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The nutritional intake during the treatment and post-c. diff. infection can be challenging. The clear liquid diet is recommended for three days, any prolonged use of this diet will result in poor nutrition.
There are certain food and food groups that a patient may consider avoiding during this and many gastrointestinal infections/diagnosis . No two bodies are created nor respond alike making diets a very individualized program.
Whole milk and milk products have a tendency to cause additional G.I. upset and patients being treated for a C. diff. infection have shared their experiences of how consuming whole milk and milk products, during a C. difficile infection, have caused symptoms similar to those of a lactose intolerance.
Avoiding Lactose dairy products and utilizing a whole milk substitute (e.g., Soy milk, Rice Milk, Almond Milk, etc.) may be more tolerable at this time.
Avoid Greasy foods and foods high in fat content are difficult to digest and may cause additional diarrhea episodes. When cooking it is recommended to use spray oils on cookware.
Additional foods that may cause additional abdominal/intestinal bloating and discomfort such as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, whole grain breads, onions, beans, nuts, seeds. The toxins in the gastrointestinal tract after eating raw vegetables, and raw fruits produce bloating and by cooking the vegetables and fruits instead of eating them raw will reduce the bloating effects.
Avoid Fat free foods (i.e., Olestra or Olean) have shown to cause diarrhea episodes and increased bloating. Avoid Spicy foods as they will elevate the symptoms during a
C. difficile infection.
Avoiding large amounts of caffeine is suggested as caffeine may irritate the gastrointestinal system. Caffeine can also have a diuretic effect creating a fluid shift promoting diarrhea episodes by pulling fluid from the tissue into the intestinal track.
A referral from a Primary Physician, Gastroenterologist, or Endocrinologist for a Dietary Consult from a Registered Dietitian (RD) is a positive step in obtaining a healthy diet that works for your body while combating a C. difficile infection, along with any confirmed diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, Celiac disease, or IBS.