One of the many different terms that you’re likely to hear thrown around if you begin to research nutrition is flavonoids. Flavonoids are among the most beneficial naturally occurring chemical compounds in different types of foods. They are plant based and are split up into a number of different sub categories and groups. All of them provide you with an excellent range of health benefits.
One of the most famous benefits of flavonoids is their use as an antioxidant. Antioxidants are substances that fight off dangerous oxygen species in your body and help to prevent cell damage. Research that has recently been conducted has also expanded the benefits of flavonoids to include another less well foreseen benefit too; flavonoids have been linked to lowered instances of diarrhea in some cases.
Types of Flavonoids that Are Beneficial for Diarrhea
Whether you have diarrhea already or if you’re looking to prevent an occurrence of this relatively common condition, there are certain types of flavonoids that are perhaps more beneficial than others. Specifically, the studies that have been done have shown that flavonoids found in cocoa beans are the best for preventing and reducing symptoms of diarrhea. These are therefore found in many different chocolate products, like cocoa powder and chocolate itself.
For the best concentration of flavonoids, stick with dark chocolate; the darker the chocolate, the higher the percentage that is made from cocoa, and the more flavonoids that you’ll get per serving. Dark chocolate is also typically lower in sugar than milk chocolate, making it generally healthier for you.
How Flavonoids Prevent Diarrhea
Although it’s still not well understood, researches believe that flavonoids help to prevent diarrhea by binding with certain cells inside of your gastrointestinal tract. These cells are responsible for excreting salt and fluid from the small intestine. Diarrhea is caused by an excess of salt and fluid inside of your gastrointestinal tract. Thus, with flavonoids present to help your system to retain its fluid, you’ll be less likely to suffer from the effects of diarrhea.
There are a number of benefits to this property of flavonoids. First, they will limit your likelihood of having diarrhea in the first place, making you generally more comfortable. Second, and more importantly for your overall health, they’ll help you to retain fluid that you’d otherwise lose. Diarrhea is dangerous because it oftentimes leads to dehydration. Retaining the fluid in your system with flavonoids is a good way to limit your loss of fluid overall and to prevent dehydration. If you’ve had diarrhea, however, you should still plan to drink as many fluids as possible.
For more ways to help prevent diarrhea, speak with your doctor. Depending upon the cause of the symptoms, you maybe able to take certain medicines to help.