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How to live without favorite foods

Posted by Gemd, on Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:50 pm

Ok so I will live without favorite foods but ugh. I get proctolectomy tomorrow (So no colon, no rectum, I get an ileostomy bag) and many say you can't eat certain foods. Problem is they're healthy healing cancer fighting foods and my favorite foods. Life without nuts, beans, spice (omg the spicier the better I say, at least with a colon intact), salad, greens, peels (like roasted potato with peel) or stuff like onion, cilantro, chunky salsa, peppers, apples. Basically my cancer fighting diet was beans and lentils, seeds and nuts, salads, greens, spicy food, chunky stuff (like cilantro and onion). Boo. I don't want to lose weight after surgery but a diet similar to the chemotherapy diet I was on for a bit...soft carrot, boiled chicken, plain rice, toast, mashed potato...ugh. I'm thin and lost 10 lbs with that food. Oh well...sorry...i am just ranting and complaining. See y'all in about a week once i am back to humanity after surgery 

Reply by Poobag17, on Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:56 pm

Everyone is different, and everyone cnabe different, meaning I used to not be able to eat dense healthy veges etc, and now I can.  You can play around alot with gut Flora, I encourage you to look into it.  See a naturopath.  Made a huge difference with my digestive tolerance given the stuff he had me on.  Biggest difference in 20 years!  Nuts, seeds, POPCORN!!!  You name it.  So much as everyone is different, you can make changes to be different too.  You will be great, be positive, it will suck for moments at a time, but stay focused, and remember they're just moments along the way, not long term.

Reply by Puppyluv56, on Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:59 pm


good luck with your surgery! I have a colostomy so my diet is not restricted at all but just know what causes gas and what doesn’t. Everyone is different so all I can say is you will have to try small amounts of your favorite foods to see how your new buddy responds to it! Keep us posted on how you are doing! We care!


Reply by NJ Bain, on Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:18 pm


  As all have said, try small portions first.  And as an ileostomate, the best advice is to CHEW, CHEW, CHEW.  It's not that you can't have your favorite foods, it's just immediately after surgery it's not a great idea and as everyone has said, you have to see how your body reacts to them in moderation.

  With nuts, I suggest chewing them until there aren't any crunchy bits left before you swallow.  I learned that one the hard way.  Beans and lentils I would suggest taking a GasX or beano before eating and still, chew them up good.  Gas pains from obstructions suck.



Reply by dadnabbit, on Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:01 pm

Gmed,  I have NO large intestine left intact and an illeostomy for four years now.  I eat EVERYTHING you mentioned, but as Bain said CHEW, CHEW, CHEW.  Skins and peels can be tricky until excessive chewing is habit, and nuts and seeds should be paste before swallowing, as he mentioned.  The chunky stuff you mentioned like salsa, onions, cilantro, as well as peppers, garlic, mushrooms and the like, I dice REALLY SMALL in order to partake of the vitamins and flavor without running the risk. I eat raw apples frequently, but I DO peel them, mostly because I don't fell as if the extra work of the extra chewing that is necessary is worth the effort LOL.  But again, CHEW and CHEW some more.  Salad greens seem to pass very quickly and are very watery, so you'll want to be aware as to emptying your pouch.  Spicy has NEVER been an issue, but even before surgery I NEVER had heartburn, I couldn't even tell you what that feels like, so I'm not sure if spices will bother you for some reason, but they don't bother me at all.  I agree, the spicier the better.  Be kind to yourself, you CAN enjoy the foods you like, but also be aware and cautious, especially until your newly hooked up insides have a chance to heal.  The one item that almost everyone seems to have difficulty with is popcorn, although I have continued to eat my white cheddar smartfood, it is not something I eat all that often.  Be aware ALWAYS of your diet, so that you don't overload yourself at any one time with too much of any POSSIBLE issue causing items at one time.   And ALWAYS drink plenty of fluids when you eat, when you walk, when you sit, when you exercise, when get the message. LOL Good Luck with your surgery.


Reply by Cass, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 1:03 am

Hi there! I had a proctocolectomy also! Ive never had an issue with eat anything. Yes nuts you have to chew very well. And i personally dont like eat bananas only because I just dont like the way comes out. Sorry tmi.  But I eat everything I want to eat with no issies. So dont rule anything out just yet. See how it goes you may be just fine and able to eat all the foods you love. Take it slow but give a try. Good luck with the surgery! 

Reply by Sasquatch, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:49 am

Don't be afraid to try going back to your favorites, just do it in moderation.  I can tolerate almost anything, except nuts, and even then I do OK if I don;t have too many of them.  Beans and spicy food I've never had too much trouble with, but for whatever reason, jalepenos turn my output to staight water.  You just have to see how your digestive system processes things, slow and easy is the way to do it.

Reply by panther, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:48 am

Eat whatever you like just in small portions at first and see how you get on. I'm told I have a cast iron stomach I can and do eat anything 

Reply by freedancer, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:10 am

Hi, after my initial surgery in July 2017, I could barely eat anything.  I was in severe pain for 7 months and lived on soup and Ramin.  Finely, I went back to the ER for the umpteenth time and a CAT scan showed a serious issue.  I was rushed back into surgery and had to have everything re-done.  Now I have New Maxine and have graduated to eating many of the foods I was unable to process the first time.  I think you have to experiment with things after giving yourself a chance to heal. The things that I won't eat is carrots, mushrooms and tomatoes, peppers and any other fresh vegetables.  I am now able to eat some lettuce such as Iceberg and Romane and I can eat spinach.   So don't give up, just slowly experiment and write down what does and doesn't work for you.  Good luck!

Reply by OrlandoNewbie, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 1:25 pm

It seems to be all the same message: everything in moderation and chew!  Keep a food diary if you're concerned, so you can track any patterns should you have upsets.

I haven't had issues with spices or vegetables as part of a mixed main dish.  I did get scared off salads for a bit, but I'm working on that one.  By chewing. Wink

If you are having any problems, I see a hint of the probable culprit in your post.  You eat cilantro.  Cilantro is the devil's weed.  It is evil and can overwhelm other, better spices and garnishes.  Join the Stop Cilantro Movement.  We need your support.  (Yes, I am one of those people for whom cilantro tastes like soap --- shudder.) 

Reply by Poobag17, on Wed Sep 12, 2018 3:14 pm

Lol...YES!!  Stop cilantro.  It's against my religion. Lived in South America for 6 months and they sneak it in EvERYTHING!

Reply by petgirl, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:14 pm

Hello, best of luck with your surgery!

I have had my ileostomy for 30 yrs. At first, I fillowed all teh recommende restrictions they suggest. Slowly over time, I wanted to try the "forbidden" foods. SO I introduced items, one at a time, small portions and really paid attention to how they diegested. To this day, some food are "home" foods, but I don't have dietray restrictions at all. Tons of raw veg, beans,kegumes, nuts & seeds..all of it.  Given yourself time to heal, then try some of teh favourites in small portions. Everyone is different!

Reply by justme1956, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:22 pm

once you are healed you can pretty much eat everything.. no skin on veggies fruits and no corn easy on the lettuce...just start off slowly until you get use to the foods and spices ...I gained weight...I was super thin before ...

Reply by Darturbo, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:50 pm

I guess everyone is different but don't believe ever you read or hear. I eat anything and everything, do I have issues, well things keep flowing, seeds, skins, onions, mushrooms and popcorn or anything else. So my advice try things and see what happens, I can not think of anything that truly bothers me or has caused a blockage or pain.

Reply by bigal1579, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 10:36 pm

I have an ileostomy and I eat everything.  In addition to moderation and chewing, also try favorite foods again later - your body is always adjusting and healing, so something that doesn't sit so well today might be fine in 6 months.

Don't give up on your favorite foods.

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