My COVID Story: Corrine

Her COVID-19 symptoms forced changes in choices of food and drink I’m Corrine, an administrative assistant for a small company […]

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Her COVID-19 symptoms forced changes in choices of food and drink

I’m Corrine, an administrative assistant for a small company in the Mankato area. My COVID-19 story is not very pleasant. But it needs to be told. 

I live with mild symptoms of multiple sclerosis or MS. I was diagnosed when I was in my early 30s. My symptoms are managed with medication. I try to get enough exercise and take other steps to stay healthy. 

Because I was not considered to be at highest risk, I didn’t get vaccinated in the initial months of the pandemic. I made and wore my masks, cleaned everything and was careful. I did most of my work from home. (My boss is great, BTW!)  I still came down with a very bad case of COVID-19 during the first year of the pandemic. It was two weeks of feeling as if a bad case of flu had hit me. Then my illness manifested into something else. 

My worst and most embarrassing health issue related to COVID-19 was several weeks of intermittent diarrhea. The cramps were some of the most painful I have ever had. The diarrhea brought on bloating, nausea and vomiting. 

I had to use adult diapers for much of that time. 

Drugs I took to treat my COVID-19 may have made my diarrhea worse. The stress of being sick didn’t help. 

The biggest worry for me was dehydration, due to my compromised immune system. I drank so much water and juice, it wasn’t even funny. I was all but living in our home’s basement bathroom. 

I’d never been one to drink sports drinks but those became part of my daily fluid intake. Gatorade became my friend.  Sports drinks that contain electrolytes helped me maintain the balance of fluids in my body.  Have you heard of the BRAT diet? My doctor had me try that, to make stools more solid and counter the effects of the diarrhea. The acronym stands for (B) bananas, white (r) rice, (a) applesauce and (t) toast. While none of these are my favorite foods, eating them did help me a lot. 

The very hardest thing was to avoid caffeine and alcohol. I like morning coffee, and sometimes have a glass of wine with dinner.  What was the hardest was to give up chocolate, green tea, sodas and foods that can cause gas. That was difficult as my family and I like a lot of vegetables. And I love chocolate. 

Over-the-counter medications only worked for me for a time. The diarrhea finally tapered off and I was able to resume normal life again. 

Friends said, at least you lost weight. I dropped about 10 pounds when I was so sick. But I don’t recommend it as a weight loss measure. 

My advice to others? Even if something is embarrassing, talk to your doctor and the staff and your clinic. Find out what you should do and follow those recommendations. If something doesn’t work, ask for other ideas. 

Many good resources are online to help people who developer diarrhea while battling COVID-19. One comprehensive resource is the website. Learn more at

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  • "Stay safe, Minnesota. Take steps to protect yourself, & others from the COVID-19 virus."

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