The Diverticulitis Diva’s Guide to Food

Greetings friends! This is my own personal food journal of what foods are great for different times during diverticulitis flare ups and what foods to introduce or make predominant in your daily eating once you are past a flare up. I also will list a broad list of foods that are recommended not to partake in. However, once you are willing to see what you body will tolerate after a flare up, you can start introducing 1 food at a time over the span of a week to see if you will have a reaction, or if this can be a staple in your diet again. Here we go!

During an attack:

* Broth- chicken, vegetable, beef- stock or bouillon

*Clear pop

*Fruit juice with NO pulp

* Ice chips

*Popsicles with NO fruit or pulp

*Water- and lots of it! 6-8 glasses a day if you can manage it

*Coffee or tea with NO cream

Coming out of a diverticulitis attack:

*You may have all of the above plus…

*Canned fruits [not ones with seeds, and some times pineapple is a problem]

*Desserts with NO seeds or nuts

*Eggs

*Enriched white bread

*Fruit juice with NO pulp

*Low fiber ceral

*Yogurt with NO fruit or nuts

*Cheese with NO fruit or nuts

*Smooth peanut butter

*Tender meat, poultry, fish

*White rice

*Plain pasta, noodles, macaroni

*Bananas [unless you have a problem with these]

*Well cooked vegetables without skins or seeds

Follow this for 1-4 weeks depending on the issues you are having. Try to eat several tiny meals no larger than half of a sandwich throughout the day. And keep drinking plenty of fluids!!!

Recovery Foods after a Flare Up:

*You may have all the above items from the first 2 sections PLUS the high fiber foods below…

*Beans/ Legumes [keep in mind that this is a high fiber food, but that lots of beans and legumes have seeds or skins that may bother you. Be cautious with this one!!}

*Bran, whole wheat bread

*Whole grain cereal

* Brown or wild rice

*Fruit: apples {you may want to avoid the skins], bananas, pears [again be mindful of the skins]

*Vegetables: Broccoli [this is gaseous and will promote bloat], carrots, squash, potatoes [mindful of skins], sweet potatoes [mindful of skins], peas, spinach

*Whole wheat pasta

*Pasta with added fiber

*Spinach pasta

Trigger Foods to be Avoided:

This is a broad list of items to avoid. You know your body, and these may only be things to avoid for you during flare ups, but from my own research this is a list complied of all things harmful for diverticulitis.

*Popcorn

*Nuts

*Seeds

*Corn

*Raw fruits with skins or membrane

*Raw vegetables with skins or membrane

*Potato skins

*Tomatoes

*Zucchini

*Cucumbers/ pickles [this does NOT include the English cucumbers I have shown before because they are seedless]

*Strawberries

*Raspberries, blackberries, mulberries

*Dried fruits including raisins

*Beans with skins

*Beets

*Carrots [this is on here simply if it is too hard for you to digest in its raw form]

* Broccoli [gaseous]

*Squash [skin and seeds]

*Cauliflower [gaseous]

*Brussel sprouts [gaseous]

*Cabbage [gaseous]

*Kale

*Swiss Chard

*Whole grain breads/ cereals

*Bran

*Oats

*Whole wheat pasta

*Brown/ wild rice

*Bagels

*Fried foods

*Red meats

*Foods high in fat

*Processed foods

*White flour

*Chili peppers

*Pumpkin

*Caraway

*Cream sauces

*Pizza

*Spicy foods

*Coffee/ caffeine

*Pop

Ok, I know what you are thinking after reviewing the list of the things to avoid, because some of it blatantly contradicts the things listed above that are allowed at one juncture or another. So let me break this down for you a little better.

First, once you come off the liquid diet the idea is to start off slow with mild and low fiber foods to gently transition your digestive system. The reason for this is because whether you have been experiencing nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation during your flare up, your body is rebuilding. It needs time to heal and to allow the inflammation in your colon and intestines to go down. If you hop right back into the usual foods you might set that ticking time bomb off again and have to work though the whole ordeal all over again. You also don’t want to put any more stress on your bowels or cause a bigger problem.

Second, once you are able to transition into a high fiber diet take into consideration some foods, while very high in fiber, may have a trick up their sleeve and cause more harm than good. This is why you will see some of the foods listed on the Trigger section as ones also listed above as ones recommended to add  in to your diet. You want to increase your fiber slowly, as once again, you do not want to shock your system. So start by incorporating the things you know, or you think will be beneficial but will do no harm. For example green foods are typically high in fiber. As you will see both broccoli and spinach are recommeded to be eaten to increase fiber in your diet, however, broccoli is ALSO listed as a TRIGGER FOOD!!! Why? Well, broccoli is one of those types of vegetables that will promote stomach bloat and gas. Both of which do not do well on a fragile digestive system. So perhaps incorporate more spinach at first, the gradually build up to adding broccoli in and see how you feel. Remember, you have to play it safe before you can experiment with foods that you either need or once loved. A high fiber diet along with increased fluids, pro and prebiotics, herbs, exercise, and eating foods with live and active cultures not only boost your immune system and better your overall health, it also staves off future diverticulitis attacks! This is also a great diet to follow if you are having any type of acid related issues, digestive health problems, or other types of indigestion. If you notice this type of diet can easily be conformed to a vegetarian diet as well. Thanks for reading and happy eating!

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