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Digestive Disorders

Diverticulitis

02/24/2003

Question:

What foods should a person with diverticulitis avoid? My mother was recently diagnosed and I`d like to be sure she gets the right diet.

Answer:

There is no specific "diet" for patients with diverticulitis, but there are two general dietary changes that are recommended. First is to increase the daily amount of dietary fiber such as fruits, vegetables, and grains and even add a fiber supplement if necessary. Second most physicians also recommend avoiding foods that contain nuts, seeds, and kernels. These hard materials are not digestible and in theory could occlude the opening of diverticuli in the colon and precipitate an attack of diverticulitis (never been proven, however).

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Response by:

John D Long, MD
Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati