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Hydration with an Ostomy

Laura Cox
Ostomy Lifestyle Specialist | Shield HealthCare
06/17/15  5:23 PM PST
Hydration with an Ostomy

Hydration with an ostomy can be difficult for some people. Here are some fluids, foods and tips that help you stay hydrated. If hydration is a persistent problem for you, contact your doctor.


Drink fluids with electrolytes like sodium and potassium. It’s best to drink electrolyte beverages that are also low in sugar content.

  • Coconut Water
  • V8 or other vegetable juices
  • Gatorade (G2 has less sugar) or other low sugar sports drinks
  • Pedialyte
  • Homemade oral rehydration solutions


Eat foods that have high water content, this makes absorption more efficient – remember to avoid foods that do not work for you, or chew well when foods have skins/seeds/are difficult to fully digest.

  • Watermelon
  • Tomatoes
  • Apples/applesauce
  • Cucumbers
  • Yogurt/pudding
  • Smoothies
  • Jell-O

Also eat foods that are not high in water content, but still assist in absorption and slowing down transit time.

  • Potatoes
  • Bananas
  • Bread
  • Crackers
  • Pretzels

Tips for Hydration with an Ostomy

  • Always carry a water bottle with you and make sure you refill it whenever it is empty.
  • Sip, don’t chug! Chugging fluid will make fluid go through your system too fast to hydrate properly.
  • Eat before drinking. This helps absorb fluids.
  • Mix up what you’re drinking. You’re more likely to drink things you aren’t bored of and enjoy.
    • Infuse water with fruits.
    • Drink smoothies for an added nutritional bonus.
  • Also, if you only drink water you may need to add fluids with more electrolytes.
  • Ask your doctor about taking Imodium or Metamucil

Recipes for DIY rehydration solutions

Your rehydration solution should contain higher levels of carbohydrates, sodium, potassium and other electrolytes. Here are some recipes for a good rehydration solution.

1 ½ cups of water

1 ½ cups of Gatorade

¾ teaspoon salt


6 oz. Pedialyte (unflavored)

2 oz. chicken broth


4 cups of coconut water or water (or a mix of both)

1 cup freshly juiced/squeezed orange juice

1/2 cup of freshly juiced/squeezed lemon juice

6 – 8 tablespoons of sweetener (raw honey is best)

1/4 teaspoon unrefined salt


32 oz. water 1 orange or cucumber sliced (both with peel)

1 lemon sliced (with peel)

1/4 tsp. Himalayan sea salt or other unrefined sea salt, or Trace Mineral Drops

combine in a glass water bottle, shake and cool in the refrigerator

For more information, see related ostomy nutrition articles and resources here:

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1 Comment

  1. Falguni Sheth
    Posted May 15, 2017 at 12:49 am PST

    Superbly informative website

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