Expired Lemon Juice and Diarrhea

freshly squeezed lemon juice in small bowl
Expired lemon juice can cause food poisoning. (Image: rez-art/iStock/Getty Images)

If you drink expired lemon juice and develop diarrhea, you might have food poisoning. Food poisoning occurs when you ingest a food or beverage that is contaminated. Lemon juice is used as a common ingredient in many dishes and desserts, and if you use expired lemon juice in cooking you can contaminate the entire meal. Call your doctor and make an appointment to determine the exact cause of the diarrhea. Diarrhea from food poisoning is primarily treated with a modified diet and preventing dehydration through increasing your liquid intake.

Background

If the expired lemon juice contains any bacteria, viruses or toxins from going sour, you will become sick from food poisoning. After you ingest the expired lemon juice you will develop symptoms within a few hours to two days. The infectious organism that is in the lemon juice will attack the lining of your digestive system and cause inflammation and infection to occur. Food poisoning doesn’t commonly cause medical complications, unless you are very young, elderly or suffer from an autoimmune disorder.

Symptoms

Diarrhea is one of the primary symptoms of food poisoning, but other symptoms will develop as well. You develop abdominal pain, cramping, fever, chills, weakness in your body, nausea, headache and vomiting. If you notice blood in your diarrhea or vomit, you need to call your doctor right away. Some bacteria can take a few days to affect your digestive system, preventing symptoms from occurring right away. You should see a doctor if you’re vomiting for more than two days, have diarrhea for more than three days, have a body temperature over 101.5 degrees F or believe you’re dehydrated.

Treatment

The most effective treatment for diarrhea caused by drinking expired lemon juice is to modify your diet and drink more fluids. Eat small amounts of bland foods that will promote bulk in your stools. Eat bananas, rice, applesauce, toast, cooked carrots, skinless chicken and boiled potatoes. Yogurt contains helpful bacteria that can assist your body in fighting off the infectious organism. Drink more clear liquids to prevent dehydration. Avoid caffeinated beverages and alcohol because these substances will deplete your body of water.

Complication

Dehydration is the main complications from diarrhea. If you cannot keep any liquid in your stomach, call your doctor. Dehydration is a serious medical condition that could lead to death if not properly treated. Signs of dehydration include dry skin, dry mouth, pale skin and light-headedness.

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