Got the runs and wondering if sushi is a good choice? It’s a fair question since diarrhea requires careful eating.
The answer is you can absolutely eat sushi with diarrhea if you choose the right kinds. Sushi rice is pretty easy on the stomach when digesting. And fresh sushi can actually help calm an upset tummy.
But some sushi is riskier with diarrhea. Raw fish raises the chance of food poisoning, which you definitely want to avoid. Spicy wasabi rolls can also inflame diarrhea symptoms.
Your best bet is to stick to small amounts of cooked sushi with bland seasonings. Avoid raw fish and spicy rolls. This allows you to get nutrients while giving your stomach a break.
Interested to learn more? Keep reading for tips on the best and worst sushi types to eat with diarrhea.
Sushi Rice Is Gentle on the Stomach
Here’s some good news about sushi and diarrhea – sushi rice is usually pretty easy on the digestive system.
There are a few reasons why sushi rice is a good choice when you have an upset stomach:
- It is low in fiber, so it won’t aggravate diarrhea like high-fiber grains.
- It is easily digested and absorbed.
- It contains nutrients like magnesium and zinc to help recover from diarrhea.
Sushi rice is also low in fat, minimizing gastrointestinal distress. Just stick to reasonable portion sizes – 1 or 2 rolls max. Too much rice could lead to constipation after diarrhea.
Fresh Sushi Calms Queasy Stomachs
Not only is sushi rice usually tolerated well, but fresh sushi has benefits for queasy stomachs.
The rice, raw fish, and seaweed in sushi all have natural probiotics. These healthy gut bacteria help repopulate your microbiome after it’s been wiped out by diarrhea.
Fresh sushi also provides electrolytes like sodium and potassium that are lost during diarrhea. The amino acids in sushi protein also aid recovery.
Just be sure your sushi is freshly made, not sitting in the fridge for days. The fresher the better when stomach issues are present.
Raw Fish Raises Food Poisoning Risk
Now for the caveats: certain types of sushi are riskier choices with diarrhea.
First up is sushi containing raw fish like tuna or salmon. Raw fish always carries some hazard of parasitic or bacterial infections.
Consuming raw fish when you already have diarrhea increases the chances of developing foodborne illness. Pathogens from raw fish can exacerbate diarrhea symptoms.
It’s wise to avoid sashimi and nigiri sushi containing raw fish when you are recovering from diarrhea. Play it safe by choosing vegetarian rolls or ones with cooked seafood.
Spicy Toppings Can Inflame Digestion
Beyond raw fish, sushi containing very spicy ingredients like wasabi is not ideal for diarrhea either.
Wasabi contains chemical compounds that can irritate the stomach lining and stimulate intestinal inflammation. Other spicy toppings like Sriracha or spicy mayo work similarly.
This inflammation and irritation to your digestive tract is the last thing you want when already dealing with diarrhea. It can make symptoms like cramping even worse.
Stick to sushi rolls with mild or no spicy mayo and very minimal wasabi to keep your digestion calm.
Fried Rolls Are Harder to Digest
Fried sushi rolls can also be tough on sensitive stomachs. Options like tempura shrimp rolls often involve heavy batter and oils.
Greasy, fried foods take longer to digest. The oils can also aggravate the stomach lining and potentially worsen nausea, gas, or cramping when you have diarrhea.
Your best bet is to avoid fried tempura-style sushi rolls until your stomach woes subside.
Best Sushi Choices with Diarrhea
If you’re wondering what sushi to eat when dealing with diarrhea, here are some of the safest bets:
- Avocado rolls – Contains fiber, potassium, and probiotics.
- Cucumber rolls – Low fiber and easy to digest.
- Veg rolls with cooked carrot, zucchini, etc.
- Cooked shrimp rolls – Provides electrolytes.
- Squid or eel rolls – Lower mercury than some fish.
- Mild tuna or salmon rolls – Limit portions of raw fish.
- Brown rice sushi – More nutrients than white rice.
- Hand rolls – Less rice than regular rolls.
More Tips for Enjoying Sushi with Diarrhea
Follow these tips to keep your sushi experience pleasant when having tummy troubles:
- Stick to 1-2 rolls max or a sushi bowl.
- Avoid dunking your sushi in soy sauce, which has high sodium.
- Stay hydrated with water, green tea, or broth.
- Take probiotic supplements to replenish gut bacteria.
- Avoid going out for sushi when actively ill – get takeout instead.
- Sit down and eat slowly to aid digestion.
- Wait a few hours after eating to take anti-diarrheal medication.
- Hold off on sushi if you have an underlying infection needing treatment.
Can you eat sushi with diarrhea? In most cases, yes! Stick to gentle sushi rice in small portions along with veggies and mild cooked fish. Stay hydrated and restore your gut bacteria.
Certain high-risk sushi like raw fish or spicy rolls should be avoided until you recover. Listen to your body as well.
Use common sense, and sushi can be a nourishing food as part of recovering from diarrhea. Just focus on the sushi that soothes your stomach rather than exacerbates symptoms.