Diet for Diverticulitis: Recommendations and Myths


– Diverticulitis is an extremely unpleasant digestive disease. Now those diagnosed will know
it’s worth taking measures to avoid any future episodes, unfortunately, one in five will experience another flare-up within five years. In this video I’m looking at
what diet changes may help, as well as some myths about
common foods to avoid. (tinkling chimes) Just to clarify, diverticulosis, refers to having diverticula,
which are the small pockets that form in your large intestine, that have not yet become
infected and painful. Now diverticulitis, occurs
when those diverticula become inflamed and infected. So diverticulosis will always
occur before diverticulitis, and together, these two conditions are known as diverticular disease. Unfortunately the risk of
diverticulosis increases as we grow older, to about 70%
of people aged 80 and above. Fortunately, it only
progresses to diverticulitis, the inflamed version,
about 4% of the time. With regards to diet, the
first thing I want to look at is probiotics, which
are bacteria that we eat specifically for health benefits. Studies show a variety of
different probiotic strains are effective in reducing
symptoms of diverticulitis. Particularly those of Lactobacillus casei and Lactobacillus paracasei, and this was seen in tandem
with a high-fiber diet. Probiotics have also been
successfully combined with the anti-inflammatory drug Mesalamine to help reduce acute
symptoms of diverticulitis. However, it’s uncertain if probiotics reduce the risk of recurrence. The best food sources of
probiotics are fermented foods like yogurt, quark, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, and tempeh, et cetera. Probiotic supplements
are also a great option, but the recommended dosages
have yet to be determined. Now I mentioned just before
that the benefits of probiotics were seen in tandem
with a high-fiber diet, and it seems that the
more fiber, the better. One observational study found
those who ate 25 grams or more of fiber per day, had a 41% lower risk of being hospitalized for diverticulitis, compared to those who ate
less than 14 grams per day. Another study that followed
more than 690,000 women without diverticular disease, found that each additional
five grams of fiber per day, was associated with a 15% reduction in risk of diverticulitis. Now considering that fiber has numerous other-known benefits for health, particularly in maintaining
healthy gut bacteria, it makes sense to recommend
a high-fiber diet. Unfortunately these days
most people only eat about half of the recommended amounts, women should aim for
about 25 grams per day, while men should be eating
upwards of 38 grams per day, so basically it means eat more
vegetables and more legumes. OK, so let’s move on to some common rumors surrounding diverticulitis and diet, and the first one is that you should avoid nuts and seeds and corn and popcorn. For years we’ve been taught these foods can literally get stuck
in the diverticula, causing irritation and
eventually diverticulitis, but this theory has never been proven and research actually shows no link. This large study in 47,228
men found no associations with nut, corn, or popcorn consumption, and diverticulitis after
18 years of follow-up. If anything, these foods are
more likely to be protective of diverticulitis because
they tend to be high in fiber. The next rumor or myth that
I want to address is the idea that red meat increases
your diverticulitis risk. The idea is unproven, and was formed on the back
of observational studies that found vegetarians
were much less likely to develop diverticular disease
than the average person. But the reason vegetarian and
vegan diets are advantageous is because they’re almost
always higher in fiber than the typical Western diet. Additionally, non-meat
eaters tend to be more health-conscious than the average person. So it’s considerably more likely the real benefits lie
in eating more fiber, rather than cutting meat or animal foods. In other words, just
ensure your eating pattern encourages you to eat more vegetables, nuts, seeds, and other high-fiber foods. Lastly I just want to mention vitamin D, which is kind of diet-related, but, we actually get most of it from the sun. Now low vitamin D levels
are strongly linked with increased risk of diverticulitis, so you should definitely get that screened at your doctor in a routine checkup, and supplement and correct
that deficiency if necessary. Thanks for watching, if you
found this video useful, please give a thumbs up, and if you haven’t already,
don’t forget to subscribe to the Diet vs Disease YouTube channel by clicking the red
button below this video. (vibrant rock music)

42 thoughts on “Diet for Diverticulitis: Recommendations and Myths

  1. I have diverticulosis and when I get flares I do a sea salt cleanse and take colloidal silver and have been able to avoid those massive doses of antibiotics they wanted me to take in the emergency many times. I find I do best at no higher than 20 gms of fibre a day or it causes more irritation. I can eat pecans because they are easily digested compared to other nuts. Popcorn causes me flares, but red meat and bread actually helps me.

  2. I ate sweetcorn, and it caused a flare up and I had to be hospitalized, and hace iv antibiotic to stabilise the condition, soo no more sweetcorn for me. And popcorn..

  3. I've watched many many videos..All kinds of videos on this topic..smh..Some people will say anything. Even, what appear to be Doctors, have me shaking my head…like, this is..that is..bullshit!… I Love your video and the information that you covered. Your approach is brilliant. Your knowledge is SO true! I can sincerely bare witness to everything that You're saying. It's amazing! My story is SO long, but It's so real, a horror film could be made based on this condition. A symbol of the terror when having an episode. Fear at the thought an eternity of recurrences. Being prayerful when in remission. The suffering day/night chronic effects. The nightmares of knowing that you're young, but that you have to live with this, growing elderly(like being in a lifelong abusive marriage), until death do you part. To wake up, and only realise that It's true!
    ..

  4. Hi Just found out I have Diverticular disease….scared am only 55 🙁 In the patient information notes it says that that there is no hard and fast rules about eating more fibre….need information about up-to-date studies….can anybody help with this. Thanks

  5. Sorry to say I agree with Linda below. I just came home from a stay in my ER for continuous (48 hours) of belching with nothing but a shot of Thorazine to knock out the burps and make me sleep. I have been looking, Linda, for some decent information which doesn't "push" a product on the poor victim! That was a scary 48 hours and a trip to the ER was scary as well, since I am my wife's only caretaker. My wife suffered a "developing stroke" 1.5 years ago and I just cannot afford the time away from her to be sick. Anything new from your end (so to speak), Linda? Thanks for any help from ANYONE! —- Bill

  6. My mum told me she has diverticulitis and I wasn't sure what it is, I am doing research to help her get better. I have made a list of foods to have and foods to avoid… my mum is 49, all the videos I have seen have talked about this disease (not sure what to call it … disease or condition…??) occurring in 80 year olds. I am so worried for my mum, I am in my senior years at high school and don't know what to do, I want to help mum now but if I don't focus on school as well, I won't be able to help her in the future. I really need someone to just give me some information on how and when to help her. I have no trouble in driving her around or getting her food or medications she needs. I guess this is just a rant of me being worried… 🙁

  7. I'm 35 and I had diverticulitis about 8 times in 7 years. One thing I can say… is that out of the 7 times I have gone to the hospital and seeing 7 different doctors… no 2 of them have said the same thing. They all have different opinions about diets and what does and doesn't cause a flare up… frustrating to say the least….

  8. Videos like this completely confuse me. I've read everywhere that you should go on a liquid diet for couple of days and then have no fiber for the next few days to give your colon a rest. This video state this anywhere. So where does liquid/no fiber diet fit into all this?

  9. My experience and self recovery of diverticulitis is like this. Over a period of a couple of weeks The sickness is working up to the point of.. I get desperate, feel miserable all over along with elevated temp, painfully tender abdominal area like in hard labor of child birth.. at which point it’s a trip to the Hospital OR drink 5 teaspoons of awful Epsom salts dissolved in a glass of water. And in addition to that, do not eat solid food for a few days. Until I think it’s safe to introduce solid foods Again I drink electrolytes and clear organic coconut juice. For me it’s been my diet now for 2 weeks. I’m still scared to eat. This works for me with each attack. The salts draw water from the body right through the intestinal wall. I guess it clears those pockets of infection and moves what’s clumped up making the sickness. It all goes out as waste finally giving the raw intestines relief. I haven’t been hospitalized yet. I have had 3 attacks in 3 years.

  10. Thank you for dispelling myths with facts! I do know that poppy seeds bother me big time, but am so happy I don't have to give up nuts! I already have to eat a noninflammatory diet, due to RA, and have to avoid wheat, dairy, nightshade family veggies. After a loss of 30 lbs over a two month period, I was just diagnosed with diverticulitis. If I also have to give up the long list of foods so many sites warn against, (beans, nuts, ALL grains, broccoli, cabbage, peanut or almond butter) I'm going to be left with a pretty limited diet, and that can't be healthy, either. I'm going to just have to experiment for myself, now that I know.

  11. I just got told I have this and my doctor said I was the youngest person at 29 he treated for this.

  12. Can't eat nuts seeds anything like that. I would be in pain and sick for days. Spicy food is no good. Peppers and onions too.

  13. I'm 21 and I was just diagnosed with Diverticulosis, this shit isn't fun and I have no idea what foods I can or can't eat

  14. I have just been diagnosed with diverticulitis and was in hospital for a week with a perforated bowel which was painful to say the least I have been out of hospital 1 week and already had a flare up after eating a boiled baby potato with the skin on I have been told on one hand to gradually add more fibre to my diet and on the other to avoid fibre I am very confused, can anyone tell me how long I should wait before adding more fibre into my diet because my doctor didnt seem to know much she gave me a booklet she printed off google and she avoided the question when I asked to speak to a nutritionist…. please help 😥

  15. Very interesting and what he said was alot of what I suspected. There are two types of fiber,soluble and insoluble. I believe this is the main reason some can`t tolerate ex: corn. If your experiencing diarrhea you avoid corn and certain other insoluble fiber. When constipated you would eat more of them. I had an attack of diverticultis this week ,am taking antibiotics now and I agree I was not eating enough fiber leading up to it. Once you have it,yes you have to avoid temporarily and mostly liquids to give thee intestines a rest. You do however have to start again within a few days gradually. I have noticed in the past if I get enough fiber I can eat corn,popcorn and anything really…. My lazy eating is usually what gets me into trouble,strictly speaking for myself. Thank-you Joe,time to get back on track.

  16. I’m 33 and recently been diagnosed with diverticula disease, I had to have surgery. The hospital discharged me after a week with no information they didn’t even tell me what I had until I read my discharge letter when I got home, literally said here’s antibiotics take them for 7 days, got home and read the letter which turned out to say “Perforated diverticula disease”. I’ve been driving myself crazy reading stuff online which all seems contrasting and different sites contradict what over sites are saying. I literally don’t know what to eat or what not to eat.

  17. I was just diagnosed with diverticulitis. We can keep each other in prayer that GOD will heal this disease. Let's just do the best we can by eating the right things and let GOD do the rest. GOD BLESS YOU all

  18. Foods that have caused diverticulitis to my family, friends and I: popcorn, tomato seeds, peanuts, crunchy peanut butter, strawberries, canned corn and corn on the cob, blueberries and raspberries. Meanwhile, I try to stay away from assorted nuts however I am not sure if it would cause a problem. Good luck.

  19. Sucks to say it but the cold hard truth is that NOTHING you do or say or eat will stop a flare up. Some of us are just susceptible to it (most likely hereditary). The best you can do is eat what YOU feel comfortable with as far as digesting and hope you don’t get a complication…

  20. LOST A MUM IN 2008 AND A SIS 3 WEEKS AGO TO THIS DISEASE,
    i myself got it..have been having flare ups..since 2011,the first flare ups i been hospitalized and all they gave me was intravenous antibiotic to :"protect my stomach" so they said and ,schedule a colonoscopy which i refused to undergo.
    from then i been having flares up on and on..last year was less,this year i had one in april and one just in the 12 of may.
    bloating.
    cannot belch..cannot pass motion,painful swollen instestine..terrible cramps and fever!
    my home remedy?
    leave a soaked pitted plum over night and drink the water morning.also eat the fruit
    i make a smoothie of;
    honey
    yogurt
    papaya
    lemon
    ginger
    turmeric and coconut oil
    drink it and stabilized the intestine. plus probiotics than i got diarrhea. which helped cleanse the colon naturally .going to the docs is a waste of time! my sister and mother died cos they underwent this evasive /delicate intestinal surgery.which is not for those who are already debilitated and old
    my sister was 62 and my mom 82

  21. The only purest and best form to cure,not to heal is to take Green buds of fine Kaneh bosm.antibiotics destroying your bowel but never helps,and Nobody wants an Operation ..ultimate weapon against this Horror.

  22. I’ve struggled with diverticular disease for almost 20 years but the last 2 have been really hard. I couldn’t seem to get out of an attack and I was frustrated beyond measure because I just couldn’t get on top of it and I wasn’t eating ANY of the foods that were my known triggers. Antibiotics were the only thing that would turn my attacks around but they knocked my off my feet for at least a week every time I had to take them and like I mentioned the last two years I was on them more than I was off of them it seemed. So I started looking for a more natural way to combat my attacks. I fixed mine with Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar (non pasteurized with the mother) I take the capsules every single day and if I feel an attack coming I drink 1 shot glass of straight ACV for 2 days, sometimes 3 if it doesn’t feel like I’ve got it turned around. This has changed my life! The attacks are still hard and take a toll on me but nothing like the attack combined with the antibiotics did! If you’re having trouble try ACV and see if it will help you too! =}

  23. My gastrointerologist has me on the low fodmap diet. So far things going pretty good. it is low fiber.granted i am just diverticulosis, is crazy how there seems to be always opposite treatments for everything these days. i think the medical field has just gotten worse, is the 21st century and is crazy the things medicine can't treat or even properly diagnose. i went 2 months without anything to eat daily but a spoonful of applesauce here and there. i lost 60 lbs. I underwent numerous probes, tests, only to be told they didn't know what i had or what did it.Thousands of dollars for that info?????

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