil is often used to make a medicinal tincture.
To use marjoram as an herbal remedy, try adding a teaspoon of dried herb to one cup of boiled water and steep for 10 minutes before straining the liquid. Then drink throughout the day according to your individual needs and preferences.
Additionally, for those who want to avoid ingesting the herb internally, mixing marjoram essential oil with a carrier oil and applying externally near the abdominal area may help relieve the pain associated with diarrhea symptoms.
Belonging to the Apiaceae family, this garden staple is found in kitchens of many nations. An interesting feature that may surprise you is that its seeds possess anti-diarrheal properties. There are various ways to use the herb, but boiling its seeds in water and then consuming the liquid orally has been long recommended as a cure.
Furthermore, holistic practitioners suggest using coriander leaves on salads to increase their therapeutic properties. Interestingly, they even recommend adding garlic and sugarcane juice as part of the treatment regimen, which could offer optimum effectiveness.
However, be sure to consume it in every recommended quantity. Otherwise, it can worsen your condition – but if done right, it could effectively reduce episodes of loose stools and cramps!
Additional Natural Remedy For Diarrhea
Aside from the herbal remedies mentioned above, some other natural treatments may be useful in treating diarrhea. Below are some additional natural remedies that may provide relief from diarrhea symptoms:
🚰 Drink Plenty of Fluids
Although diarrhea isn’t usually serious, it can cause dehydration if left untreated. Fortunately, one of the simplest forms of natural remedy for diarrhea involves drinking plenty of fluids! Drinking water and other clear liquids can help replace fluids lost during bouts of diarrhea. Fluids also help to pass stools more easily so that mucous and bacteria are expelled from the digestive system.
Additionally, over-the-counter rehydration solutions such as Gatorade or Pedialyte can effectively provide electrolytes to those who suffer from frequent episodes of diarrhea. These drinks can also contain important vitamins and minerals necessary for proper digestion.
Avoiding sugary, spicy foods, or caffeinated sodas when dealing with diarrhea is essential, as they may aggravate symptoms due to their potential laxative effects on the body’s digestive systems.
🍌 Eat a BRAT Diet
BRAT stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast – all considered bland, low-fiber, and easy-to-digest foods that can help soothe the upset stomach commonly associated with diarrhea. In addition to eating these four items, staying hydrated with sips of water throughout the day is important. Eating small meals every few hours can help with discomfort as well.
The BRAT diet should only be followed briefly until you start feeling better. Then, normal eating habits can resume. If your symptoms don’t improve after 24 hours, consult your doctor, as medications may be needed next. But in the meantime, a bowl of cooked oatmeal or cream of wheat and a few crackers is also recommended as a natural remedy for diarrhea. Just another gentle option if the BRAT diet isn’t quite doing the trick!
🏃 Avoid Exercise
While moderate physical activity can help improve digestion and reduce discomfort, over-exertion can aggravate gastrointestinal symptoms. Exercise of any kind is likely to upset the delicate balance of your digestive system, which can throw off your electrolyte balance and increase the chances of dehydration from frequent trips to the bathroom.
Instead of expending valuable energy through exercise, resting while you’re suffering from diarrhea is important. Taking care of yourself is key to feeling better sooner. Getting enough sleep and avoiding excess stress that could further flare up any GI issues you’re dealing with. Avoiding exercises during this time may not be ideal if you hope to get a workout in.
Thus, it will give you essential rest time so your body can repair itself and return to good health as soon as possible.
🫖 Drink Tea
There are a few different types of tea that are known to help treat this uncomfortable condition. Black tea is usually the most recommended for this purpose, as it has high levels of tannins which can help absorb excess water in the body.
Green tea is also a great option, as it contains compounds that may help reduce inflammation and combat bacterial infections. Drinking iced versions of these teas can also be useful, as cold liquids can help soothe diarrhea-related stomach pains.
🧋 Consider Probiotics
Probiotics are not just great for your gut health in general, but they can also be a great treat when it comes to easing off persistent diarrheal problems! Why? Well, to keep things easy, let’s break it down. Probiotics essentially refer to healthy bacteria or even yeast, which help restore balance in our stomachs.
And given diarrhea arises due to an upset balance in intestinal flora that leads to abnormal digestion and excretion – such remedies tend to really get the job done! The best part? Having probiotics won’t just reduce chronic diarrhea, but they can also provide astounding protection against bad bacteria which causes them in the long run!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is traditional Chinese medicine safe for treating diarrhea?
While it has been used as an alternative form of medicine for thousands of years, primary medical research into its potential benefits when treating this particular ailment is scarce and inconclusive. Even though TCM is considered safe in a supervised environment and with qualified specialists, there are no guarantees that it will be effective for every person. Always consult your doctor first to minimize the risk associated with alternative treatments and ensure optimal results!
Q: What causes inflammatory bowel disease?
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an umbrella term that describes a group of chronic illnesses, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. So, what causes IBD? There isn’t one single cause that doctors can identify as the culprit. Instead, it seems to be caused by a mix of several things. For instance, many experts believe genes are a major factor responsible for up to 30% of IBD cases. Another influencing factor could be your immune system. It’s thought to play a role in developing some types of IBD. On top of this, environmental triggers like changes in lifestyle or diet seem to contribute to flaring up symptoms.
Q: What astringent herb can help with diarrhea?
Astringent herbs contain compounds known as tannins, which have a drying effect that can help reduce loose stools and combat some of the gastrointestinal distress associated with diarrhea. Chamomile, jasmine tea, and green tea are all examples of astringent herbs that can be beneficial in cases of diarrhea. Plus, they’re delicious and easy to find! Even if your particular bout of diarrhea doesn’t respond to astringent herbs, it’s worth a shot.
Q: Are there spices that can help with diarrheal symptoms?
A few examples include cumin, coriander, and turmeric. Of course, it’s always best to consult an experienced medical practitioner before trying any home remedy. That being said, studies have found that spices such as these can help reduce symptoms associated with diarrhea because of their anti-inflammatory properties. Cumin has been known to soothe guts and fight infection. Coriander can stop cramps; and turmeric is known for its ability to reduce intestinal gas buildup. So if a tummy bug takes over from time to time, consider adding a sprinkle of one or more of these wonder spices!
Q: How to prevent diarrhea?
The most important thing to do is ensure your food and water are safe and clean. Bacteria in contaminated food or water can cause diarrhea. Therefore, always be thorough when washing produce and cooking meat, seafood, and eggs. Plus, don’t forget that water needs to be boiled before drinking! Additionally, be aware of any potentially hazardous environments you may find yourself in a while traveling abroad. Make sure to opt for bottled or boiled drinking water whenever possible. In addition, steer clear of poorly-prepared food stalls, or even just eat out less frequently if you’re not confident in the safety of an area. A little wariness and diligence now will save lots of misery later!
Overall, it is clear that certain herbs have medicinal properties which make them effective in treating Diarrhea. Herbs like ginger and turmeric have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that help to soothe the gut and regulate digestion. The use of other natural remedies alongside these herbs, such as probiotics, can also be beneficial to those with Diarrhea in aiding a speedy recovery. Although it varies from person to person, looking into treatments such as these herbs can offer Diarrhea sufferers real relief and a better quality of life.