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Home arrow Health arrow Gut Health arrow Why Do I Have Diarrhea Every Morning?

Why Do I Have Diarrhea Every Morning?

Dr. Donika Vata
Written by Donika Vata, MD
HR_author_photo_Edna
Fact checked by Edna Skopljak, MD
Last update: October 13, 2023
7 min read 510 Views 0 Comments
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We examine possible causes and solutions to this delicate issue.

why do i have diarrhea every morning

Morning diarrhea is characterized by watery or loose stools occurring in the morning. While experiencing occasional morning diarrhea is usually nothing to worry about, it could signify an underlying problem with your digestive tract if it occurs daily.

We are here to explain possible reasons behind this phenomenon and discuss actionable tips to address the issue for a healthier start to your mornings.

Why Do I Have Diarrhea Every Morning? 6 Possible Reasons

Understanding the leading causes of morning diarrhea is essential because it can help you figure out the proper treatment and get your mornings back on track. When we delve into the nuances of this delicate issue, we can name 6 main reasons that cause it:

#1 Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common causes of morning diarrhea. It’s a chronic condition that affects your intestines and stomach and can lead to frequent bowel movements in the morning.

Other than diarrhea, the most common symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome include bowel spasms, abdominal bloating, intestinal gas, mucus in the stool, constipation, and abdominal cramps.

#2 Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) refers to a medical condition that causes inflammation in your digestive tract and leads to chronic diarrhea.

It’s basically an umbrella term that’s used to describe multiple intestinal disorders, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Ulcerative colitis creates sores on the large intestine’s lining, whereas the inflammation in Crohn’s disease can spread beyond the digestive tract lining, getting into the surrounding tissue.

Other symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease include abdominal pain, weight loss, bowel urgency, fever, and rectal bleeding.

#3 Caffeine

If you drink caffeinated drinks, such as matcha, green tea, and coffee, in the morning, you can fall victim to morning diarrhea. That’s because caffeine relaxes your digestive tract muscles and increases your stomach acid levels, which can lead to diarrhea. Nonetheless, it’s worth noting that not everyone will experience this, and some people may need larger amounts of caffeine to notice any effect.

#4 Alcohol and nicotine

Smoking before going to bed and/or consuming alcohol late at night can also cause morning diarrhea. Alcohol can affect the muscle movements in your intestine, and smoking increases your risk of developing several gastronomical disorders, including Crohn’s disease and peptic ulcer.

#5 Food sensitivities and intolerances

Food allergies or intolerances can cause multiple health problems, such as itching or tingling in the mouth, swelling of the face, shortness of breath, and morning diarrhea. For instance, lactose intolerance in adults is common, and it can lead to loose stools.

Important note: A viral or bacterial infection, such as rotavirus and salmonella, can also cause morning diarrhea, as they’re associated with loose bowel movements.

#6 Stress and anxiety

There’s a direct connection between stress and your gut health, and recent studies show that chronic stress can negatively impact the normal functioning of your GI tract. Therefore, if you wake up with a stressed and anxious mind, you can experience morning diarrhea.

Is Having Diarrhea Every Morning Bad?

Having a bout of morning diarrhea once in a while is normal. But if it happens every day over several days, it could be a symptom of a health problem.

It means that your colon, where stool is formed, is trying to tell you something’s not quite right. In such a case, it’s important to figure out the root cause contributing to this persistent issue.

A healthcare professional should be consulted if you have persistent diarrhea every morning. Leaving chronic diarrhea untreated can result in dehydration and other health complications, so it’s essential to seek an evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment as soon as possible.

What Foods Might Trigger Morning Diarrhea?

Certain foods can play a role in triggering morning diarrhea. Here’s a list of some potential culprits:

  • Spicy foods: While spicy foods add more flavor to dishes, they can cause watery stools, especially those your stomach isn’t accustomed to.
  • Fried or fatty foods: Fried, greasy, or fatty foods are rich in saturated and trans fats, and they can spell trouble. These foods are usually low in nutritional value, making them pass through the gut swiftly, which can cause diarrhea.
  • Dairy foods: Lactose-containing dairy products might not sit well with everyone. If you find yourself experiencing watery stools after consuming milk or other dairy products, lactose intolerance could be the reason.
  • FODMAPs: Poorly digested sugars like lactose, fructose, and artificial sweeteners, collectively known as FODMAPs, can lead to diarrhea. Common FODMAP sources include asparagus, cashews, pistachios, honey, several legumes, garlic, onions, rye, and wheat.

How to Cure Morning Diarrhea: 4 Actionable Tips 

If you experience morning diarrhea, it’s important to identify and address the underlying cause(s). Here are some tried and true tips that may help you with this problem:

#1 Make dietary changes

One of the most effective ways to cure morning diarrhea is to make healthy dietary changes. First of all, you should steer clear of food options that might trigger this issue.

Additionally, consider adding more fiber to your diet, as it can help you deal with diarrhea and improve your gut health. If you find it challenging to increase your fiber intake through food, you can use fiber supplements.

Another effective way to treat diarrhea is to consume more probiotics because studies show they can make diarrhea go away faster.

#2 Stay well-hydrated

It is common to experience dehydration during diarrhea, which can worsen the symptoms and make you feel weak, faint, or dizzy. Keep hydrated to replace lost fluids and prevent dehydration.

The loss of sodium, potassium, and chloride from diarrhea can contribute to electrolyte imbalances. Various bodily functions depend on electrolytes, including maintaining proper muscle and nerve function. Electrolyte-containing fluids, such as oral rehydration solutions or sports drinks, can help restore the balance of these important elements.

#3 Learn to manage stress and anxiety

The impact of stress and anxiety on your digestive system can be reduced when you learn effective techniques for managing stress and anxiety, such as deep breathing, meditation, mindfulness, or yoga. In turn, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal problems may be alleviated or prevented.

#4 Treat underlying health conditions

If you have morning diarrhea because of some health condition, like irritable bowel syndrome or inflammatory bowel disease, make sure you visit your healthcare provider. Based on specific diagnosis, they might prescribe immunosuppressant drugs like methotrexate and cyclosporine to treat these conditions. 

When to Seek Medical Advice

If morning diarrhea persists beyond a few days, it’s time to reach out to your healthcare provider. Sometimes, dietary choices or medications may be at play, and your doctor can help identify and address the root cause.

However, certain red flags demand immediate attention. If you experience dehydration and struggle to keep food or water down, encounter severe abdominal pain, notice blood in your stool, or have a fever, don’t wait – visit your doctor immediately.

A Word From Our MD

Expert image border HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Rosmy Barrios, MD
Medical advisor for Health Reporter

If you find yourself dealing with morning diarrhea, the first thing you need to do is identify potential triggers such as spicy foods, gluten, fatty choices, caffeine, FODMAPs, and dairy.

Keep in mind that diet plays a crucial role, and adjusting yours by avoiding known triggers and introducing more fiber and probiotics can be helpful.

Staying hydrated is also important as it can accelerate the recovery process. Furthermore, combating stress and anxiety through exercise can alleviate symptoms as well.

For persistent issues beyond a few days or if warning signs like dehydration, severe pain, or blood in stool arise, seek immediate medical attention. Your doctor will conduct blood work and stool tests to pinpoint the cause, ensuring timely and personalized treatment.

FAQs

Why do I get diarrhea after drinking water in the morning?

If you get diarrhea after drinking water in the morning, it might mean that the water is contaminated and contains diarrhea-causing germs like Giardia and Campylobacter. However, there are other potential reasons, so if the water is not an issue, consult a medical professional immediately.

Should I be worried if I have diarrhea every day?

Yes, daily diarrhea should raise concerns, as it may indicate underlying issues like food allergies, medications, or digestive problems.

How much diarrhea is too much?

Having over 10 loose stools daily is considered severe diarrhea, and it’s too much. If left untreated, dehydration from severe cases can be life-threatening.

Why do I have diarrhea, but I’m not sick?

If you’re experiencing diarrhea and the root cause is not an acute illness, you might not feel sick. Usually, it happens because of poor food choices.

Conclusion

Suffering from morning diarrhea is a frustrating experience, capable of casting a shadow over your entire day. Rooted in factors like food sensitivities, stress, dietary choices, and health conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, it demands a proactive approach.

So, if you have morning diarrhea, consider improving your diet, staying hydrated, performing exercise regularly, calming your mind, and treating health conditions.

However, should these efforts fall short and symptoms persist beyond a couple of days, seeking guidance from your doctor is crucial. They’ll find out the root cause of the problem and guide you in the right direction.

Written by Donika Vata, MD
Dr. Donika Vata is a highly accomplished MD whose extensive experience in the healthcare industry spans over 5 years, making her a distinguished Medical Writer and Researcher for the esteemed Health Reporter. Notably, she also holds the role of a General Practice Doctor and has rendered her exceptional patient care services in various clinics worldwide.
The article was fact checked by Edna Skopljak, MD
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Dr. Donika Vata
Written by Donika Vata, MD
HR_author_photo_Edna
Fact checked by Edna Skopljak, MD
Last update: October 13, 2023
7 min read 510 Views 0 Comments
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