Are you approaching ostomy surgery, but still have questions and reservations about what eating will be like afterward?
You’re not alone in this regard. Dietary considerations are among the chief concerns for new ostomates. That's because you must exercise more caution, particularly after the procedure when your digestive system has been through so much.
Like any other surgical procedure, no two people recover the same way. So, while we can’t make guarantees or pronounce dietary dogmas in an online article, we can offer a few guidelines.
Practice Gradualism as You Recover
The post-procedure phase is marked with lots of trial and error for many patients. You’ll want to make a dietary diary to see what digests well compared to foods that irritate your stomach and stoma. This won’t happen overnight, so prepare to spend some time weeding out the problem foods. Above all else, make your initial recovery meals small, and simple, and don’t try too many high-fiber items all at once.
This is good advice for folks of all stripes since a lack of proper hydration can wreak havoc on our digestive systems. Many problems pertaining to hunger can be addressed by raising fluid levels. You may be able to drink coffee and tea after your surgery but temper it in favor of greater water intake.
Eat Slowly & Chew All The Way
Much of the trouble with gas stems from eating too quickly, and if you don’t devote enough time to chew your food, it will be harder to process. You can avoid inhaling excessive air and incurring gas by pacing yourself with smaller meals.
Exercise Caution with Alcohol & Carbonated Beverages
These drinks aren’t always forbidden for every patient, so you’ll want to check with your doctor. If you experiment with beer or anything carbonated, go very slow with it to avoid gas, bloating, and other side effects. This is probably not something to try during the initial weeks after recovery.
Beware Some of the Common “Problem” Foods
There are certain items that tend to cause problems for almost all ostomates. These are the foods that have a reputation for causing gas and other digestive difficulties.
Some of the most common offenders for ostomates are nuts, seeds, popcorn, dried fruit, mushrooms, spicy foods, raw veggies like cauliflower, onions, garlic, baked beans, and processed foods.
We hope these general rules help you gain a clearer perspective on dieting after ostomy surgery. As always, consult your physician and nutritionist for more personalized advice.
Fortis Medical Products, makers of the effective Entrust line of ostomy supplies, wishes you a safe and effective ostomy procedure. Our mission is to help patients manage their lives better after ileostomy and colostomy surgery with reliable pouches, wafers, and other important accessories. You can learn more about what we do by calling us at 855-550-2600.