There are no specific foods that prevent or treat diverticulitis, but a diet high in fiber-rich foods, such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables, helps to soften the stools for easier elimination, according to Mayo Clinic. If symptoms are severe, a liquid diet may be prescribed.
During a diverticulitis flare, only clear liquids are ingested for a few days, including fruit juices, black coffee and tea, broth and popsicles, reports Mayo Clinic. Gradually, low-fiber foods are added back into the diet, such as canned and cooked vegetables and fruits, white bread, rice, pasta, dairy products and light protein sources such as fish, eggs and chicken. Antibiotics may be prescribed in addition to the sparse diet, giving the digestive system a chance to heal.
There is no need for individuals with diverticulitis to avoid nuts and seeds, foods that were once thought to be problematic for the condition, explains WebMD. Studies show that high-fiber foods, such as nuts, seeds, beans and whole grain products can help treat the symptoms of diverticulitis. A minimum of 25 to 35 grams of fiber daily is the recommended amount, and supplements such as psyllium are often used if adequate fiber is not obtained from the diet alone. Sufficient water intake is also important to keep the waste matter hydrated and lessen the pressure on the digestive system.