Diverticulitis-Disease, Symptoms And Diet
There are many ailments that you get when you age and one such is diverticulitis. The condition begins as little bulging pouches in the large intestine’s lining. The bulging pouches are called diverticula and the condition is termed as diverticulosis. It when the pouches get infected or inflamed, it leads to a painful condition called diverculitis. Along with pain in the abdomen, people with diverticulitis experience vomiting, nausea, bloating, constipation or diarrhea and fever.
According to health experts, a low fibre diet results in the conditions diverticulosis and diverticulitis. This can probably be the reason why those living in Asia and Africa have lower incidence of this condition. Asians and Africans have a diet higher in fibre when compared to those living in the Western countries.
Diverticulosis has no or very less symptoms, this makes people unaware about that fact that they even have a diverticula! To treat diverticulitis you need antibiotics or even surgery depending on the severity of the case.
What to eat when you suffer from diverticulitis?
If you happen to experience severe symptoms, your doc will recommend a liquid diet as a part of the treatment of diverticulitis. It can include the following:
- Fruit juices
- Ice pops
The doctor will advise you to gradually get back to your regular diet. He or she will recommend you to start with consuming low fibre foods such as white bread, meat, poultry, fish, dairy products and meat before heading to consume high-fibre foods.
Fibre is known to soften the stool and add bulk to it, helping it to pass more easily through your colon. It also helps in reducing pressure in the digestive tract.
Several studies have shown that consuming fibre rich foods helps control the symptoms of the ailment. Try to consume a minimum of 25 to 35 g of fibre every single day.
Here are some fibre rich foods that need to be included in meals:
- Whole grain breads, cereals
- Beans such as kidney beans, black beans etc
- Fresh fruits like pears, apples and prunes
- Veggies like squash, peas, spinach and potatoes.
To structure your diet, it would be better to consult your doctor or a dietician if you are finding it difficult to structure your diet on your own. They can design a plan that works well for you. You might also be recommended to have fibre supplements such as psyllium 1 to 3 times in a day. Drinking lots o fluids and water throughout the day will help in preventing constipation.
Foods to avoid when you suffer from diverticulitis
In the past, health experts asked people with diverticular disease i.e. diverticulosis or diverticulitis to avoid consuming foods that are hard to digest namely nuts, corn seeds and popcorn. It was so because they felt that such foods would get stuck in the bulging pouches of the large intestine (diverticula) and result in inflammation. However, latest studies done in this regard say that there is not any real scientific evidence to back this up. Instead nuts and seeds are looked upon as high fibre foods that are recommended for individuals suffering from diverticular disease.
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