What Foods Should You Avoid If You Have Diverticulitis?

Formerly, doctors suggested that individuals with diverticulitis avoid foods that are difficult to digest, such as nuts, seeds, corn and popcorn, states WebMD. Doctors originally thought that these foods could lodge in the diverticula and cause irritation. However, as of 2015, there is no scientific research to support this idea.

People with a recent flare-up of diverticulitis or those experiencing diverticulitis symptoms may need to consume a liquid diet for several days, according to WebMD. A liquid diet typically consists of water, broth, fruit juices and ice pops. As symptoms decrease, the patient slowly progresses to a low-fiber diet, consisting of foods such as white bread, dairy products, fish and eggs. When recovering from a diverticulitis attack, people sometimes must avoid foods that are high in fiber, such as fruits, vegetables and whole-grain foods, explains MedlinePlus.

Individuals with diverticulitis should resume a high-fiber diet when symptoms resolve, states MedlinePlus. Some foods that are high in fiber include oatmeal, fruit, and whole-grain breads, cereals and muffins. Lettuce, vegetable juice, fruit and cooked vegetables are also included in a high-fiber diet. Consuming at least 25 to 35 grams of fiber each day can help prevent diverticulitis symptoms and attacks by reducing pressure in the digestive tract and making stools bulkier, explains WebMD.