Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation and ulcers in the innermost lining of your large intestine and rectum. Symptoms can include cramping, diarrhea, rectal pain or bleeding, problems controlling bowel movements, weight loss, fever and fatigue. The severity of symptoms increase over time and can impair your ability to perform even the simplest of tasks.
There is no cure for ulcerative colitis. Although the cause of this debilitating disease is unknown, the symptoms can be managed with dietary restrictions and a low stress lifestyle. If you are diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, a physician may advise a low-FODMAP diet plan. FODMAPs are certain sugars and/or carbohydrates that are found in foods that can irritate a sensitive intestinal tract. Foods to avoid for colitis sufferers include:
When looking into how an ulcerative colitis diet can help your symptoms, it is best to avoid dairy products. This includes butter, milk, yogurt, and cheese. These items are high in FODMAPS and will aggravate your digestive system.
2. Nuts and seeds
Most people suffering from ulcerative colitis are advised to have a low fiber diet. This means that nuts that are high in fiber should be avoided if possible. The fiber content found in nuts like peanuts, cashews, walnuts and almonds are quite high and can be difficult for your digestive track to break down, irritating your intestines.
High protein comes with high fiber. Consequently beans and lentils are on the do not consume list. Beans also contain sugars that are unable to be digested and can also cause gas; both of which are terrible irritants of ulcerative colitis.
4. Raw fruits with seeds
Fiber is an enemy of the disease. Therefore, it is best to avoid any fruit or vegetable that is known to be high in fiber. Consume these vegetables only if they are seedless, peeled and cooked until soft. When consuming fruits, you should not eat any fruit where the seeds cannot be removed (such as strawberries). Fruit juices should be okay, as long as there is no pulp. A good rule of thumb is to avoid raw or undercooked fruits and vegetables.
Gluten is one of the proteins found in grains such as wheat, barley and rye. Suffers should avoid any food that contains gluten, including bread and pasta as well as condiments, sauces, soups, and various proteins.
Living with ulcerative colitis can be a painful and aggravating experience. However, if you are able to prepare food in the proper way, or avoid these foods altogether, you may be able to control your symptoms and flare ups. This practice combined with a low stress lifestyle can make the difference between living in agony and living well.