Colitis is the condition of the inflammation of the colon and this condition is characterized by the moderate to severe diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating and flatulence, nausea, fatigue and joint and muscle pain. The diagnosis is done through colonoscopy and by visualizing the tissue under microscope. In case of microscopic colitis, the condition is generally self-limiting and requires symptomatic treatment. Incorporating some foods in the diet may help in relieving the symptoms.
What Foods Soothe Colitis?
Water And Electrolytes: The main symptom of the colitis is the watery diarrhea. This leads to the considerable amount of water moving out of the body without getting reabsorbed. This may lead to dehydration and in severe circumstances cause hypotension and nausea. Thus, the water should be replenished in the body through drinking it at frequent intervals. Also, along with water, various electrolytes leave the body. Electrolytes should be replenished by mixing powdered electrolytes in water.
Probiotics: Probiotics are an important component when it comes to the inflammation of gastrointestinal tract. The friendly bacteria are responsible for modulating the immune system and helps relieving the diarrhea caused due to hyperactive immune system. Apart from the probiotics prescribed by the physician, the foods containing probiotics, such as curd, should be incorporated in to diet of colitis.
Low Fiber Diet: High fiber diet may increase the incidences of diarrhea as they are not digested. Thus, the colitis patient with watery diarrhea should be on low-fiber diet to reduce the frequency of diarrhea. Custards, puddings and sandwiches are the low fiber diets that may be incorporated in meals for colitis.
Low FODMAP Diet: As the digestive system is under severe stress in the microscopic colitis, a low-FODMAP diet is recommended which helps in soothing the symptoms. Low-FODMAP is a diet in which the compounds called FODMAP are either absent or are in a limited quantity. FODMAP comprises Fermentable, Oligosaccharide, Disaccharides,
Monosaccharides and Polyols. When the digestion of these substances takes place in the intestine, they draw a large quantity of water and releases gases such as carbon-dioxide and methane. These gases tend to expand the intestine leading to pain and bloating. Common ingredients in this category include fructose, lactose, galactans and polyols and should be avoided.
Easy To Digest Food: Easy to digest food should be included in the colitis diet. Easy to digest food include bananas, applesauce and melon. The rice can also be used in the diet. The food should be completely chewed before swallowing so that it is more easily digestible.
Low Fat Ingredients: The high fat ingredient and the ingredients which irritate the gastro-intestinal tract such as chips or spicy foods should be avoided, and the colitis patient should eat the diet which is low in fat. Cheese, plain cereal and boiled potatoes are the examples of such diet.
Frankincense Extract: An important component to be incorporated in the colitis diet is Frankincense Extract. It is also known as Boswellia. The chemical found in this extract has the property to inhibit 5-lipoxygenase, which is an essential enzyme in the biosynthesis of leukotrienes. Various studies have concluded the efficacy of Frankincense Extract in reducing the inflammation related to colitis. In some studies, higher efficacy of this extract was found as compared to prescription drugs administered for colitis.
Frequency Of Meals: In colitis, food is not properly digested. This may lead to the symptoms of malnutrition. Large meals taken in such hostile condition may put further stress on digestive system and aggravates symptoms. Thus, small meals at regular intervals are recommended in case of microscopic colitis.
Various foods are recommended in the condition of colitis as this may reduce the stress on the digestive system and helps relieving symptoms. The most important thing to be incorporated is water and electrolytes as there is a direct loss of both components. Further, the food should be low-fiber and low-fat and also free from substances irritating the colon. Also, the food should be easy to digest. Small frequent meals are preferred over large meals.
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