30 answers

What to Feed a Child with Diarrhea?

My 20 month old had the stomach flu on Thursday and Friday, was still lethargic on Saturday, and fine today, but she had diarrhea this afternoon and still isn't eating much. She hasn't vomitted since Friday night and hasn't had milk since Thursday. She cannot tolerate pedialyte for one second, nor the wal-greens brand, so our doc said to mix half gatorade and half water. That's all she's been drinking and today she ate 2 bites of ham and 2 bites of an apple for lunch, and 4 bites of chicken breast and 4 bites of rice for dinner. I know she's probably still a little queasy though. So what do you feed a child with diarrhea, and when can she go back to milk again?

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use what they call a "brat" diet. bananas, rice, applesauce, toast. keep them bland and unseasoned but are all good for not making the diarrhea worse and getting something in the stomach again. fluids are most important-especially the gatorade. stay away from fruits and juices like prune, peach, apricot, apple, grape for now as they can cause diarrhea and be harsh on an empty stomach. yes, apple juice and applesauce do opposite things! don't ask me why! hope this helps.

S. m

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The BRAT diet is the best, I would just add that the Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast be served plain. Fat (in sauces for rice or butter for toast) can irritate an upset GI tract.

As she gets better at eating the BRAT diet you can start to incorporate other foods to see if she's feeling better. Her appetite will also clue you in as to when milk can be served again (i.e. when she starts eating well she can probably have milk too).

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Try giving toast and bland things. You don't want to push her tummy to much. Jello is good to. That will help keep her hydrated, but don't give red jello, incase the vomiting starts again so you won't misake it for blood. I wouldn't push the eating issue to much, as long as she's drinking enough. I also wouldn't give milk again until the diarrhea has stopped for a few days.

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Put her on the BRATS diet for a couple of days and she should feel better (assuming it is just the flu).

Bananas
Rice
Applesauce
Toast

Make sure she is getting plenty of good fluids. Wait on milk until she is 24-48 hrs without a loose stool.

If she likes Jello, the gelatin will firm up her stool, but it is good to let diarrhea run it's course and get it out of her system.

Good luck :)

2 moms found this helpful

BRAT diet.... Bananas, rice, applesauce, toast.... all binding and good for diarrhea!

1 mom found this helpful

Hey Christy, you've gotten good advice on what to feed your daughter. I just thought I'd let you know that my ped. told us that it is normal for a child of that age to have diarrhea for up to 14 days after recovering from the stomach flu. So, if she is feeling better and eating/drinking good, don't be alarmed if it takes a little while for her bowel movements to get back to normal. :) My son woke up this morning throwing up, too -- it's going around, I just hope it doesn't hit the rest of our family on Christmas! :) Take care.

1 mom found this helpful

The BRAT diet is the best, I would just add that the Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast be served plain. Fat (in sauces for rice or butter for toast) can irritate an upset GI tract.

As she gets better at eating the BRAT diet you can start to incorporate other foods to see if she's feeling better. Her appetite will also clue you in as to when milk can be served again (i.e. when she starts eating well she can probably have milk too).

1 mom found this helpful

use what they call a "brat" diet. bananas, rice, applesauce, toast. keep them bland and unseasoned but are all good for not making the diarrhea worse and getting something in the stomach again. fluids are most important-especially the gatorade. stay away from fruits and juices like prune, peach, apricot, apple, grape for now as they can cause diarrhea and be harsh on an empty stomach. yes, apple juice and applesauce do opposite things! don't ask me why! hope this helps.

S. m

1 mom found this helpful

We always follow the BRAT diet too. Hope that helps.

1 mom found this helpful

Our dr reccomended yogurt with cultures when my daughter had a similar stomach bug a few weeks ago.

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The BRAT diet (bananas, apples, rice and toast)used to be the recommended diet for diarrhea but, now the research shows that it really doesn't matter. AS LONG AS YOU ARE PUSHING THE FLUIDS. That is really the most important part. There are lots of recipes for "ORAL REHYDRATION SOLUTION" that you can find on the web for kids who are throwing up. When kids are having lots of diarrhea and vomiting, they lose a lot of sodium so that is the main electrolyte to replenish.
It sounds like you really don't need to worry about that with your little one now, though. It sounds like she is recovering well - those 'bites' of food she has kept down are actually impressive. Her appetite will come back gradually. Keep it bland and give her what she likes along with lots of fluids til then.
BTW, I am a Nurse Practitioner. GOOD LUCK!!

1 mom found this helpful

Saltine crackers are always safe. Dry toast, jello, and chix broth....

Cinnamon and ginger. If she will give her a slice of cinamon toast or applesauce with cinnamon sugar in it. You can also try making rice in milk (instead of water)
receipe:
2-3 cups milk
1 cup rice (long cooking)
add cinnamon and sugar to taste
handful of raisins.
Cook rice in the milk, you want it a little soupy looking, you can add milk after it is cooked. Cook about 20 minutes. add rest of ingredients.
You can season with ginger, nutmeg, cloves also.
This is basically rice pudding but works great for upset tummys in kids and adults. It is heavy so it can't be thrown up easily and the cinnamon and ginger settle the stomach.
In a pinch or whole traveling try ginger snap cookies.

Popsicles, jello, dry toast, ginger ale, 7 up, sprite (you can let these sit out and go flat). Wouldn't worry too much about food....the child is the best indicator as to when they are ready to eat. Stay away from dairy and fat!!! Although you could try a poached egg or a boiled egg as soon as they are showing that they can keep food down and in! You mainly want to make sure she doesn't get dehydrated. You'll know this if she isn't peeing throughout the day. Whenever you're not sure then call your pediatrician and/or nurse's line. THere's no such thing as a stupid call to the pediatrician's office!

Banana
Rice
Applesauce
Toast

Water, popsicles

I'm pretty sure yogurt is good too.

I'd lay off the meat and milk until symptoms clear up entirely.

well,
just one random word - pork of all kinds can cause lots of health issues, one being stomach bugs. its your own business, but i would stay away from pork and pork products.

good idea to avoid milk. that will help too...
what you can do is possibly feed her some constipating foods, like bananas.
however, i would probably think that a bit of diarhea is normal after a stomach bug. those buggers gotta get flushed out somehow.
toast, crackers, WHOLE GRAINS are also good. :D
yogurt maybe?
just go with what your child wants to eat. they usually will have a taste for something. chicken soup? something like that? bland foods i spose.
i wouldnt worry about diarhea as long as shes getting lots of water to cover for it.
anyway,
good luck.

My doctors have always said the BRAT diet that I follow

Bananas
Rice
Applesauce
Toast

I wouldn't put her back on milk until all the queasiness is gone. I even had my baby on apple juice and water for a week with no milk. Milk is so hard on their tummies.

Also, a good thing for hydration is frozen popsicles and jello that isn't solidified.

Hope she's feeling better soon !

Bananas are fantastic for diarrhea. It is full of potassium also which is great because diarrhea gets them so dehydrated and the potassium keeps them from getting cramps due to dehydration. Bananas also have the tendency to to act like pepto-bismol where as it will help stop the runs.

Good luck!

She's actually eaten quite a bit of solids, for someone who has the stomach flu.

I would wait a few days on the milk. Keep giving her the water/gatorade mix, and white grape juice or apple juice if she'll drink it.

If she's still queasy than do what everyone else has been saying. If she is feeling better and since she hasn't thrown up since Friday, I wouldn't worry about the diarrhea too much. As long as she is staying hydrated, feed her what she wants - within reason :). Good luck. My kids went through that at Christmas time last year. It was awful, but hopefully your daughter is on the upswing.

We go by the BRAT diet.
B=bananas
R=rice (or PLAIN mashed potatoes...no butter or gravy)
A=applesauce
T=toast (again, no butter....maybe a LITTLE jelly for flavor)

Good luck!

I would stick with bland foods. you can try the brat diet, bananas, rice, applesauce, toast. just basically avoid anything greasy, spicy, fatty - anything that may irritate her stomach. Also try to avoid juice as that can make diarrhea worse. As ar as milk goes, she can have that as soon as she can tolerate it. Yogurt may also be helpful if she will eat that. Good luck, just keep pushing fluids.

There's the classic BRAT suggestion: Bananas, Rice (or Rice cereal), Applesauce, Toast (plain).

We use plain white bread, toasted or not. We stick with bland foods and soft foods. Think of what you might want to eat if you felt that awful.

And I agree- as long as she is keeping up her fluids, don't worry too much about the food intake. A few days of not eating much won't hurt her.

Bland and soft.

I have heard that warm milk is more soothing on the stomach than cold, so when you are ready to try milk again, try it warm.

My 26 month old, DB, just went through this. After he stopped throwing up we basically let him eat what he wanted. He didn't have full-blown diarrhea, but had "loose BM" 2-3 times a day for a full week.

Basically his appetite was minimal all week and then Saturday he acted like he couldn't get enough food. I would just keep offering things that your little one likes and keep pushing fluids.

This really seemed like an awful bug -- everyone in our house got it.

Good Luck!

My doctor recommended Propel water instead of gatorade and it seemed like my kids liked it better. Whem they have the stomach flu stick to the BRAT diet (bananas, rice, apple(sauce) and toast). Stick with that until they are better. You can return to the milk when the diarhea ends a little bit at a time.

We always use the BRAT diet with our kids when they are vomiting or have diarrhea...Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and dry Toast. It usually works pretty good. And we also use Gatorade because that seems to stay down better than water. We avoid milk products until all symptoms are gone. Hope that helps. :)

Like many others said, follow the BRAT diet. Also, diary wreaks havoc on an already upset digestive tract, so avoid if you can. Stick w/ water, pedialyte, etc. until all diarrhea is gone. I feel your pain b/c my son had something similiar to this when he was only 8 months old, and he wouldn't touch the pedialyte. I was so worried that he was becoming dehydrated, but I just kept pushing those liquids. Also, you can freeze the gatorade/pedialyte, and your little one may be more apt to take it in popsicle form. Good luck!!

Try giving toast and bland things. You don't want to push her tummy to much. Jello is good to. That will help keep her hydrated, but don't give red jello, incase the vomiting starts again so you won't misake it for blood. I wouldn't push the eating issue to much, as long as she's drinking enough. I also wouldn't give milk again until the diarrhea has stopped for a few days.

We were told to feed our son Bananas, Rice, Apples, potatoes and toast or bread. Thsi is supposed to help block them up a little. I recommend lots of diaper cream too!

Our daughter had the same stomach virus a couple of weeks ago. She ate very little for about 6 days and didn't want milk at all during that time. We also couldn't get her to drink Pedialyte or anything but plain water. She ate a lot of toast and crackers and some banana. I had the same virus a week later. It has been 11 days and I still am not eating like I normally do. As long as your daughter is drinking the gatorade and water so she doesn't get dehydrated she will be OK. We also tried the BRAT diet that someone else had mentioned but toast and crackers were about all our daughter wanted to eat. Don't try to "force" her to eat anything. We had strongly encouraged our daughter to eat one night (chicken and potatoes and milk) and she was vomiting again within a couple of hours. If your daughter's virus follows what seems to be the pattern I've seen with our daughter and other kids at her daycare, it will take about a week for her to get over it.

I will agree with the BRAT diet.

Most doctors recommend the brat diet which is bannanas, rice ,applesauce and toast. If you go online and look up brat diet for kids with diarrhea there will be information you can read. Good luck!

Banana, Rice, Applesauce, Toast. The BRAT diet as it is so affectionatley called. I have also been told that White grape juice is also helpful with diarreah. I would just follow her lead. If she starts wanting food, just give her whatever she wants. Watered down kool-aid works okay too. Just make sure that she's not getting sugared up-that will make diarreah worse. Good Luck!

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