Diet for hemorrhoids is aimed at preventing constipation by adding to the bulk and softness of stools so that they are passed easily. With the help of some food items you can control the inflammation, itching, pain and bleeding from hemorrhoids. Certain foods need to be avoided to stop the symptoms from getting worse.
Diet for Hemorrhoids
Fiber adds bulk to the stools and retains the moisture in them, thus speeding up their movement in the intestines and making them easy to excrete from the body. Thus, constipation is prevented. Not only that, there is also less straining while passing stools. These things prevent the hemorrhoids from getting worse and may even lead to their resolution eventually.
Irritation, swelling and bleeding from hemorrhoids is reduced with a diet high in fiber. Moreover, with this type of diet you have the added benefit that it prevents hemorrhoids from developing in the future. So it is worthwhile continuing with a fiber-rich diet even after your hemorrhoids stop troubling you. Remember, a diet high in fiber has multiple other benefits like prevention of high cholesterol, diverticulitis, and colon cancer.
Typically, you need about 25-35 grams of fiber per day. Foods rich in fiber include vegetables like potatoes, beans, legumes, turnips, cucumber, carrots, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, spinach, lettuce and olives; fruits like apples, grapes, apricots, raspberries, tangerines and prunes; and whole-grain foods like whole-wheat breads, bran cereals, oatmeal, brown rice and whole-wheat pasta. Fiber supplements are also available.
Probiotics are bacteria that colonize one’s bowel and are good for one’s health. Probiotics like bifidus and lactobacillus can help in the treatment and prevention of hemorrhoids. They are to be found in some food items and also can be had as supplements. Foods containing probiotics are milk, yogurt and certain soy beverages. It is better to try to get these probiotics through food than supplements.
Fruits and Vegetables
In addition to fiber, vegetables and fruits also contain bioflavonoids (or flavonoids), which help in relieving the bleeding, itching and such other symptoms occurring with hemorrhoids.
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Cherries, blueberries and blackberries contain proanthocyanidins and anthocyanins, which help to reduce the hemorrhoidal swelling and pain. They do this by increasing the tone and strengthening the veins of the hemorrhoids. Drink 1-2 glasses of their juice daily.
Drinking the juice of currants may also help because they contain vitamin C, rutin and some minerals that help in the clearing of hemorrhoids. They also have a fatty acid that increases the production of prostaglandins in the body, which helps relieve the pain associated with hemorrhoids.
Drink plenty of fluids, particularly water, throughout the day. You need to consume around 6-10 glasses of water daily, so that the stools do not become hard and dry.
If the stools are not soft, it is difficult for them to pass through the intestine and be excreted, so the symptoms of hemorrhoids are worsened as you tend to strain while passing the stools.
Foods to Avoid
It is best to avoid beverages like coffee, soft drinks and alcohol, and spicy food as they can cause the hemorrhoids to swell. Highly fatty foods like fried food, high-fat dairy products and red meat can aggravate symptoms, so they need to be avoided.