Liquid Diet for Diverticulitis
Essentially, this is an inflammation of the diverticula, which in turn causes abnormal pouches formed by herniations of the intestinal mucosa and submucosa.
The cause of diverticulosis is thought to be a low-fiber diet.
Diverticulitis occurs when a small pouch breaks open, allowing bacteria or stool to enter the abdominal cavity and cause infection.
As a result, you may experience fever, chills, pain, tenderness, and possibly nausea or vomiting. These symptoms may last for several days while your body fights the infection.
After this time passes, you may feel better for a while until your next attack occurs.
Diverticulitis may cause you to feel sick to your stomach. If this happens, you may not want to eat much. It is okay to let your appetite guide you.
But it would help if you still had plenty of fluids and some nutrition so that your body could heal. You can get these from low-fiber foods and liquids.
Is a liquid diet good for diverticulitis?
Diverticulitis is a condition that affects the large intestine (colon). The colon is the last part of your digestive tract. It’s shaped like a big “C” and is about 5 feet long.
Diverticula are small bulges that may form in the lining of the lower part of the colon, where waste is stored before being passed through the anus as a stool.
These bulges can become inflamed or infected. This condition is known as diverticulitis.
If you’re a person with diverticulitis, your doctor may recommend using a liquid diet to help rest your digestive system and allow it to heal.
If you have acute diverticulitis, you may need to be hospitalized and receive intravenous (IV) fluids and antibiotics to treat your condition until it’s under control.
In most cases, however, diverticulitis can be treated at home with treatment from your health care provider and a liquid diet.
Liquids will help clear out your intestinal tract so it can heal faster. Your body also absorbs fluids better than solids during this time, which will help prevent dehydration.
Why is a Liquid Diet Good for Diverticulitis?
If you have diverticulitis, you may be wondering if a liquid diet can help.
Here are some of the reasons why a liquid diet may be suitable for diverticulitis:
It allows the intestines to heal
Diverticulitis occurs when small pouches in the intestinal wall (called diverticula) become inflamed. This condition can lead to pain, fever, nausea, vomiting, and constipation.
A liquid diet provides enough nutrients for healing without adding stress to the digestive system. Once you can eat solid foods again, you may want to follow a high-fiber diet to reduce the chances of developing another flare-up.
It reduces inflammation
Liquid diets are often used after surgeries that affect the digestive system or people with inflammatory diseases, like ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease.
In some cases, a low-fiber diet may also reduce inflammation in people with diverticulitis because less fiber means minor irritation of the colon lining.
It reduces stress on your colon
When you ingest solid foods, it takes longer to pass through your digestive system than if you were eating liquids.
Liquid diets give your colon a chance to rest and heal from the damage caused by diverticulitis.
Liquid diets are filled with nutrients
The best thing about liquid diets is that they can be very nutritious because they contain a lot of fruit and vegetables.
This means that you can still get all of your daily nutrition needs from drinking smoothies and soups made from healthy ingredients while allowing your body to recuperate at the same time.
Dos of a Liquid Diet Ideal for Diverticulitis
Once you’re ready to move past clear liquids, your doctor will likely suggest a low-fiber diet while your bowel heals.
You may want to stick with this type of diet until you’ve had at least two or three regular bowel movements. If you’re having a lot of diarrhea, talk to your doctor about ways to help control that.
While you’re recovering, here’s what to do.
- Eat bland foods low in fiber, including white rice and white bread or crackers, or cooked cereals like cream of wheat or rice cereals. You can also try mashed potatoes and noodles.
- Eat small meals more often than large ones throughout the day if that helps keep down nausea or abdominal pain.
Don’ts of the Diverticulitis Liquid Diet
Here is what not to do while on a liquid diet because of diverticulitis; here is what not to do.
- Drink soda, coffee, or other caffeinated drinks. They can make you feel jittery and nervous.
- Eat any solid food. Solid food can make your symptoms worse.
- Drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes. They can irritate your digestive system.
- Eat raw fruits and vegetables and whole grains during flare-ups.
When you have diverticulitis, you want to avoid placing any strain on your digestive system. A liquid diet is a way to give your colon a break while still giving your body sufficient nutrients.
However, certain foods should be avoided during this time because they may cause additional symptoms or make your condition worse. This article will help you do just that.
Printable Liquid Diet for Diverticulitis (PDF)
|1||2 cups of coffee or tea, with 2 tablespoons of non-dairy creamer; 1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; water||1 cup low-fat, low-fiber yogurt (no fruit) with 8 oz. apple juice||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; water||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; water|
|2||2 cups of coffee or tea, with 2 tablespoons of non-dairy creamer; 1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; water||Cream of wheat||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; 8 ounces of lemonade (made from powder); water||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; 8 ounces of lemonade (made from powder); water|
|3||2 cups of coffee or tea, with 2 tablespoons of non-dairy creamer; 1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; water||Beef-flavored bouillon cubes dissolved in water, tea or coffee||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; 8 ounces of lemonade (made from powder); water||1 cup of vegetable bouillon broth; 8 ounces of lemonade (from powder); water|
|4||1 cup of fortified cereal with skim milk||Plain gelatin (no fruit added)||1/2 cup of fruit juice|
1/4 cup of cottage cheese with canned peaches or nectarines (drained)
|Clear chicken, beef, vegetable, or turkey broth|
|5||4 ounces pineapple|
- 1 cup of apple juice
|strained lemonade and limeade||4 ounces of chicken broth|
- 1 slice of white toast with one teaspoon jelly
|ounces of broth
- ½ cup of cooked rice
|6||2 cups clear broth, coffee or tea||½ cup plain, nonfat yogurt with 2 Tbsp ground flaxseed||2 cups clear broth, coffee or tea with sugar substitute if desired||1 serving chicken soup|
|7||Sugar-free jello, broth, tea, or coffee||strained tomato juice||Chicken broth with bouillon, tea, or coffee||Chicken broth with bouillon, sugar-free jello, tea, or coffee|