Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease. Those affected are at high risk of malnutrition due to recurrent diarrhea and damage to their intestinal lining. They usually lack protein and micronutrients such as calcium, iron, zinc, folic acid or vitamins D and B12 – this also weakens the body. Malnutrition can promote relapses, which is why ensuring adequate nutritional intake is so important.
Even if it’s not “the Nutrition for colitis” gives: The chance of nutritional therapy for ulcerative colitis lies in maintaining the symptom-free period for as long as possible.
Dietary recommendations differ depending on the stage of the disease (acute phase or resting phase).
Ulcerative colitis: eat vigorously during the resting phase
If there is no diarrhea (more than three bowel movements per day) and no visible blood in the stool, it is called remission. For this phase, a light complete diet rich in calories, vitamins and fiber is recommended. So lots of whole grain products (finely ground), vegetables, soft fruits, nuts and legumes, eggs. You should avoid foods and methods of preparation that often cause symptoms: fried and fatty foods such as french fries, smoked fried foods, breaded foods, heavily seasoned foods, foods that are too hot or too cold. A steamer is ideal for gentle cooking.
Anti-inflammatory foods such as omega-3 fatty acids (from flaxseed oil, salmon, for example) and berries containing anthocyanins, especially blueberries, can help. Up to three cups of freshly filtered coffee a day also has an anti-inflammatory effect.
Ulcerative colitis: gentle on the intestines eating in the acute phase
During an inflammatory flare-up, only a few mild foods are often tolerated. There is often a flare-up of intolerance to sugar (lactose, fructose, sorbitol). In addition to The nutritional recommendations for the remission phase therefore apply to the specific recommendations for the acute phase in order to relieve the inflamed colon. However, it remains important to have the most varied diet possible, despite the fear of symptoms, in order to avoid nutritional deficiencies.
What to eat in ulcerative colitis: foods and recipes
Eating with chronic bowel inflammation: Here you will find recipes and food lists suitable for the resting phase, as well as information and tips for both phases for download.
- Generally well tolerated: Toast, mixed bread, light rolls, fine seedless bread, rusks; oats, millet, wheat, barley, quinoa, amaranth; Boiled potatoes, rice, pasta, semolina
- More often intolerable/not recommended: Whole grain bread, pre-baked rolls, pumpernickel, very fresh bread or pastries; ready-to-use muesli mixes; Processed potato products (fries, croquettes, potato salad)