In case of gastrointestinal problems, this diet should be followed to help in the relief of heartburn, vomiting, diarrhea and nausea.
With a soft diet, peptic ulcers can be treated effectively, especially when combined with some changes in lifestyle, such as the deduction of stress.
The foods in this diet are characteristically soft texture, low in fiber, high pH and very little spiced.
This helps prevent an increase in the production of acid, reflux or some other irritation in the digestive tract.
This diet is ideal in cases of recovery of certain medical conditions such as ulcers, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and intestinal or stomach surgery.
It is intended to reduce stress in the digestive tract and promote healing.
The soft diet is the best dietary approach for digestive symptoms, this addresses the root of the symptoms, so the recommendations vary according to the individual and the causes that cause the problems.
Recommended foods in the soft diet
The needs of each individual are different, so the dietary options are different and will depend on a diagnosis and a specific lifestyle.
However, the foods commonly recommended in the soft diet include the following:
Milk and low-fat milk byproducts
Low-fat or fat-free milk, yogurt and low-fat cheeses, such as cottage cheese, are good choices.
However, sometimes lactose intolerance or intolerance to milk protein are common reasons for those gastrointestinal discomforts that some people suffer from.
It is recommended to eliminate dairy products in the case of peptic ulcers.
The vegetables that should be consumed include:
- Green beans.
- White or sweet potato.
These vegetables can be used either frozen, fresh or canned, but should not be eaten raw.
Ideally, steamed or boiled, with little or no fat.
Vegetables that cause gases, such as cruciferous ones, should be excluded: broccoli, cauliflower, kale and Brussels sprouts, among others.
Fruits with low fiber content
Those that are generally approved for a soft diet are fruits that must be cooked or canned and that do not have fibers.
These include bananas and melon, avocados can also be well tolerated even though they are higher in fiber and with fat content.
Refined wheat products can be good choices.
However, in some cases the digestive symptoms have worsened when grains containing gluten are ingested, so if you do not suffer from gluten intolerance, you can include in the list:
- The soda crackers
- Cooked cereals, such as cream of wheat, oatmeal and farina.
- Cereals or atoles low in sugar.
- Poultry, eggs and fish
Lean protein sources are recommended because they are safe to consume in these cases, as long as they are seasoned with mild seasonings and little or no fat. These include:
- Poultry meat without skin.
- Fish, like salmon and trout.
- Seafood, such as shrimp, lobster and crab.
Soups such as creams or clear broths are excellent options, as long as their ingredients are included in the list of foods that can be consumed.
Chamomile tea, with or without honey, can be a medicinal and relaxing drink option.
Desserts, such as vanilla puddings, marshmallows and plain cookies, should be consumed in moderation because added sugar can make symptoms worse.
Peanut butter and seedless jams can be used to spread on bread.
Most condiments can be irritating to the stomach, but you can experiment with basil, parsley, salt and some mild seasonings to determine which ones can be tolerated.
Restricted foods in the soft diet
Food affects each person differently.
Some have heartburn and other gastric symptoms derived from the use of products based on tomato, garlic and tea with caffeine.
Others may tolerate highly spiced foods, but present problems digesting any high amount of fat.
Individual needs may vary, but in general, these foods should be avoided if you follow a soft diet:
Dairy products with high fat content
Dairy products high in fat and cheeses with strong flavor should be avoided.
- The whole milk
- The whipped cream.
- The Ice creams.
- Blue cheese and roquefort.
Lactose triggers symptoms in some people, therefore, dairy products should be avoided if there is intolerance to this component.
Some vegetables that produce gas or are irritating. These include:
Tomatoes and tomato by-products usually tend to produce acidity and should be avoided.
Fresh and acidic fruits
Generally, if the fruit has skin or small seeds, it is not recommended for a soft diet, because these elements give it fiber.
On the other hand, the acidity present in some of the fruits can trigger heartburn in some people.
Fruits that should be avoided include:
- All the berries
- The prunes.
- The oranges.
- The lemons.
- The files.
- The grapefruit.
- Whole grains
High-fiber foods and whole grains should be avoided if a low-fiber or low-residue diet is followed.
Sometimes, gluten can be a trigger for some people with intolerance problems so all forms of wheat, rye and barley should be avoided.
Fat meats, poultry, beans and fish
Dry or canned grains of all kinds can generate gases.
Beef, poultry with skin and fried fish can also irritate the intestine.
Avoid the consumption of fat or fried protein sources of any kind, as well as all processed meats.
Likewise, processed foods and those that are highly seasoned should be avoided.
All alcoholic beverages are often irritating to the stomach.
So can drinks with caffeine, tea and soda.
Most dressings and sauces, such as mustard, ketchup, salad dressing and horseradish, are highly irritating.
Foods such as those included in the following list can also worsen irritation symptoms:
- Desserts with fat content, such as cheesecake and chocolate.
- The olives.
- The granola
- The nuts.
General soft diet tips
It should be eaten in smaller portions several times a day, it may be easier for the stomach to digest them than to do it with three larger meals.
Try savoring each bite of food by eating slowly.
You should also avoid eating late at night, within two hours before going to bed, because going to bed with a full stomach can worsen your symptoms.
The soft diet does not provide all the nutrients your body needs in the long term, so they are short-term diets.
In some cases, medications such as antacids and renovators of the intestinal flora may be prescribed to the regimen.
Changes in lifestyle are recommended, such as stress management, physical exercise and weight reduction.
In spite of the limitations of the soft diet, a balanced and pleasant menu can be made, you should try to consume organic foods without added sugars.
At each meal, choose beverages without caffeine, such as herbal tea, soft fruit juice, low-fat milk or water.
- Scrambled eggs or poached without fat.
- Corn flour.
- Cooked or canned pears.
- Fruit puree.
- White bread sandwich with peanut butter. Cottage cheese.
- Low-fat vanilla pudding or rice.
In mid afternoon
- Low-fat cottage cheese.
- Baked or roasted chicken.
- Steamed white rice or boiled noodles.
- Cooked peas or green beans.
- Rice with skim milk
- Cream of wheat, oatmeal or cooked rice cereal (sweetened with little honey or maple syrup).
- Canned or cooked fruit
- Grilled chicken.
- Mashed potatoes with skim milk or rice.
- Cooked carrots.
- Cooked peaches or canned fruit cocktail.
In mid afternoon
- Simple cookies
- Roasted salmon.
- White rice or couscous.
- Steamed asparagus.
- Angel cake
- Cereal with skim milk.
- Cooked fruit
- Rice cakes with nut butter.
- Noodle soup with chicken.
- Cottage cheese.
In mid afternoon
- Baked apple with a little maple syrup.
- White fish on the grill.
- Cooked peas.
- Baked potato with low-fat sour cream.
- Frozen yogurt.
A soft diet is usually temporary and in case of specific pathologies, a permanent part of the lifestyle.
The key to the success of a soft diet is to make it simple and consume easily digestible foods.
If you are permanent, you must ensure that the diet meets specific medical and nutritional needs.