Are there trigger foods I should avoid to prevent diverticulitis attacks?

Answers from Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.

Actually, no specific foods are known to trigger diverticulitis attacks. And no special diet has been proved to prevent attacks.

In the past, people with small pouches (diverticula) in the lining of the colon were told to avoid nuts, seeds and popcorn. It was thought that these foods could lodge in diverticula and cause inflammation (diverticulitis). But there's no evidence that these foods cause diverticulitis.

If you have diverticula, focus on eating a healthy diet that's high in fiber. High-fiber foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, soften waste and help it pass more quickly through your colon. This reduces pressure within your digestive tract, which may help reduce the risk of diverticula forming and becoming inflamed.

If you think that you're having a diverticulitis attack, talk to your doctor. Your doctor may suggest that you follow a clear liquid diet for a few days to let your digestive tract rest and heal.

Sept. 20, 2016