Colitis, or ulcerative colitis, is a specific kind of inflammatory bowel disease. It can cause agonizing symptoms such as extreme abdominal discomfort, loss of appetite, and diarrhea. Following a healthy diet for colitis and making some simple dietary changes can help in effectively managing the condition and easing the symptoms, but how do you know which foods to eat and which ones to avoid? Well, this article focuses on the list of foods that might be beneficial for people suffering from this inflammatory disease. Also, it lists certain food items to avoid the worsening of symptoms. Let’s have a look.
Foods to Eat
With so many potential food triggers, it can sometimes be difficult to identify the exact cause that may prompt the symptoms. Also, with trigger foods, those that are safe and do not flare up symptoms will vary from person to person.
Some of the most common food items that usually form a part of healthy diets for colitis are as follows:
Avocados are helpful for treating ulcerative colitis as they are especially high in nutrients.
This is also a powerhouse of nutrients, but, at the same time, the presence of fructose and high fiber content may cause unnecessary triggering of symptoms in some people.
Eggs are good for health, especially as they contain omega-3 supplementation.
Squash is found to be helpful in easing the symptoms of colitis.
Salmon is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids that have a lot of health benefits besides aiding digestion.
- Fermented Foods
Fermented foods such as yogurts contain active probiotics that help in digestion. Also, it is believed that regular use of probiotics is one of the best long-term treatment options for colitis.
Oatmeal is a good option as it is easier to digest.
In addition to the abovementioned food items that are integral to diets for colitis, it is advisable to consume plenty of liquids to avoid diarrhea and subsequent dehydration.
Foods to Avoid
Although food is not the cause of ulcerative colitis, it is widely believed that it can have a huge impact on the symptoms of the disease. Therefore, it is advisable to consume good diets for colitis and avoid the following food items to efficiently manage the condition.
Caffeine, which is found in a huge quantity in coffee, soda, tea, and chocolates, can make the symptoms worse. It can meddle with the activities of the digestive tract and increase the abdominal pain.
- Dairy Products
Dairy products can often aggravate the symptoms. Also, people who are lactose intolerant should especially avoid these products as the symptoms are quite similar.
Excessive consumption of alcohol can make the symptoms worse.
- Carbonated Drinks
Mostly, all carbonated drinks contain artificial sweeteners and caffeine that trigger ulcerative colitis. Also, these drinks can cause gas and further irritate the digestive tract.
- Foods Rich in Fiber
Foods that contain high amounts of fiber, such as whole grains, beans, fruits, peas, and legumes, can worsen abdominal cramps. Also, they can cause acidity, indigestion, and irregular bowel movements.
Popcorn is hard to digest and, therefore, should be avoided.
- Fatty Meat
Meat is high in fats, which cannot be adequately absorbed during the symptoms.
- Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds can lead to excessive abdominal cramping, diarrhea and bloating. Hence, these should not be a part of your diets for colitis.
- Fructose Sugar
High-fructose food items such as honey, fruit juice, and corn syrup can cause cramping, bloating, and acidity.
Certain vegetables are generally rich in fiber, which makes them hard to digest. This can increase the troubles of digestion by causing gas and cramping. Therefore, it is best to avoid vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, sprouts, and celery.
Gluten, which is found in rye, wheat, and barley, can be a reason for triggering colitis. Oats do not contain gluten, but they contain a similar protein that can sometimes trigger a reaction. Therefore, it is best to eat oats cautiously and note for any reaction after its consumption.
- Spicy Foods
Spicy foods, hot sauces, and red peppers can worsen the symptoms of colitis in people. Therefore, it is best to stay away from spicy foods.
- Foods Containing Sulfur or Sulfites
Make sure your diets for colitis do not contain foods with sulfur or sulfites as they can cause acidity. Such foods include almonds, soy, wheat pasta, beer, peanuts, cured meats, raisins, bread, wine, and cider.
If you have ulcerative colitis, it is best to maintain a food journal that lists the best diets for colitis. This can help you in identifying your preferred food choices and avoiding the potential food triggers. Also, you should occasionally review your diet plans to check for any changes in the body’s reaction to food.