Low Fat Bland Diet – Overview
Suppose you need to correct an inflammatory condition in your gastrointestinal system, or you’re preparing for a digestive tract checkup, or you need to follow a specific diet to help lessen irritation and discomfort.
As per the U.S NLM (National Library of Medicine), the bland diet is a lot like it sounds; it’s a diet that emphasizes cooked, soft, non-spicy, easily digestible low-fiber foods that are gentle on the gastrointestinal tract.
A physician may recommend a bland diet if you have GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), gastrointestinal problems, or peptic ulcers.
Also, if you experience a sudden onset of diarrhea and vomiting, you might need to be on a bland diet for a short time.
The bland diet is easy on the digestive system, and it removes foods that can aggravate the gut.
As per the MSKCC (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center), this can help alleviate digestive symptoms such as acid reflux, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and nausea.
All these symptoms necessitate that you eat easy-to-digest foods if you’re recovering.
When Is the Bland Diet Useful?
The bland diet should only be adopted for treating the symptoms of an underlying medical condition and should last the shortest time possible.
Some of the common reasons why a physician can recommend the bland diet include:
- Bacterial food poisoning: You can adopt a bland diet for this condition and gradually return to your normal diet after two to three days.
- Dyspepsia: If you have stomach problems such as belching, discomfort, and swelling, the bland diet might come in handy.
- Gastroenteritis (infectious diarrhea): If you have this condition, it’s best to be on a bland diet because your body might reject other stronger foods.
- Gastrointestinal bowel infection: A physician might recommend adopting the bland diet during flashes or severe cases of Crohn’s irritable bowel syndrome, diverticulitis, inflammatory bowel disease, or ulcerative colitis.
- NVP (Nausea and vomiting of pregnancy): also known as morning sickness or hyperemesis gravidarum, can cause a physician to recommend a bland diet.
- Post-gastric surgery: Doctors often recommend the bland diet to persons who have undergone gastric surgery to boost their diet before they resume normal diets.
The Bland diet is somewhat controversial concerning diarrhea because physicians recommend that patients maintain a normal diet to ensure proper nourishment.
However, due to nausea, stomach upsets, and even vomiting that accompanies diarrhea, the bland diet might be the ideal regimen because it comprises easily digestible foods.
Foods to Eat If You’re On the Bland Diet
Generally, foods you consume when on a bland diet don’t have to be plain or tasteless.
However, you’ll find that there are a couple of foods that are recommended for the bland diet that is quite tasty. Some of the foods recommended for the bland diet include:
- Dairy: Cottage cheese, low-fat milk, plain yogurt.
- Desserts: Cookies, ice milk, honey, Jell-O, pound cake, peppermint custard, plain or flavored gelatin, sponge cake, pudding, and tapioca.
- Drinks: Decaffeinated carbonated drinks and tea, sports drinks, juice, and water.
- Fats: Butter, canola oil, margarine, mayo, mild salad dressing, and olive oil.
- Fruits: Applesauce, bananas, and fruit juices (avoid citrus juices).
- Grains: Cream of wheat, oatmeal, rice, and foods made using fortified flour such as crackers, English muffins, melba toast, pasta, rolls, and tortillas.
- Meats: Well-cooked meat including chicken, fish, lamb, pork, turkey, and veal.
- Other Proteins: Creamy peanut butter, eggs, and tofu (soy milk curd).
- Spices: Allspice, cinnamon, mustard, paprika, and thyme.
- Vegetables: Creamed, baked, boiled, or mashed potatoes or yams with skins.
Foods to Avoid If You’re On the Bland Diet
- Dairy: Chocolate or cocoa-flavored milk, fatty dairy such as whipping cream.
- Desserts: Any dessert with chocolate, cocoa, or spices should be avoided.
- Drinks: Alcohol, caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee, caffeinated, carbonated drinks, caffeinated tea, and cocoa-flavored drinks.
- Fats: Strong salad dressings.
- Fruits: Berries, citrus fruits, dried fruits, and raw fruits.
- Grains: Brown rice, wild rice, and whole grains.
- Meats: Hot dogs, fried meat, processed meat, sausages, and seasoned or spiced meat.
- Other Proteins: Fried eggs or fried nuts.
- Spices: Black pepper, chili powder, garlic, nutmeg, salsa, and any other strong seasoning
- Vegetables: Fried potatoes, mild or hot peppers, and raw vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and onions.
Sample Bland Menu
- Breakfast: Apple juice and non-fat scrambled eggs
- Snack: Sponge cake
- Lunch: Steamed carrots with butter
- Dinner: Baked chicken
- Breakfast: Oatmeal with canned fruit
- Snack: Plain crackers
- Lunch: Grilled chicken breast
- Dinner: White rice and steamed asparagus
- Breakfast: Herbal tea and poached eggs
- Snack: Plain rice cakes
- Lunch: Tuna Sandwich
- Dinner: Broiled steak and mashed potatoes
Bland Diet Tips
- Avoid eating two hours before retiring to bed.
- Eat small portions more regularly throughout the day.
- If something upsets your stomach stop eating it: guts are different.
- Minimize or avoid dairy products entirely.
- No smoking.
- Take your drinks slowly.
Safety Measures When On the Bland Diet
The bland diet is only endorsed for short-term healing. Once you’ve recuperated, you need to introduce more fiber into your diet. Fiber is vital for things such as
- Balancing blood sugar
- Lowering LDL cholesterol
- Nurturing stomach bacteria
- Weight management
Generally, the bland diet is considered harmless however it could result in constipation because its devoid of fiber which is beneficial to the body. As a result, following the bland diet for too long can cause an imbalance of healthy stomach bacteria.
To sum it all up, the bland diet is ideal if you have a messed-up gastrointestinal system that needs time to heal.
As a result, foods in this diet should be easy to digest and unlikely to cause additional discomfort.
If symptoms persist, talk to a doctor and find out what you should eat, they may even recommend acid blockers and antacids to supplement your bland regimen.
|Food Group||Foods to Include||Foods to Avoid|
|Dairy||Cottage cheese, low-fat milk, plain yogurt.||Chocolate or cocoa-flavored milk, fatty dairy such as whipping cream.|
|Desserts||Cookies, ice milk, honey, Jell-O, pound cake, peppermint custard, plain or flavored gelatin, sponge cake, pudding, and tapioca.||Any dessert with chocolate, cocoa, or spices should be avoided.|
|Drinks||Decaffeinated carbonated drinks and tea, sports drinks, juice, and water.||Alcohol, caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee, caffeinated, carbonated drinks, caffeinated tea.|
|Fats||Butter, canola oil, margarine, mayo, mild salad dressing, and olive oil.||Strong salad dressings.|
|Fruits||Applesauce, bananas, and fruit juices (avoid citrus juices).||Berries, citrus fruits, dried fruits, and raw fruits.|
|Grains||Cream of wheat, oatmeal, rice, and foods made using fortified flour such as crackers, English muffins, melba toast, pasta, rolls, and tortillas.||Brown rice, wild rice, and whole grains.|
|Meats||Well-cooked meat including chicken, fish, lamb, pork, turkey, and veal.||Hot dogs, fried meat, processed meat, sausages, and seasoned or spiced meat.|
|Other Proteins||Creamy peanut butter, eggs, and tofu (soy milk curd).||Fried eggs or fried nuts.|
|Spices||Allspice, cinnamon, mustard, paprika, and thyme.||Black pepper, chili powder, garlic, nutmeg, salsa, and any other strong seasoning|
|Vegetables||Creamed, baked, boiled, or mashed potatoes or yams with skins.||Fried potatoes, mild or hot peppers, and raw vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and onions.|