Eating Strawberries with an Ileostomy: Safe or Not?

Mar 20, 2024 2:22 pm

I've had my ileostomy for eight months now. The question is, can I eat fresh strawberries with no problems?

Mar 20, 2024 3:23 pm

That's for you to find out as everyone is different, but I'd say you're okay. Just don't eat a whole carton of them at once.

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Mar 20, 2024 3:25 pm

I would say yes, but we are all different. Try it and see how you go. Let us know the outcome. Regards, Iggie

Mar 20, 2024 3:45 pm

I can, but can't say if you can just try a few and see how it goes.

Morning glory
Mar 20, 2024 4:09 pm

Eat a few and see. Remember to chew well.

Living with Your Ostomy | Hollister
Mar 20, 2024 5:41 pm

I can't (yet) unless I put that fresh strawberry in a blender. Like others have said, everyone is different when it comes to foods after these surgeries.

Mar 21, 2024 3:22 pm

Good advice from all. I eat them with no problem; however, I remember when my hubby had diverticulitis, the docs warned against them because of the seeds. I sometimes wonder about bananas - even though they give me no problem, sometimes I notice tiny black specks (seeds) from them in my drink, even after they have been in the blender. Jb

Mar 22, 2024 12:10 am

I don't eat them, but I have never tried them since my surgery because of the seeds. I don't eat things like grapes because of the skins and other berries because of the seeds. I have read that with an ileostomy, you need to avoid skins and seeds of fruits and veggies. I guess you could do as others here said and try a small amount and see. Since I recently had a blockage, I am far more careful about what I eat. Having a blockage is really, really not fun. I landed myself in the hospital, and that was not fun at all.


Mar 22, 2024 2:56 pm
Reply to infinitycastle52777

Interesting… your comment caused me to “Google” small intestine diverticula. I was under the impression only the colon (large intestine) was involved - good thing I never went to medical school!!! 🤔😜 Thanks! I read further info where they claim fiber can prevent it… I am sooo confused about the fiber thing 🤔 - some claim good, some claim not so much….

How common is small bowel diverticulosis?
These small-bowel diverticula occur in up to 5% of the general population, and can arise in the jejunum (80%), ileum (15%), or both (5%). They are usually multiple, and their sizes range from only a few millimeters in diameter to 10 cm in length.

Mar 22, 2024 6:11 pm

Hi, I have found that the small seeds on the outside do not digest in what remains of my digestive system. I've had a problem once where I believe that a seed got under the edge of the pouch, where it gave me a similar problem as you get with a piece of grit in your shoe. We are all different; give it a try. Elwick

Mysterious Mose
Mar 22, 2024 6:52 pm

Personally, I do not have a problem with my ileo and strawberries. I can eat them fresh, but I am not fond of commercial strawberries that way. I freeze them and use them in my morning smoothie. So, they are generally processed.

Mar 22, 2024 8:54 pm

I became an ostomate (ileostomy) after a surgeon suddenly discovered an orange-sized cyst on the outside of my colon, not visible in a colonoscopy per the surgeon because it was on the outside of my colon, not the interior.
Amazingly, around 10 years ago, I was having severe discomfort when sleeping on my right side. Went to my doc and was told it was a spur on my spine. I was sure the doc was wrong and should have sought another opinion but did not. After a while, this discomfort went away, and I was again able to sleep on my right side.
Apparently, this cyst grew (for years) and then got infected, causing severe pain and resulting in emergency surgery. So, now wondering if eating strawberries, tomatoes, etc., might “build up” over time. Even though I eat anything I want with no problems (pain), could this be a mistake? 🤔 And…is the use of psyllium fiber helping to keep these seeds moving along? I certainly hope so. jb

Per Google
What causes diverticulosis and diverticulitis?
Researchers aren't sure what causes diverticulosis and diverticulitis. They think certain factors may play a role in causing or increasing the risk for these conditions, including:

Your genetics. Certain genes may make some people more likely to develop the conditions.
Lifestyle factors such as: Diets low in fiber and high in red meat
Lack of physical activity
Taking certain medicines, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and steroids
Having obesity

May 16, 2024 11:30 am

As everyone says, it is different for everybody, but I have to avoid them. About four weeks after my ileostomy was created, I had a small sliver of strawberry pie. There weren't very many pieces of strawberries in it as it was more glaze and crust, but three or four days later, I was still seeing seeds come out in my output. You just have to experiment with foods carefully and see what works for you. For instance, I also cannot eat any sort of shredded potatoes. I can eat mashed potatoes or even some fried potatoes if they're fried soft, but if I eat shredded potatoes or certain kinds of hash browns, I will see the pieces of potato coming out for several days, and it's kind of scary. The same goes for brown rice, which I can't eat at all. It's a matter of trial and error, but just be careful and don't eat too much of anything that you might be questioning.

Mysterious Mose
May 16, 2024 6:11 pm
Reply to Autiej

You're going to see seeds from strawberries in the bag. There is nothing wrong with that. Where things go wrong is when many seeds gang up and block the output from the stoma. I have never had that happen to me with seeded fruit, and I eat a lot of it. And I get seeds in my bag, of course. The only time I got myself in trouble with a blockage was when I added frozen pineapple to my morning smoothies. Then I was saved by the magic of apple juice and a 3-mile walk. :-)

As you say, the important thing is moderation to see what you can tolerate. My diet would give fits to a lot of people here. I am one of the lucky ones. I may not have a colon, but I can still eat most everything I like. Except most nuts that haven't been crushed or slivered.


May 21, 2024 10:03 pm

Just to add my two cents... I eat fresh strawberries almost every day without any problems.