Monday, November 12, 2007

Diarrhea: what foods help?

I never thought that poop could explode out of a diaper and arrive as far up a baby's back as the shoulder blades. Wow! What a rough week! Talk about a bad spell of diarrhea and diaper rash. Here's what I've learned from this experience.

Day 4, I try specific foods:
On day 4, I realized that the diarrhea was not going away by itself, so I had to do something. I changed Mikey's diet to foods that I read help relieve diarrhea (he has no other symptoms). His poops solidified after 24 hours, but he was still pooping four or five times a day. He normally poops once. Here is a list of foods recommended by The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods:


  • herbal teas
  • vegetable broth
  • fruit juices
  • electrolyte replacement drinks
  • equal parts of sauerkraut and tomato juice
  • pears
  • apples
  • grapefruit
  • carrots
  • potatoes
  • beets
  • blueberries
  • carob
  • mango

My pediatrician recommended the BRAT diet:
  • bananas
  • rice
  • applesauce
  • toast

The American Academy of Pediatrics says that most children with mild diarrhea can continue to eat a normal diet. Given all this information, I am keeping to his normal diet while emphasizing these specific foods.

A 48 hours glimpse of Mikey's diarrhea diet:

Breakfast: pear juice (juiced at home), potatoes and eggs
Lunch: blueberries, yogurt
Snack: smoothie (milk, bananas, carob).
Dinner: rice cooked in chicken broth

Breakfast: I made him cream of wheat but he wouldn't eat it because it was too hot (even when it was cold!). So, he ate a slice of bread with almond butter.
Lunch: raisins, pasta with olive oil
Snack: smoothie (blueberries, rice milk, kefir, carob)
Dinner: apple juice (juiced at home), potato and onion soup over rice

Day 7, I try probiotics:
Hmmm. Diarrhea is persisting. There's no other sign of a cold. The advice nurse says it's a bug that we just need to wait out. In the back of my mind, I believe that the reason for his diarrhea is the antibiotics that he finished two weeks ago. The antibiotics cleared his cough and I am grateful, but it is no secret that they also wipe out the good bugs that help with digestion. I called my doctor to see what he thought about probiotics. He had the nurse call me to say that there is no proof that they work. I decided to bite the bullet and sprinkle a little probiotic powder into his smoothie. Now this might be coincidental, but his diarrhea cleared the next day.

Diaper Rash Remedy
Through all this I learned that sometimes common sense is the best solution to diaper rash. The last time I went to see Mikey's pediatrician for a diaper rash, he wrote a prescription for a $50 diaper rash cream and gave us a sample of a $250 diaper rash cream (both not covered by insurance). Our former, adored nanny recommend that we wash his butt with a little soap and water after each dirty diaper. She told us that her son's pediatrician recommend this for his diaper rashes. Racing for the kitchen sink with a squirmy 18 month old is not ideal, but the diaper rash was gone even when the diarrhea persisted.

5 Comments:

Kate said...

I use Lansinoh Lanolin Breast Cream for my daughter's diaper rash and it worked great. It's the cream in the purple bottle that you use when nursing. I never needed it when I was nursing so I made use of it later. And it's all natural.

virginie said...

It is funny (well actually NOT funny) but Sogo took his first antibiotics two weeks ago; I don't like it neither but he had a severe ear infection and I had to go to emergency. Well, I was expecting him to have diarrhea so I didn't hesitate to give probiotics, (twice a day, according to his homeopatic doctor)! I was giving probiotic a lot during his first year, here doctors recommend it for the small babies whose digestive system is so fragile, especially if they have an allergic background.
I like your idea of raw milk, but since Sogo has tendencies to skin allergies, I don't give any cow products for safety ... what do you think?

Anonymous said...

WHEN MY SON HAD A BAD DIAPER RASH. THE WEATHER WAS WARM ENOUGH I TOOK HIM T OTHE BEACH AND THAT SALT WATER CLEARED IT RIGHT UP. I WAS AMAZEDAND I SAVED MONEY.

Anonymous said...

Wash the area with soap and water every time a diaper is changed. Use Desitin, egg whites and corn starch powder.

M. Hopson said...

sounds like probiotics did the job :) at first I don't believe that probiotics could have an effect either because when I was in antibiotics, I ate yogurt. Little did i know that yogurt bought at stores are sugary and just don't have enough live bacteria :| I'm just curious, what probiotic powder did you use?

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