Foods to eat when you have gastroenteritis

December 2, 2018

Diarrhea, abdominal cramps and vomiting are the main symptoms of gastroenteritis. Caused in most cases by a virus, this disease can also be caused by germs such as bacteria or parasites. These pathogens will multiply in the intestine and cause inflammation. Digestion is then disturbed and the bacterial flora completely unbalanced.


Eating properly during gastroenteritis is not easy because of constant diarrhea and vomiting.

To rebuild intestinal flora and reduce the duration and intensity of symptoms, an appropriate nutrition is strongly recommended. In this article, we list the recommended foods to consume and to avoid.




The first recommendation is to drink plenty of water. Diarrhea and vomiting cause relatively high losses of water and mineral salts. To compensate, consume at least 2 liters of plain water a day, to alternate with salted broths and herbal teas.


Coffee and alcohol are to be avoided because they will cause the opposite effect, i.e. increase dehydration.
Also avoid milk and tea.
Ban soft drinks that cause bloating and fruit juice (too acidic).

Even if you are not hungry, you must force yourself to eat in small amounts, several times a day. The first days of the gastroenteritis take only small meals such as white rice, well-cooked carrot, steamed fish.

Here is what you can eat:
Well cooked white rice
Potatoes with water
Steamed or grilled chicken
Grilled meats
Lean fish
Boiled peeled vegetables
Dry grilled white bread
Carrot purees
Ripe bananas or apple compote/puree.



You should avoid all fatty foods as well as those containing fiber at the risk of amplifying symptoms and delay healing.
Here is a list of foods you should avoid:

Vegetables and green vegetables
Fruits (except ripe banana)
Whole starchy foods
Legumes (lentils, chickpeas, ...)
Spicy dishes
Condiments such as mustard, ketchup, pickles and pickles
Chocolate, milk, butter, cheese

Two to three days after the end of the symptoms, you should be able to gradually return to a normal diet.



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