Low Residue Foods - Part 2

As I previously wrote here in Part 1 of this series, we continue to talk about the ins and outs of roughage and what we consider to be low and high residue foods. Listed below are also some alternatives, such as cooking them down or stewing them.1

Raw vegetables to avoid

  • Broccoli
  • Lettuce
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Corn
  • Asparagus
  • Potatoes (unless peeled and boiled/mashed)
  • Edamame
  • Peas
  • Lentils
  • Cabbage
  • Peppers (especially hot peppers but even sweet peppers)
  • Green beans

Veggies to cook or steam

When cooked or steamed, these veggies may not present as much of an issue - but always use caution.

  • Carrots - Steamed is great. There are some great recipes in crock-pots & instant pots with carrots that I've found myself eating lately.
  • Broccoli - Steamed broccoli is a great source of fiber, potassium & folic acid. This can be a tricky veggie - use your best judgment).
  • Cauliflower -  Again, it’s roughage, so be considerate of the amount you are consuming.
  • Squash (As with all fruits & veggies, make sure ALL seeds have been removed)
  • Beets (remember if you have an ostomy, your output will change color - remember when emptying or you’ll be shocked for a brief moment if you don’t remember what you’ve eaten)

Raw fruits to be careful of

  • Pineapple - Thought pineapple can be a great source of anti-inflammatory food, beware! Eating them before they are the perfect amount of ripeness can cause diarrhea. Pineapple is also very high in fiber.
  • Bananas - Depending on ripeness, it can make a difference to people’s motility (ripe = constipation, softer = good to go, helps you go). As always, these are very different in every IBD patient.
  • Strawberries - Seeds can become an issue for a few IBDers.
  • Mango - Tends to be very high in fiber; portion control is best.
  • Apples - Apples can actually be a huge issue for those who have issues with partial obstructions; some patients may be able to eat if in the slow cooker and really “cooked” or stewed down.
  • Orange & orange juice can be bothersome for some, because of the pulp and, of course, the acidity.

Fruits to have, but be cautious CHEW WELL

  • Jams & jellies with no seeds/bulk/pulp
  • Cooked down apples
  • Blueberries

Meats you may digest just fine

  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Fish
  • TofuPlant-based “meats” that can be grown in labs that contain no meat - all plant-based. From personal experience, I'd give the advice that there can be a lot of processed material in these newer alternatives to meat, so try a little bit at a time and see how you handle it. (You may be just fine!)

Starches to eat or avoid

  • Veggie pasta - Recently, over the last 2 years, I've found myself eating more portions of veggie pasta because a) it's delicious & I can't tell a difference b) I don't tend to eat a lot of carbs, generally, so for me, this was a great alternative. I also happen to digest it well.
  • Potatoes - Peeled and boiled/mashed/cooked down potatoes will be more gut-friendly for us. You'll hear many IBD patients talking about how mashed potatoes are a go-to safe food for them. This is pretty common for people to eat during flares and is found on a lot of safe food lists for many.
  • White & Brown rice - rather than eating a ton of whole grain items like bread & buns, rice is a great alternative if you are able to swap out part of your meal with them.
  • Whole grain items (bread, buns, etc) - They can be tricky for patients with gut issues. Perhaps gluten-free is a better alternative for some, but whole grains provide so much fiber you may have issues with digestion.

Miscellaneous items that you may want to avoid

  • Nuts
  • Popcorn
  • Kraut (sauerkraut)
  • Seeds (Vegetable seeds, sunflower seeds, chia, pumpkin, sesame)
  • Granola
  • Bran

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