Clear Liquid Diet
A clear liquid diet is made up on only clear fluids and foods that turn to clear liquid when they are at room temperature. It includes things like clear broth, tea, cranberry juice (when not preparing for a colonoscopy), Jell-O (not red when preparing for a colonoscopy), and Popsicles (not red when preparing for a colonoscopy).
Eating only clear liquid gives you enough nutrition for 3 to 4 days. It is safe for people with diabetes, but only for a short time when they are closely being followed by a doctor. This diet is often used before a medical test or procedure, before certain surgeries, or as a result of an intestinal problem. It is important to follow this clear liquid diet EXACTLY when prescribed by your physician.
If you have diarrhea or have a stomach problem and your doctor prescribes a CLEAR LIQUID DIET, it will normally be followed by a subsequent diet where you progress to solids, but only as prescribed by your physician.
What Can You Eat or Drink:
You can eat or drink only the things you can see through. Clear fruit juices are okay, but juice with nectar or pulp are NOT okay. Milk is also NOT okay. Broth or consommé with fat bubbles floating on top, need to be removed by freezing the broth and skimming off the fat first.
You can have these clear liquids:
- Plain water
- Fruit juices without pulp, such as filtered apple juice.
- Soup broth (bouillon or consommé without fat)
- Clear soda, such as Ginger Ale and Sprite
- Gelatin (Jell-O)
- Popsicles that do not have bits of fruit or fruit pulp in them
- Sports drinks (like Gatorade, etc.)
- Tea or Coffee with no cream or milk added
It is okay to add sugar and lemon to your hot tea. Remember: DON’T add milk or cream to your tea or coffee.
When on a clear liquid diet, try having a mix of 3 to 5 of these choices for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to vary your clear liquid diet. Avoid thinks that are not on the list, including fruit nectars and canned or frozen fruit.
Please note: If preparing for a COLONSCOPY, all clear liquids must not have ANY red coloring. These include NO cranberry juice, red Jell-O, red popsicles, red sports drinks, etc.
Tips To Help Reduce Gas and Bloating:
- Increase the amount of fluid you drink, especially water
- Avoid carbonated drinks.
- Avoid alcoholic beverages.
- Avoid foods that cause gas, such as beans, broccoli, cabbage, and bran.
- Avoid swallowing air. Swallowing air may increase your symptoms.
- Eat slowly and chew your food through.
- Do not rush through a meal. You are more likely to swallow air and push gas into your stomach.
- Avoid drinking with a straw.
- Avoid chewing gum or eating hard candy.
- Do not smoke or consume other tobacco products.
- If you wear dentures, check with a dentist to make sure they fit adequately.
- Reduce stress. Relax and keep calm. Tension can cause you to swallow air.
- Exercise regularly.
Fiber is a substance found in plants. Dietary fiber, the kind you eat, is found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. It not only can help in relieving constipation, it has other health benefits as well. Foods containing fiber can also help in maintaining a healthy weight and lowering the risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Dietary fiber adds bulk to your diet. It includes the parts of plant foods that your body does not digest or absorb. It passes almost intact through your stomach, small intestine, colon, and out of the body.
These are two forms of fiber: soluble and insoluble.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material during digestion. It slows digestion, and this is why it has a secondary benefit of helping you feel full, thereby helping in the maintenance of weight. It can help lower blood cholesterol, which can help prevent heart disease, and lower glucose levels. This soluble fiber is found is found in oats, peas, beans, apples, citrus fruits, carrots, barley and psyllium.
Insoluble fiber helps in the movement of material through your digestive system. It increases stool bulk, so it can benefit those that have irregular stools and constipation. Insoluble fiber is found in whole wheat flour, wheat bran, vegetables, nuts, beans, and potatoes.
Most plant-based foods have both soluble and insoluble fiber such as beans and oatmeal. The amount of soluble and insoluble fiber in each varies with the different plant foods.
It is recommended you eat both types of fiber in your diet to get the most benefit for a healthy you.
Fresh Fruits: Oranges, Peaches, Pears, Plums
Fresh Vegetables: Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Eggplant, Lettuce, Spinach, Sweet Potatoes, and Yams.
Foods: Bran Cereals, Whole Grain Cereals, Whole Grain Bread (Soluble)
Wild rice, Wheat bran, Corn meal (whole grains) (insoluble)
Beans, Chickpeas, Lentils, Peas (legumes) (soluble)
- To increase your dietary fiber, be sure to eat bran cereal and whole wheat bread daily.
- In addition, eat at least two of the fresh fruits and two of the fresh vegetables listed above each day.
- Avoid canned or frozen fruits and vegetables, instant “quick-cooking” foods, and convenience type snack foods.
Supplement this High Fiber diet with the following:
Benefiber: take 1-2 tablespoons, up to 3 times daily in liquid or soft foods. You can also use Perdiem, Metamucil, Citrucel, or Konsyl (any other bulk agent that is contains psyllium).
Miller’s Bran: 4-6 tablespoons each day (available in Health Food Stores)
If bowel movements are particularly hard, 1 Surfak should only be used on an occasional basis.
Adequate intake of fluids, as well as fiber, will help maintain soft stools.
How much do you need each day to control constipation, maintain bowel regularity, and promote good colon health?
Men age 50 years or younger: 38 grams of dietary fiber daily.
Men age 50 years or older: 30 grams of dietary fiber daily.
Women age 50 or younger: 25 grams of dietary fiber daily.
Women age 51 years or older: 21 grams of dietary fiber daily.
½ soluble fiber intake from Oats, Oat bran, Legumes and Fresh and dried fruits. Plus, ½ soluble fiber intake of whole grains.
½ cup of super fiber cereal (100% bran) + 2 tablespoons of Benefiber or any other or Miller’s bran.
4-6 tablespoons of Benefiber or any other, or Miller’s bran per day to be added to soup, cereal, salad, yogurt, or cottage cheese.
Substitute fresh fruit for fruit juice and brown rice for mashed potatoes.
Use fiber additives slowly and increase amounts gradually over time.
Drink at least eight glasses of fluid each day, unless you have severe heart or kidney problems. Fiber without enough liquids can cause constipation. Water, juice, and non-caffeinated beverages are best.
Eating a large amount of fiber in a short period of time can cause intestinal gas (flatulence), bloating, and abdominal cramps. This usually goes away once the natural bacteria in the digestive system get used to the increase in fiber in the diet. Adding fiber to the diet gradually, and not all at one time, can help reduce gas or even diarrhea.
Too much fiber may interfere with the absorption of minerals such as magnesium, zinc, iron, and calcium. However, this usually does not cause too much concern since high-fiber foods are usually rich in minerals.
1. What is Fructose?
Fructose is a simple sugar that occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables, and honey. Fructose intolerance can occur in people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and other gastrointestinal disorders. Fruits and fruit juices with higher levels of fructose may cause gas, bloating, abdominal cramping, and diarrhea. Glucose is also a naturally occurring sugar. If a drink, juice, or product has more glucose than fructose, then it might be more tolerable.
High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)
HFCS is made up of almost half glucose and half fructose and may be absorbed just as well as sucrose which is regular table sugar. Products with HFCS such as fruit drinks may be tolerated well when limited to 12 ounces a day with a meal. HFCS can also be found in canned, baked, or processed foods such as catsup, barbeque sauces, jams, jellies, chocolate milk, and many more.
Some patients with a fructose intolerance that ingest a small amount of processed fruit juice or foods with HFCS can have as much intestinal discomfort as a result of malabsorption, as eating a large amount of fruit.
- Eliminate products with ingredients that list fructose, crystalline fructose (not HFCS), and honey on the label.
- Limit drinks with HFCS; if sued, drink less than the recommended serving size, e.g., less than 12 ounces of soda, and it might help to drink it with a meal.
- Keep in mind the amount of fructose found in 2 apples or 2 ounces of honey is that same as the fructose found in one can of soda.
- Follow the guidelines below for fruits, vegetables, and other foods that are friendlier to your intestines.
Please note: The foods listed below as “Foods to Avoid” should not be eaten AT ALL because of their high fructose content. These foods are otherwise healthy.
- Serving size is ½ cup
- Limit to 1 to 2 servings per day.
- Fresh or fresh frozen fruit may be better tolerated than canned fruit.
- Tolerance may depend on the amount you eat at one time.
- Limit concentrated sources such as dried fruit and fruit juices or eating large amounts of any fruit.
|Intestine Friendly||Foods to Avoid||Questionable Foods/Limit|
|Bananas*||Apples||Other Fruit Juices or drinks|
|Blackberries||Apple Cider||Sugar-free Jam/Jelly|
|Blueberries||Apple Juice||Dried Fruit|
|Grapefruit||Applesauce||Canned Fruit in heavy syrup|
|Grapes||Apricots||Any other fruits not listed|
|Melons (except Watermelons)||Pears|
- Serving size is ½ cup (most vegetables) or 1 cup (leafy green vegetables)
- Limit to 3 servings a day.
- Cooked vegetables may be tolerated best as cooking causes the loss of free sugars.
- Keep in mind tolerance may depend on the AMOUNT you eat at ONE TIME.
|Intestine Friendly||Foods to Avoid||Questionable Foods/Limit|
|Asparagus||Sugar Snap Peas||Carrot|