Can we eat salad? Need ideas!

Past Member
Dec 28, 2010 5:25 pm

My stoma nurse said we can't eat anything raw, nuts, seeds, lettuce, tomatoes, or fruit, only bananas...
I've just read on a post that someone ate a salad sandwich. I would love to eat salad.


Dec 28, 2010 5:50 pm

I have a transverse colostomy and eat a salad that includes nuts on it almost every day. I haven't had any issues. I eat fruit with seeds too, mostly strawberries.

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Dec 28, 2010 5:52 pm

Hi, I had surgery in May 2010. I have recently started eating lettuce, onion, and peppers and had no problems. I believe it's just a case of trying certain foods and making sure you chew food properly. xx

Dec 28, 2010 5:55 pm

Hi Maggie33 ~ Whenever someone gives me a rule, I always like to understand the "WHY?" behind that rule, and so you may want to ask your stoma nurse the reason(s) for her "No Raw Rule". As for me, I have been on a mostly raw diet for almost 2 years after studying about the damaging effect heat has on many nutrients. I feel great and have absolutely no problems with blockages.

Dec 28, 2010 5:58 pm

You can absolutely eat salad! It was, and still is, one of my greatest food-related pleasures after having my ostomy surgery. Prior to that, I could never eat salad, and if I tried to, there would be my undigested salad floating in the toilet shortly thereafter when I went to the bathroom. (Sorry to be so graphic). Just take it slow, chew carefully, and drink plenty of fluids to help wash it down. I even eat popcorn, but the same rules apply...moderation, chew, chew, chew, and lots of fluids. Buon appetito!

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Past Member
Dec 28, 2010 6:32 pm

I believe that most blockages occur with people who have had several surgeries on their colon, so they may have to limit the amount of fibrous foods (salad, nuts, raw vegetables) they eat.

Personally, I eat everything an ileostomate apparently shouldn't, including salads, nuts, seeds, and popcorn. I don't chew my food any more than normal, don't drink a lot of fluids, and have not suffered any ill effects since my surgery in November 2008 (this was also my first and only surgery).

Try a small salad and see how you go; it's all just trial and error. I got the go-ahead from my surgeon while in the hospital to eat whatever and whenever I wanted and have done exactly that. I am healthier (and heavier!) than I have ever been, even before I developed Crohn's disease 20 years ago.

Eat, drink, and be merry!
Jo x

Past Member
Dec 28, 2010 8:12 pm

Wow, thanks everyone. I'm going shopping in the morning and will buy salad stuff. I will try a little and see how I go on.
Oh, my stoma nurse said I can't eat anything raw because my body can't digest it now and it will cause blockages.
Forgot to ask about mushrooms. She said no to them also.

PS: I've had all my colon taken out. I have an ileostomy.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Dec 28, 2010 9:10 pm
Rubbish, where does she get all that from? We are all different, so a bit of trial and error will be required - maybe keep a food diary of what happens when you introduce something new, but as everybody has said, what she has told you isn't really the case at all ..... nbspWhen I am not feeling nauseous (which at the moment is just about 24/7!) I can eat virtually anything - the more fibrous it is, the thicker my output .... but if I eat it at dinner nowadays it pops my bag off overnight, so things are changing with me.

But when I am 'well' (which is never really, but I do/did have better days when I can feel normal-ish ...) I start the day with a huge bowl full of homemade sugar-free granola with oats, rye, wheat germ, raisins, figs, apricots, dried blueberries and cranberries, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, linseeds, and a portion of fresh fruit - it really fills me up ....

As for salad, I prefer salad to most veggies anyway, so I would have that in preference to veg for a meal (cauliflower though thickens things up loads). Lettuce tends to come through undigested but has never blocked me up (actually the only thing that has is when I overdosed on lots of nuts and raisins, forgetting about the ileo until it was too late ...!)

I am a bit like Jo - don't chew anymore than normal really, except maybe my breakfast subconsciously - and mushrooms, I put into everything!

Good luck with tomorrow's salad!

Rach xxx
Past Member
Dec 28, 2010 9:22 pm

Aw, thanks Rach. I'm going to show my stoma nurse these answers on Thursday.
I will let you know how I get on.

Can't believe you eat nuts and mushrooms. Yummy, I'm looking forward to trying them too.
Hope you feel better soon. It's awful to be in pain day in and day out. Big (((((((((((hug)))))))))).

Dec 28, 2010 11:16 pm

I don't eat much lettuce, but when I want a salad, I buy the chopped head lettuce for tacos. It satisfies my craving and when I chew it well, it doesn't seem to cause problems. I did notice that tomatoes and mushrooms don't digest well, but I eat them in moderation...just hate to give them up. I agree it is trial and error when it comes to what is going to bother each of us. There will probably be something that you will have to give up eating, but you won't know until you try it...gummy bears is one thing that I found didn't digest very well... Bon Appétit

Dec 28, 2010 11:36 pm

My husband had a total colectomy because of ulcerative colitis two years ago, and he eats salad rather often. Everyone's body is different, and we all react to food in different ways, but I don't think I've ever met an ostomate who literally cannot eat a salad with their dinner. Naturally, take it slow anytime you introduce a new food, and chew very well!

Dec 29, 2010 12:28 am

"I've had all my colon taken out. I have an ileostomy" (I have as well for 5 years now.)

I eat nuts, popcorn, mushrooms. I go lightly on the salads because it gasses me up. As for mushrooms, "I'm not sure they even slow down as they go through" Ha! I really think the key is CHEW, CHEW, CHEW and drink plenty of liquids (this is very important). Thank God I've been fortunate in 5 years I've had no blockages. ENJOY food and remember try new things slowly and in moderation.

Happy New Year to all

Dec 29, 2010 2:12 am

Yes, I would have to agree. Veggies mean lots of gas for me. Too much fiber, lots of gas. My gastroenterologist gave me a list of foods that are way gassy and said to eat one thing at a time to see what bothers me. And if it doesn't, then happy days. And since I quit eating veggies, I really don't have the gas or bloating they caused.

Dec 29, 2010 7:36 am

Hi Maggie, ileostomate of 34 years here....I eat lots of salads and raw veggies but I just chew it all very, very well. I eat nuts and popcorn and pretty much everything I was long ago told I shouldn't, lol, and have few problems. Everyone is different, hun. You are likely to have more gas or possibly a little problem with things not wanting to pass through if you're not careful, if you experiment, just take it easy. Try things in small portions and really chew them well if you do. Personally, I seem to have more problems if I eat large portions of mashed potatoes or a ton of mushrooms. Wow, tummy ache for some time, lol....but being the Doe that I am, I do it again and again. If you're really wanting a salad, try a teeny bit at first but be careful.

Dec 29, 2010 7:46 am

Hi, I also agree with everyone that you could try things slowly and see how you go. I had colon cancer, which is why I had most of my colon removed, and have recently been changing my diet to include a lot of anti-cancer foods. This includes lots of vegetables and fruit. I had raspberries yesterday and was okay with them. I think it is important to stay healthy and eat healthy foods, so I'm glad you got such a positive response here and good advice. Good luck.

Dec 29, 2010 7:53 am
You are right, Margie, and everyone needs the nutrition and antioxidants big time....and then of course there is one of the best kitchen friends we all can possibly have.......the juicer!!  ...mix the potent wonderful veggies and fruits together and cheers!!
Dec 29, 2010 9:17 am

Hey Maggie, I eat everything as well and no colon. Permanent ileostomy as well. I do get a few blockages, but I don't chew enough. I guess I don't eat many nuts anyway. I also drink alcohol and anything in between. I think my obstructions are from scar tissue problems or I look at food like right now. I want a peach. I just bought it. It's worth a little pain or not. Cool mare - mooza.

Past Member
Dec 29, 2010 9:31 am

I've been wondering about lettuce, not had it in nearly 5 years, and eat other salad foods including radish and spring onions. We grow our own veg in a small way, so feel obliged to eat them too!
The only thing I've had a blockage with is a slice of mushroom, which became stuck for several hours. Scary! Now I grate them and have no more trouble. If you eat beetroot, don't worry that you are bleeding to death. It's just the color going through, very quickly too!!
A Happy New Year to you all. May you have a good and healthy 2011, and a big thank you for such wonderful friends on this site.

Dec 29, 2010 10:21 am
Regarding the mushrooms  YES, grating is a super idea!!    In fact, I forgot to mention in my post that the only way I can now eat mushrooms is if I chop them into TEENY of my favorite things to eat lately is homemade mushroom soup, a recipe from one of my best friends. I am addicted to mushroom soup lol...and I can eat bowl after bowl as long as the mushrooms are TINY bits....then no trouble at all.
Past Member
Dec 29, 2010 1:34 pm

Thank you everyone, bless you bes0642, well done on no blockages.
I'm trying new things today, I've been shopping and I'm having a small chicken salad for my tea.
So thank you again everyone, I really appreciate all the advice from you. Keep well. Maggie.

Past Member
Dec 30, 2010 12:50 am

Lies!! Eat whatever you want!! When I had the bag, I would eat nuts, popcorn, salads, whatever I wanted.
I now have a continent ileostomy, so I can't eat lettuce because it will stick to the tube I use to catheterize my pouch, but when you have an end ileostomy, that is not a problem. The problem will happen when you don't chew your food well. If you are worried about food getting caught up, just don't eat a huge quantity, chew it well, and drink something like grape juice or prune juice to loosen up the stool.

Dec 30, 2010 1:09 am

Just chew it thoroughly. I eat anything except broccoli or cauliflower because I hate it! E.g. for nuts, make it into peanut butter before you swallow and good luck!

Past Member
Dec 30, 2010 3:44 am

I do not eat salad or fruit on an empty stomach; I always eat a couple of bites of something else first. This has worked for me for 6 years.....hope this helps you too!! I eat nuts on an empty stomach, not a lot, but I need the protein.

Dec 30, 2010 4:10 am

I've had my ostomy for more than 45 years, way before they ever had "stoma nurses".

My doctor at the time told me to try different foods to see how they agree with me. So that's what I've been doing for all these years. I've found that some (raw) foods agree with me, and others don't. I can't eat raw carrots or celery, but I can eat lettuce, tomato, cucumbers, and onions. I often have salad, but I am careful not to have it on an empty stomach (or I get the "runs") and I don't have a lot of it too late at night. As for nuts, some are better than others. I don't have a problem with cashews, but sometimes other nuts cause problems so I avoid them. I can eat cooked cabbage that's shredded and coleslaw, but not raw cabbage in salads. I can't digest raw or cooked whole leaf spinach, but chopped spinach isn't a problem. As time has gone by, I've developed some problems digesting foods I used to be able to eat. So the best advice I can give you is to try small amounts of new foods to determine what works for you.

Write if you have any other questions.

Dec 30, 2010 7:03 am

There is really only 1 rule with an ileostomy. Trial and error. Try and eat everything and you will work out pretty quickly what you can and can't eat. I shouldn't eat peanuts but I do. They block me big time. Just as it's been said in the posts, lotsa water. You are meant to have a better lease of life after surgery, not be bound to the whims of some outrageous diet.

Dec 30, 2010 7:26 am
Said quite perfectly, Steve!
Past Member
Dec 31, 2010 3:11 pm

Thanks everyone, I had a beautiful salad yesterday and again today, no problems whatsoever. I'm so pleased.
But it just goes to show, if it wasn't for this forum, I would never have tried. As my stoma nurse said no to all raw foods, I'm going to try a little handful of nuts today and see if that's okay.
Thank you everyone. I'm so happy. I love salad. Maggie.

Dec 31, 2010 3:27 pm

The lesson here is that ostomates know it all.... Because we live it on a daily basis.......... While doctors think they know it all, they don't, and WOCNs try and are our best advocates in our journey, they too don't know it all. And lastly, it is us........all of us on this forum where all the answers you could ever hope for are......... There is more absolute truths on here than you can ever find from any medical person..... PERIOD

Past Member
Dec 31, 2010 4:45 pm

Your right, thank you.

Dec 31, 2010 8:12 pm
BRAVO!!!!  SO true!!!  .....and I have 34 years of having an ostomy to slam my hand down on the table and agree with Michael 100%  ...and I have had a few doctors (and trust me I've seen MANY doctors in my day) who have actually told me this same that is something I personally doubt many doctors will do, admit to their lack of personal knowledge on so many of our issues, in fact one of my Marshfield Doctors said he has much to learn from his Ostomate Patients.