Food TypeExamples/Rationales
FibreFibre supplements for example bulking agents such as ispaghula husk, methylcellulose, sterculia or unprocessed bran
Wholegrain cereals/ bread (reduce quantities).
Porridge/oats may cause fewer problems than whole wheat based cereals.
Fruit and vegetablesRhubarb, figs, prunes/plums best avoided as contain natural laxative compounds.
Beans, pulses, cabbage and sprouts.
Initially limit to the portion sizes given on the DH list (www​.dh.gov.uk/assetRoot​/04/13/82/86/04138286.pdf), for example, one apple or 1 tablespoon dried fruit. Space out portions over day.
SpicesFor example chilli.
Artificial sweetenersMay be found in special diabetic products such as chocolate, biscuits, conserves and in some sugar free items including many nicotine replacement gums.
AlcoholEspecially stout, beers and ales.
LactoseA few patients may have some degree of lactase deficiency. Whilst small amounts of milk for example in tea or yoghurt are often tolerated, an increase in the consumption of milk may cause diarrhoea. For more information on lactose intolerance see www​.eatwell.gov.uk
CaffeineExcessive intake of caffeine may loosen stool and thus increase faecal incontinence in some predisposed patients.
Vitamin and mineral supplementsExcessive doses of vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorus and/or calcium supplements may increase faecal incontinence. For more information on lactose intolerance, vitamin and mineral supplements see www​.eatwell.gov.uk
Olestra fat substituteCan cause loose stools.

From: APPENDIX K, FOOD/ DRINK WHICH MAY EXACERBATE FAECAL INCONTINENCE IN PATIENTS WHO PRESENT WITH LOOSE STOOLS OR RECTAL LOADING OF SOFT STOOL

Cover of Faecal Incontinence
Faecal Incontinence: The Management of Faecal Incontinence in Adults.
NICE Clinical Guidelines, No. 49.
National Collaborating Centre for Acute Care (UK).
Copyright © 2007, National Collaborating Centre for Acute Care.

Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of research or private study, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the publisher or, in the case of reprographic reproduction, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency in the UK. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside the terms stated here should be sent to the publisher at the UK address printed on this page.

The use of registered names, trademarks, etc. in this publication does not imply, even in the absence of a specific statement, that such names are exempt from the relevant laws and regulations and therefore for general use.

The rights of National Collaborating Centre for Acute Care to be identified as Author of this work have been asserted by them in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988.

PubMed Health. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.