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The Diverticulitis Diet

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First of all, you're probably wondering what "diverticulitis" is.
Diverticulitis is a painful condition that affects the intestines. If
pockets (diverticula) in the walls of your intestines become inflamed or
infected then you have a case of diverticulitis. This condition isn't
common among young adults but is seen quite often in those aged 40 and
older.

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The exact cause of diverticulitis isn't known. Some doctors believe
that food particles, such as small seeds, get lodged in the pockets and
cause the condition. However, that theory hasn't been proven. But
regardless of what causes the condition, the best way to reverse the
condition is to follow a diverticulitis diet.

If you have diverticulitis, the last thing you want to do is eat a
lot of food. So a low–fiber diet consisting of small portions is
recommended. You also don't want an increased number of bowel movements,
as this will only irritate the symptoms. Your doctor may recommend that
you eat less than 10 grams of fiber per day while on a diverticulitis
diet. Fiber is usually great for you, but it's not when you're having
problems with your intestines. The reason fiber intake should be reduced
is because the more bile build–up in your intestines, the longer it'll
take you to heal. To combat this problem, your doctor will probably
suggest you take some type of vitamin or mineral supplement.

What foods should be included in a diverticulitis diet?

Basically, any healthy food that doesn't cause increased bowel
movements is ok to eat. Foods that are high in fiber should be avoided.
Some foods that are ok to eat include white bread, bagels, plain toast,
white rice, pasta, and noodles. These are foods that aren't normally
recommended, but in the case of the diverticulitis diet, they're ok. The
reason is because they're all low in fiber, and won't contribute to
increased bowel movements.

You also have to be careful about the types of fruit you consume.
Fruit juice is fine to drink as long as it's not prune juice. Prune
juice is great if you want to have a bowel movement, but it's terrible if
you want the exact opposite. You can also eat applesauce, apricots,
grapes, peaches, and watermelon. Raw and dried fruits, as well as
raisins and berries should be avoided. These foods are known to cause
bowel movements.

When on a diverticulitis diet, you can eat just about any type of
vegetable. Peeled potatoes, beets, carrots, celery, and lettuce are all
recommended foods. You can also drink vegetable juice. However, you
should avoid vegetables that promote bowel movement. These are usually
green vegetables, such as broccoli, cabbage, and kale.

The diverticulitis diet is short–term only

When your symptoms improve, you should slowly move away from the
diverticulitis diet. It's important to gradually add fiber back into
your diet. A high fiber diet actually helps prevent diverticulitis, so
make sure you get enough to lessen your chances of having more problems
with your intestines. You should also make sure to get enough fluids.

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