Diverticulitis is an intestinal disease where pouches form and become infected or inflamed. It leads to constipation that can make the condition worse. One effective way to treat it is to switch to a high-fiber diet that softens the stool. It can also help heal the infected part of the intestine, usually the colon, and possibly lead to weight loss. Finish any antibiotics or doctor-prescribed diet before attempting this new diet.
Increase the amount of water you drink until your urine is always close to colorless. Drink water at each meal and between meals. At the same time, decrease or eliminate caffeine, chocolate and other diuretics. Caffeine dehydrates you and can cause extra pain in the colon. Smoking can have the same effect. If you do smoke, this is yet another reason to quit.
Gradually increase your fiber intake. Doctors recommend 25 to 30 g of fiber a day in a healthy diet, and most people only consume about 15 g a day. Someone recovering from this disease should have around 60 g a day, but the sudden change could cause more problems. Increase your intake by 5 g per day until you get to 60.
Eat high-fiber foods on a regular basis. Choose cereals with a fiber content of 9 to 14 g per cup. Add fiber powder to any liquids like herbal tea, pasta sauce or soup. Each serving is 5 g and does not change the taste of the food or drink. Have one or two slices of toast in the morning, two more at lunch, and another at dinner. Eat more fruits like apples, bananas and pears, more beans, brown or wild rice, and whole wheat foods. Raw fruit is worth 2 to 5 g each. For snacks, try nuts, carrot sticks or hummus.
Increase the amount of meals you have in a day, but decrease the portion sizes. Ideally you should have three small meals with two snacks, such as a raw vegetable and a nutrition bar, for a total of five eating sessions. Keep each one to 300 to 400 calories to help sustain your weight and caloric intake.
If you have 60 g of fiber per day and are adequately hydrated, you will never become constipated.