Diets for Diverticulitis

Diverticulitis is an inflammation of pockets called diverticula that have formed in the wall of the intestines. During an inflammation, a low-volume diet is recommended. Following a diet that is low in fiber while avoiding certain foods is key to handling this difficult and often painful health problem.

  1. Flare-up diet

    • During a flare-up of diverticulitis it is important that a low volume of food passes through the bowel so that the inflammation can heal. Cut back on fiber during this time. No more than 10 grams of fiber per day is best.

      Eat carbohydrates such as white bread and white rice. Soda crackers or the cereal Cream of Wheat are also good choices.

      For fruits, enjoy applesauce, watermelon, peaches or grapes. Fruit juices are a an excellent low-fiber way to obtain nutrients. Be sure to avoid prune juice.

      Vegetables in the diet are important and can be obtained by drinking vegetable juices. Other choices include green beans, celery, carrots and cucumbers. Potatoes are fine as long as the skins are removed.

      Meat is a solid source of protein and should not be avoided. Just make sure that the meat is tender and well cooked. Be sure to eat plenty of fish and eggs as well.

    What to avoid

    • Foods that are high in fiber should be avoided during a flare-up of diverticulitis. Stay away from any foods that contain whole grains. Also avoid dried fruits, nuts and seeds. Vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and brussel sprouts can be hard on the digestive system and should be avoided. While keeping protein in the diet is important, stay away from beans and lentils.

    Prevention diet

    • Between flare-ups, a diet high in fiber will help to keep diverticulitis under control. Whole grains are important and include oatmeal, whole grain breads and bran. Fresh fruits are also an excellent source of fiber. In addition to fiber, be sure to drink plenty of water.

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