Alcohol and Ileostomy: Experiences and Tips?


Hey all!

I'm 6 weeks out from temp Ileostomy (laparoscopic) surgery and feel great. I've been given the green light from my surgeon to hit the gym and eat whatever I want.

I've been eating pretty unhealthy without fruits and veggies in my life. Mainly burgers and fries, tacos, tons of chips, cookies, etc. Haha. It will be nice to get some green back in my diet.

I'm curious. The surgeon also said I can have alcoholic drinks. (Beer is my drink of choice pre-surgery) I know everyone is different, but I've never experienced dehydration or liquid output even if I don't drink a lot of water and eat like crap. Not really sure why.

I'm definitely going to try beer and see what happens, but I'm curious if anyone on here has similar plumbing??? Basically, I feel like I can eat and drink whatever and my output stays pretty consistent (thick). I even eat very large meals without issue.

I also heard you can get more hungover? I saw a trick to eat marshmallow before you drink to create a temp blockage so it doesn't fly through you??? Thoughts???

How else will you know your limits if you don't push them?


So my girlfriends wanted to see how I'd do with my first drink post colectomy and ileostomy. Cayman Jack margarita glass bottles sooo good. I drank it really slow because I didn't know how I'd respond, and I made sure I was eating foods with it. I didn't want to give them any satisfaction of thinking I was a lightweight now, lol. When I have an alcoholic drink, I put some Buoy drops in it and make sure I'm drinking water too. White wines I've been okay with (I don't do reds because of migraines). Martinis I have to be more careful with; one was okay, two was not, lol. I don't drink every day, more social, or if my kids have really driven me crazy that day and I need to chill.

I'm also another one that can't stand beer, so I can't speak for that in particular.

Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate

Why Join MeetAnOstoMate?

First off, this is a pretty cool site with 33,450 members. Get inside and you will see.

It's not all about ostomy. Everything is being discussed.

Many come here for advice or to give advice 🗣, others have found good friends 🤗, and there are also those who have found love 💓. Most of all, people are honest and truly care.

Privacy is very important - the website has many features that are only visible to members.

Create an account and you will be amazed.


No idea on the alcohol part but I'd start slow and see how you react. Beer may cause lots of gas.

Reply to CrappyColon

From Dorothy Parker, part of The Algonquin Round Table in the Thirties:

"I do enjoy a Martini; Two at the very most. With Three I'm under the table; With Four I'm under the host."


Past Member

I certainly don't need as much alcohol to get the "warm and fuzzies" as I used to pre-surgery, one or two G T's will do the trick!

Have only been "ripped to the tits"* a few times since surgery (not a regular binge-drinker just sometimes one needs to be comfortably numb), but didn't really have a hangover, just a bit headachey the next day. I'd eat something stodgy before going out because just drinking on its own the bag does fill pretty quickly (although that makes it easier to empty, just don't get too pissed!) and drink plenty of water before hitting the sack.

Can't stand beer, but can imagine that it would be gas inducing. Still early days for you so anything in moderation will probably be OK.


*Cary Grant when commenting on Princess Grace of Monaco at a party...."Her Serene Royal Highness was ripped to the tits"!

Living with Your Ostomy | Hollister
Reply to Bryce

This made me laugh :)

Reply to Anonymous

G T's have been a new favorite of mine post colectomy. Not sure why I like it now. I'm still trying to figure out what I like anymore half or more of the time. Also, when it's non-alcohol time - which is a lot of the day when you have kids and I'm the on-call friend for when my friend goes into labor... so until her baby comes if I have anything it's just one. I really like club soda with fresh lime which is something I couldn't stand drinking before, maybe it's the sodium? Maybe the lime? Maybe the combo?

Reply to Anonymous

Thanks for your response. I'm going to give beer a whirl and see how it goes. I've heard some people are not affected at all by the gas so I'm crossing my fingers that's me. Otherwise, I guess I'll switch to sippin' on some scotch or whiskey. Also, something I enjoy. Just can't beat an ice-cold pint on a hot day.


I have had a permanent ileostomy for 8 years now. Beer always caused extreme gas (due to the carbonation, same reason I don't drink anything carbonated). Recently I've become a bourbon on the rocks guy, especially honey bourbon. No issues but I rarely have over a double shot. The key I've learned is moderation in everything.


Gas will result in bag balloonification (I made that word up). Hmmm, for me it depends on how much stoma singing I want. Sometimes a burp in the stoma is silent and as it balloons you can retreat to the nearest stall and release the air and collapse the bag. Other times it is downright vulgar and some might wonder what the hell was that noise coming from your belly button! The only difference from the "old days" of farting would be, there is no foul odor wafting around your friends making them flee! In my lifetime I have been amazed by people, I will not name names here (usually male drinkers) who actually believe loud obnoxious farting is funny - LOL NOT!!! JB

ron in mich

Hi Danno, before I had resection surgery, I used to drink beer. Now that I have a better stoma, beer goes right through me so I've switched to Captain and Coke. But a cold beer on a hot summer day still goes good.

Reply to ron in mich

Thanks for your response. It's becoming more likely that I'll be switching to the hard stuff.

Reply to Danno

I haven't noticed any issue with drinking beer but I drink the good beer (craft breweries). I try to drink lots of water too.

Bob 48

Everyone is different, if you like beer I'd say give it a try. I've had my current ileostomy for around 6 months now and love a good beer. After 3 months or so post-surgery, I had a few at home to see how it reacted. I drink a beer slowly, at least compared to my friends I drink beer with, about 1 an hour, and it was fine, maybe a bit more gas than usual but hardly noticeable. I've been dealing with UC and then a poorly functioning J-pouch, so knowing where a bathroom or even my truck with supplies and some privacy is nothing new to me and very helpful. I also mix some Metamucil powder to drink before I consume beer, and that helps me to keep my output thick, at least for a while.


Yes, I have to agree with trying different beers. I know that I have found a nice dark beer that doesn't give me gas, but most have. I am a big Corona beer fan with grenadine, my favorite. Then, now with my uncle, we found that Schiltz beer and Fireball make a nice cinnamon beer. Captain Morgan and Coke, another favorite. Tuaca, well shaken, it has to be really cold, tastes like butterscotch. Moonshine and root beer, we call it bootbeer. Baileys and coffee. Then, now since most of my uncle's friends are passing away, I am the nephew that goes hunting and drinking with him. So now I got him trying infusion drinks. So far, my uncle has been mixing different coffee syrups with Povo vodka. And yes, with it all, when Hecker wants to be an ass and talking shit, I have to respond like everyone does. But that is my list of goodies. Enjoy the things that you can.



I just celebrated my 3 yr "Stomaversary" (colon removed, Ken butt etc). Beer occasionally gives me gas. Not so much discomfort, just a little noisier. Advice I was given was to go 1 glass of water for 2 drinks. Sometimes more liquid discharge than normal. It goes back to normal shortly after. Eating pretzels with your beer may help. If I know I'm going to be having a drink, I'll take some Liquid IV powder before I go. I'm a believer in the "Anything (legal) is alright in moderation". With St. Paddy's coming, try a Guinness. Lower alcohol, fewer calories, and less gas than "normal" beer. Some Irish whiskey may be in order too.


Shark Fan


Update: I learned today that the average person drinks 9 alcoholic beverages a week.

I also learned that I am above average.

Reply to Justbreathe

I'll let you borrow my 9.


I don't like beer but I can't imagine beer would be any worse for gas than soda. Someone introduced me to (I think) grasshopper - creme de menthe and milk. I had several. Too much milk for my ostomy and intestine to handle!


I eat pretty much everything and haven't had an issue so far. If you are eating greens or anything that poses a blockage issue, corn, nuts, tomatoes, fruit with peelings, mushrooms, I just chew them a lot more. I remember just a day after surgery (ileostomy) I swallowed my chewing gum!! I told the nurse and she said it's ok! Phew! Remember Mom said it will make your insides stick together!!!!


I was a pretty regular Makers on the rocks and craft beer girl. Then after my first surgery, I lost the craving for alcohol. It's been ten months since I have had a drink!

I will admit that going back to work made me want to have a drink pretty bad, so I bought Athletic Brewing NA Beer - Upside Dawn. It actually tastes like the beers I love AND only 45 calories to boot.

I've heard there's some NA whiskey out there too, so I'm gonna look into that one of these days too.

At this point, it's been long enough that I'm letting the booze go for good. There's no downside to it for sure.

Reply to Justbreathe

That's really the average? I guess I would be a lightweight then

Reply to Danno

Hi, I had surgery on May 31st. I drink a beer a day and so far so good. Without gas. Also, I drink a glass of wine at lunchtime and it's been great for me.

Reply to Bryce

I'm talking about beer. Want beer drinkers. Don't drink spirits. Should have explained better. I've started chemotherapy with the stoma. As I drank, I sipped water and had a packet of marshmallows. Not a problem, but you were more.