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White rice as a treatment for diarrhea
Jul 31, 2000

Just a helpful hint for folks dealing with HIV-related diarrhea. White rice and rice water! I've been Poz since the mid 80s. After several infections, drug resistance and t-cell counts around 0, I've discovered the joys of white rice and a low fat/low insoluble fiber diet. For me white rice is better than brown rice (I guess the "husk" irritates my GI tract). I make a big pot of boiling water and add a small amount of uncooked white rice 1/2 cup, cook for 45 minutes and a soupy, tasteless, white rice water develops, drain the liquid into a container and drink 2 or three times during the day, eat the overcooked rice (if possible). I've tried every anti-diarrheal medication on the market. They work inconsistently and/or lose their effectiveness after a few weeks. Forget about cotton, white rice is the "fabric of our lives" : ).

Response from Dr. Fisher

This is excellent advice. When I was in Durban this month for the AIDS conference I came down with an episode of food poisoning (which for me is always diarrhea). I did not recover till I had a dinner of white rice with a "yogurt drink" as recommended by the owner at an Indian restaurant (I went with some friends to get out of the hotel, not to eat).

Alvan Fisher, M.D.



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