Diverticulitis can happen to anyone and is most common in people over 40 who have a low fiber diet leading to constipation and increased pressure on the digestive tract.
Diverticulitis is a condition that occurs in the digestive tract when pouches form in the wall of the colon and these get inflamed or infected. This can result in painful symptoms such as stomach pain, bloating, constipation or diarrhoea and even fever, chills, nausea and vomiting.
This condition most usually occurs due to a lack of fibre in the diet, which can help create the pouches, and build up of bad bacteria which can then cause the inflammation.
Diverticulitis is often treated with antibiotics, however an antibiotic taken to kill bad bacteria will unfortunately also kill off all the good bacteria. Therefore, a good quality probiotic should be taken at the same time as an antibiotic, to replace those good bacteria we need so much to maintain balanced intestinal flora and good gut health.
Nutrition plays an important role in the prevention of Diverticulitis, and in the long term to avoid recurrence of this condition you can increase the amount of fibre in the diet by eating high fibre foods such as beans, pulses, legumes, wholegrains, nuts, fresh fruits & vegetables, and avoid low fibre foods such as refined white bread, canned or cooked fruits & vegies, and dairy products.
Also drink plenty of fluids, exercise and take a good quality probiotic with nutritional content. The probiotic may assist to maintain a healthy digestive tract replacing the good bacteria so those bad bacteria can’t gain control again and cause the infection to reoccur.
Diverticulitis of the digestive tract
The symptoms are often felt on the left side as this is the curved part of the large intestine closest to the rectum where the condition usually occurs. The diverticulum become inflamed and cause the diverticulitis. For severe or persistant symptoms seek medical advice.
Probiotics and Diverticulitis
Probiotic strains such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum, Saccharomyces boulardii, and bifidobacteria may be the best probiotics for diverticulitis as they may assist to maintain the health of the intestines. In one study, people who had diverticulitis were more likely to remain symptom-free after 1 year when they were treated with Lactobacillus casei and mesalazine.
Fermented wholefoods which are high in fibre such as beans, lentils, wheat grain, flaxseed adds nutritional value at a cellular level.
For severe or persistent symptoms seek medical advice.
References: Narula N, Marshall JK. Role of probiotics in management of diverticular disease. J Gastroenterol Hepatol . 2010;25(12):1827-30
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. These products are not to be used in place of medical advice.
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