Low residue diet

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A low residue diet is a diet designed to reduce the frequency and volume of stools while prolonging intestinal transit time. It is similar to a low-fiber diet, but typically includes restrictions on foods that increase bowel activity,[1] such as milk, milk products, and prune juice.[2] A low residue diet typically contains less than 7–10 grams of fiber per day.[3] Long term use of this diet, with its emphasis on processed foods and reduced intake of fruits and vegetables, may not provide required amounts of nutrients including potassium, vitamin C, calcium, and folic acidTemplate:Medical citation needed.

New evidence tends to run counter to the well-established myth that a low residue diet is beneficial. A Mayo Clinic review from 2011 finds no evidence for the superiority of low residue diets in treating diverticular disease and in fact tends to show that a high-fiber diet can prevent diverticular disease.[4] A systematic review published in 2012 found no high quality studies, but found that some studies and guidelines favor a high-fiber diet for the treatment of symptomatic disease.[5]

General guidelines

Foods that are included

  • White bread, refined pastas and cereals, and white rice[1]
  • Limited servings of canned or well-cooked vegetables that do not include skins[2]
  • Moderate fresh fruits without peels or seeds, certain canned or well-cooked fruitsTemplate:Medical citation needed
  • Tender, ground, and well cooked meat, fish, eggs, and poultry[2]
  • Milk and yogurt (usually limited to two cups per day), mild cheese Template:Medical citation needed, ricotta, cottage cheese[1]
  • Butter,[1] mayonnaise,[1] vegetable oils,[1] margarine,[1] plain gravies and dressingsTemplate:Medical citation needed
  • Broth and strained soups from allowed foods[1]
  • Pulp-free, strained, or clear juices[1]

Foods to avoid

Conditions that may require a low residue diet

See also


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 Mayo Clinic. "Low-fiber diet". August 15, 2009; retrieved July 5, 2012.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. "Low-residue/Low-fiber Diet". Retrieved December 16, 2011.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 The Children's Hospital at Westmead. "Low residue diet". August 18, 2000. Retrieved May 9, 2011.
  4. Tarleton, S; Dibaise, JK (2011). "Low-residue diet in diverticular disease: Putting an end to a myth". Nutrition in clinical practice : official publication of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition. 26 (2): 137–42. doi:10.1177/0884533611399774. PMID 21447765.
  5. Ünlü, C; Daniels, L; Vrouenraets, BC; Boermeester, MA (2012). "A systematic review of high-fibre dietary therapy in diverticular disease". International journal of colorectal disease. 27 (4): 419–27. doi:10.1007/s00384-011-1308-3. PMC 3308000. PMID 21922199.
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