Does spinach cause diarrhea?

In this brief article, we will answer the question: Does spinach cause diarrhea and three reasons why spinach causes diarrhea.

Can you get diarrhea from eating spinach?

You can get diarrhea from eating too much spinach. This is because spinach is rich in fiber and other nutrients, especially iron. When consumed in excess, our body is not able to absorb plant-based iron with excess fiber which results in diarrhea.

Spinach is a leafy vegetable which is consumed all over the world for its nutritional benefits. It is one of the healthiest diets which has potassium, magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin C, Vitamin b6 and b9, folic acid, calcium and carotenoids.

Despite having many nutritional benefits spinach can cause food poisoning and diarrhea in many people. Sometimes it might be the allergy to spinach or some ingredient in it but spinach also had many microbes in it. These microbes when enter the gastrointestinal tract disturbs the system and causes infections.

Why Spinach cause diarrhea?

Spinach is an iron rich diet and is consumed in a vast amount, when cooked it decreases inside and many people eat it raw in salads. When consuming raw spinach, it is better to wash it thoroughly with warm water.

Food poisoning due to spinach:

Food poisoning is a very common disease all over the world and results due to bacteria or viruses. In food poisoning the digestive systems get disturbed by microbes and result in diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and weaknesses. If left untreated it might also cause death.

According to the Centre for disease control and prevention most of the cases of foodborne illnesses are due to leafy vegetables. Among these leafy vegetables spinach is characterized by norovirus or presence of E. coli bacteria

If you consume raw spinach the presence of virus and E. coli will result in food poisoning. This type of food poisoning lasts for three days and the patient suffers from pain, fatigue, weakness, nausea and vomiting. To avoid this, it is better to cook spinach properly before eating it

Diarrhea due to fiber in spinach:

Spinach is a green leafy vegetable and is rich in fiber and other nutrients. Fiber is good for our health and is advised to consume in excess amounts when losing weight. Spinach has an insoluble fiber that is why it is used in salads and as a side dish.

Insoluble fibers when consumed in bulk prompts the stool to pass quickly through the digestive system. Spinach has fiber in excess, so consuming too much spinach causes food to pass through quickly through the digestive system. It induces the symptoms like bloating, gas, abdominal pain, and cramps

The high intake of fiber may result in sudden weight loss and uncomfortable symptoms. That does not mean you have to stop eating spinach completely but don’t consume it daily or in excess. Keep a balanced diet and maintain your diet to avoid excessive or too less intake.

Diarrhea due to spinach allergy:

Many people are allergic to spinach and don’t know about it. If you develop diarrhea right after eating spinach you may be allergic to spinach, a food combination or any specific ingredient in the recipe. Food allergies are usually inborn but you may develop it at any age or any time in your life

Allergy due to spinach is a common cause behind spinach induced diarrhea. To identify the allergy, you need to consult a doctor and run some tests. Some of the common symptoms of spinach allergy include Stomach cramps, vomiting, shortness of breath, Hives, sneezing, dry cough, dizziness, diarrhea and itching in the mouth.

If you have spinach intolerance only a small amount of allergens can cause the symptoms to show. It is better to not eat spinach at all if you have spinach intolerance or allergy to spinach.

Other FAQs about Spinach which you may be interested in.

How to store spinach long-term?

How much does 1 cup of spinach weigh?

Ways to avoid Spinach cause diarrhea:

  • If you have allergy it is best to avoid eating spinach or spinach based products
  • If you want to eat spinach raw the best way to avoid intoxication is by washing it thoroughly
  • Cooking spinach also reduces all the chances of developing diarrhea or other symptoms
  • It is better to avoid eating anything in excess or on daily basis

Suitable spinach replacement:

Spinach is a healthy product and is necessary to consume if you don’t have an allergy. If you are allergic to spinach or need to add something else in your recipe, some of the suitable replacements for spinach are:

  • Dandelion greens
  • Swiss chard
  • Kale
  • Beet greens
  • Arugula
  • Mustard greens
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Broccoli

These vegetables are easy to consume and you can consume them raw or cook them. In case of spinach it is better to cook as it becomes easily digestible. You can sauté the vegetable, steam it or cook it in a pan depending on your taste.


In this brief article, we have answered the question Does spinach cause diarrhea and  three reasons why spinach causes diarrhea.