Traveler’s diarrhea is an acute condition which is characterized by loose motions, abdominal pain and/ or vomiting, which is attributed to bacterial or viral infection of the gastrointestinal tract. This condition is medically referred to as ‘gastroenteritis’. The term traveler’s diarrhea is derived from the fact that it is more frequently observed among travelers.
Causes Of Traveler’s Diarrhea
In most cases, traveler’s diarrhea is attributed to infection of the gastrointestinal system. The infection is caused due to eating or drinking contaminated food. Important causes linked with infection include streptococcal infection, E coli contamination, etc. Some of the other less frequent causes for traveler’s diarrhea include,
- Lactose intolerance.
- Excessive intake of Vitamin C.
- Use of artificial sweeteners like sorbitol.
- Use of over the counter antacids containing excessive amounts of magnesium.
- Certain high grade antibiotics can also lead to diarrhea, as a side effect.
Home Remedies For Traveler’s Diarrhea
Here are some essential tips that can help you remain healthy despite a traveler’s diarrhea,
- Remain hydrated: Drink plenty of water. Diarrhea is associated with excessive fluid loss, which in turn can lead to dehydration.
- Yogurt: Eat yogurt, as it contains friendly bacteria which help improve digestion. Experts suggest, depletion of these friendly bacteria is associated with loose motion and abdominal distention. Yogurt helps replenish the supply of these friendly bacteria to the intestine.
- Avoid certain foods: Diary products like cheese, milk, meat, oily food, etc should be avoided. These foods are difficult to digest and can increase strain on the intestine. Avoid fruits, especially sweet ones. These foods should be included in diet only three weeks after recovery.
- Chamomile: Chamomile tea has strong antispasmodic properties and hastens intestinal healing by reducing inflammation. Add peppermint leaves to chamomile tea and consume thrice a day. Peppermint hastens digestive recovery.
- Starchy foods: Include boiled and starchy foods like potatoes and rice in your diet. They are easy to digest, provide essential energy to recovery and easily tolerated during an episode of diarrhea.
- Blueberry roots are considered as a natural herbal remedy to treat traveler’s diarrhea
- Turmeric and Raw honey: Prepare a paste of turmeric and raw honey and consume it three times a day. Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory agent which reduces symptoms of pain and spasms. Raw honey is a natural broad spectrum anti-microbial, which fights bacterial infection.
- Orange peel: The peel of orange is considered to hasten the digestive process. Place chopped peels in a pot of water and boil it. Once cooled consume it after adding honey or sugar. Mint leaves can add flavor and also improve the action of the potion.
- Fenugreek seeds: Consume half a tablespoon of fenugreek seeds to improve overall digestion. While it is considered safe for adults, it is not proved to be effective in children.
- Mangoes, though seasonal, are potent remedies for traveler’s diarrhea. Research has proved that the active ingredients in mangoes can help fight the bacterial infection and smoothen the signs of intestinal inflammation.