Enteritis: what it is, causes, symptoms and treatment

 Enteritis: what it is, causes, symptoms and treatment

Lena Fisher

Enteritis is the name for inflammation of the intestines - to give you an idea, the organ is more than 7 meters long. "second brain" Its proper functioning is fundamental for the health not only of the body, but also of the emotions. However, some factors can cause problems such as enteritis, which can evolve into more serious diseases, like kidney failure. Below, learn all about the condition and how to avoid it.

See also: Habits that hinder intestinal health


"Viruses, bacteria, and protozoa (worms) can cause enteritis or gastroenteritis, which is inflammation of the stomach and intestines. There are also other reasons, such as the use of some medications and unhealthy diet," explains general practitioner and nephrologist Carlos Machado.

Although the above are the main factors, there are more situations and diseases responsible for enteritis. For example:

  • Food intolerances or allergies.
  • Alcohol and other substance abuse.
  • Diabetes.
  • Hormonal changes, such as hyperthyroidism.
  • Radiation therapy in cancer treatments, for example.
  • Autoimmune diseases, such as Crohn's disease.

What are the symptoms?

At first, the most common signs are diarrhea, vomiting, gas, weight loss, pain in the abdomen, and blood in the stool, "but some people feel none of these symptoms and only discover enteritis when they visit a doctor," adds the doctor.

How to find out about enteritis

First of all, go to a doctor, because every body reacts differently to illness. So the general practitioner or gastroenterologist will make an evaluation of your case. Then the professional will examine your lifestyle, history of illnesses, whether you are and how long you have had symptoms. Usually the tests requested may be:

  • CBC.
  • Serology for infectious agents.
  • Thyroid function.
  • Dosage of immunoglobins.
  • Biochemistry.
  • Endoscopy, if gastroenteritis is suspected.
  • CT or MRI scan.

Read more: Healthy snacks that are good for the intestines

What if the enteritis is not treated?

Whenever there is inflammation in the digestive tract, we lose the good ability to absorb nutrients for the body. "When a disease like enteritis develops, the kidneys suffer the most because they feel this nutritional deficiency. As a result, enteritis can lead to kidney and even heart failure if there is no correct control and diagnosis," warns Machado.


Treatment varies, as it depends on the cause. However, if the person is dehydrated or vomiting excessively, hydration will be the first part of the treatment, which can be intravenous (injection of serum) or oral.

According to Machado, the other step is to change the diet, i.e., to cut industrialized foods such as sweets, soft drinks, coffee, fatty foods, and alcoholic beverages: "The more the diet is rich in 'real food', there will be fewer chances of problems of this kind arising", he comments.

In contrast, drug treatment will be according to the cause of the enteritis So, if the inflammation is bacterial, antibiotics are needed to stop the contamination. Probiotics However, if there are other diseases, they must be treated in conjunction with the enteritis.

Tips to prevent enteritis

We already know that healthy eating can prevent enteritis and other diseases. But what else can we do to prevent the problem? Here are some suggestions to protect yourself:

Do not self-medicate

Many people take medicine on their own when they feel discomfort. self-medication Whenever you feel unwell, ask your doctor about the best way to treat it.

Take care of your hygiene

Always washing your hands is basic, as it prevents unwanted contamination. But if you are in the habit of cooking, sanitize your household utensils after preparing a meal. Another tip is to change your cleaning sponges frequently, and even use hot water for heavy washing.

Read more: Eating avocados every day is good for the intestines

Wash food well

Viral or bacterial enteritis can be caused by food poisoning, so you can't be too careful. Hygienize fruits, vegetables and cook raw food, such as beef, chicken, pork, fish and eggs. Raw fish and seafood, common in Japanese cuisine, should be eaten with care. Go to reliable restaurants and buy only quality products.

Visit your doctor frequently

It is common to stay too long without having checkups, especially when we are feeling well. Machado explains that this is one of the main mistakes, because it prevents an effective treatment. The sooner the enteritis or any other problem is diagnosed, the better.

Source: Carlos Machado He is a general practitioner, a specialist in preventive medicine, and a nephrologist.

Lena Fisher

Lena Fisher is a wellness enthusiast, certified nutritionist, and author of the popular health and well-being blog. With over a decade of experience in the field of nutrition and health coaching, Lena has dedicated her career to helping people achieve their optimal health and live their best life possible. Her passion for wellness has led her to explore various approaches to achieving overall health, including diet, exercise, and mindfulness practices. Lena's blog is a culmination of her years of research, experience, and personal journey towards finding balance and well-being. Her mission is to inspire and empower others to make positive changes in their lives and embrace a healthy lifestyle. When she's not writing or coaching clients, you can find Lena practicing yoga, hiking the trails, or experimenting with new healthy recipes in the kitchen.