Our doctor may have advised you to follow a certain diet. For your convenience, we have provided links that can help guide you through the wide variety of choices available while still adhering to the recommendations of your physician(s).
What Can Help Acid Reflux?
One thing you can do to reduce your risk for heartburn and acid reflux disease is to eat low-fat, high-protein meals. Also, eat smaller meals more frequently. It may also help to avoid certain beverages and foods.
Avoid beverages that seem to trigger heartburn or make it worse, such as:
- Coffee or tea (both regular and decaffeinated)
- Other beverages that contain caffeine
- Carbonated beverages
Avoid foods that seem to trigger your heartburn or make it worse, such as:
- Citrus fruits, such as oranges and lemons
- Tomatoes and products that contain tomatoes, such as tomato sauce and salsa
- Mint or peppermint
- Fatty or spicy foods, such as chili or curry
- Onions and garlic
Low-Residue Diet: Foods to Enjoy
Eating a low-residue/low-fiber diet goes against what nutritionists tout as a healthy way to eat because it severely limits fiber intake and other important nutrients. A low-residue/low-fiber diet usually stays away from grainy, nutty foods that are loaded with fiber.
Here are foods you can eat if you are on a low-residue diet:
- Refined or enriched white breads and plain crackers, such as saltines or Melba toast (no seeds)
- Cooked cereals, such as farina, cream of wheat, and grits
- Cold cereals, such as puffed rice and corn flakes
- White rice, noodles, and refined pasta
Fruits and Vegetables
The skin and seeds of many fruits and vegetables are loaded with fiber, so peeling skin and avoiding seeds is part of a low-residue diet.
The following vegetables can be eaten on a low-residue diet:
- Well cooked fresh vegetables or canned vegetables without seeds, such as asparagus tips, beets, green beans, carrots, mushrooms, spinach, squash (no seeds), and pumpkin
- Cooked potatoes without skin
- Tomato sauce (no seeds)
- Ripe bananas
- Soft cantaloupe
- Canned or cooked fruits without seeds or skin, such as applesauce or canned pears
- Milk and Dairy
- Milk products are OK to eat, in moderation. Milk does not contain fiber, but it may trigger symptoms such as diarrhea and cramping for some people with lactose intolerance. As an alternative, using lactase supplements or eating lactose-free products may be options.
Meats and Protein
You can enjoy most meats, including beef, lamb, chicken, fish (no bones), and pork, as long as they are lean, tender, and soft. Eggs are also OK to eat.
Fats, Sauces, and Condiments are fine to eat on a low-residue diet:
- Margarine, butter, and oils
- Mayonnaise and ketchup
- Sour cream
- Smooth sauces and salad dressing
- Soy sauce
- Clear jelly, honey, and syrup
- Sweets and Snacks
- You can still satisfy your sweet tooth on a low-residue diet.
The following desserts and snacks are OK to eat, in moderation
- Plain cakes and cookies
- Gelatin, plain puddings, custard, and sherbet
- Ice cream and popsicles
- Hard candy
- Vanilla wafers
Low-Residue Diet: Foods to Avoid While on a low-residue diet, these foods or drinks are generally avoided:
- Seeds, nuts, or coconut, including those found in bread, cereal, desserts, and candy
- Whole-grain products, including whole-grain breads, cereals, crackers, pasta, rice, and kasha
- Raw or dried fruits, such as prunes, berries, raisins, figs, and pineapple
- Most raw vegetables
- Certain cooked vegetables, including peas, broccoli, winter squash, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, corn (and cornbread), onions, cauliflower, potatoes with skin, and baked beans Beans, lentils, or tofu
- Tough meats with gristle and smoked or cured deli meats
- Cheese with seeds, nuts, or fruit
- Peanut butter, jam, marmalade, or preserves
- Pickles, olives, relish, sauerkraut, and horseradish
- Fruit juices with pulp or seeds, prune juice, or pear nectar
Which foods cause gas?
Most foods that contain carbohydrates cause gas. By contrast, fats and proteins cause little gas.
- Beans contain large amounts of this. Smaller amounts are found in vegetables like cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, and also in whole grains.
- Milk and milk products such as cheese, ice cream, along with processed foods such as bread, cereal, and salad dressing contain lactose.
- Fructose is found in onions, artichokes, pears, and wheat
- This sugar is found naturally in fruits, including apples, pears, peaches, and prunes.
- Starches, such as, potatoes, corn, pasta and wheat, produce gas as they are broken down in the large colon. Rice is the only starch that does not produce gas.
- There are two types of fiber which are soluble and insoluble.
- Soluble fiber breaks down in the large colon and causes gas. Soluble fiber is found in oat bran, beans, peas, and most fruits.
Insoluble fiber passes essentially unchanged through the intestines and produces little gas.