Colitis Diet
Learn the triggers

Colitis Diet - Colitis is a condition affecting the inner lining of the large bowel (colon and rectum). Together with Crohn’s disease it falls under the umbrella term of Irritable bowel disease (IBD). While the underlying cause of Colitis remains unknown, stress and diet are not believed to play a role.

Nutrition and proper diet however may play a significant part in management of the condition, not only to treat symptoms but to also improve overall health and well being and to manage weight as there is the potential for severe weight loss.

A Colitis Diet can improve nutrient and water
absorption, often lacking with this disease

The irritation and inflammation that characterises Colitis is believed to be generated by an abnormal reaction of the immune system. In some cases the intestines may even begin to form ulcers (known as Ulcerative Colitis) and scar or bleed.

The acute phase of the condition is characterized by vomiting, nausea, diarrhoea and stomach pain, otherwise known as a ‘flare up’. During this time certain dietary restrictions such as dairy and spicy foods may be recommended. Individuals suffering from the condition respond to foods in different ways and so it is recommended a food diary be kept in order to pinpoint any problem or ‘trigger’ foods. 

During a ‘flare up’ a limit may need to be placed on foods that increase bowel activity including regularity and gas production. Primarily this is foods containing high amounts of insoluble fibre. Some known problematic foods include:

  • refined starch or refined sugar, apples, particularly with the skin on
  • bananas, oranges, blueberries, figs, grapefruits, pears, raspberries
  • avocados, carrots, kale, popcorn, potatoes with the skin, bran, oats
  • brown rice, whole wheat breads, legumes, peas and nuts

Some people with Colitis may respond better to cooked or juiced fruits and vegetables rather than fresh.

Check out our Colitis diet plan.

In general, people who suffer from Colitis need to:

  • eat smaller, calorie rich meals at more frequent intervals
  • control the intake of high fibre foods
  • reduce the amount of fried or processed foods
  • limit dairy products while maintaining a healthy balanced diet packed with naturally sourced essential vitamins and minerals.

Certain foods are known to cause problems and should be treated with care or avoided altogether. There is no evidence that a specific diet can treat or prevent this disease and care should be taken when seeking advice.

Always seek medical advice before commencing any diet, especially if you have a specific health condition

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