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Author Topic:   Low-Residue Diet Update

Posts: 366
Registered: Jul 98

posted 12-18-1998 04:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BobJ   Click Here to Email BobJ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As information to the group, here is my latest report on the success of my efforts on this "diet":

I went off the strict low-residue foods a week ago. Since then I have tried to gradually introduce some fibrous foods - a vegetable here, some oatmeal there, but all in small portions, and all the while still drinking milk and eating eggs and a lot of other dairy products.

The good news: It seems to be working pretty well and relieving some of the more aggravating symptoms, especially the "urgency" thing and the gas.

Not-so-good: I still have the feeling of "incomplete evacuation" some of the time, like a stool is caught near the rectum (yuchhhh! No Matter how often I post and see these discussions, it is still disgusting to me to talk about bowel movements, stools, etc. - but, I'll admit it's getting easier). Even in this case, though, I have noticed that that unfinished "feeling" subsides quicker now.

There seems to be a balance for me between fiber and low-residue. I don't know that I've hit on it yet, but this is definitely an improvement. I have had no urgency, only slight constipation effects (once, a few days ago), very little gas, and am mostly passing normal stools once a day.

I am taking all of next week off, and got a prescription of Colestid from my doc that I was going to try then, but now I'm not so sure I'll do it with this diet thing working as well as it has.

Above it all though, I am by no means "cured" and still suffer some symptoms, just not as intense as before , and now not as many.

Problem is I have to really manage the diet, ease into new foods, and am still wary of an attack (that would be the head game part of this affliction). And, I still have my meds (donnatal and lomotil) as a crutch.

Finally, it's only been some two weeks now, so I'm not ready to proclaim lasting benefits, but more hopefull than before.

On a side note, I can recall in my younger years all the fast cars, fast women, discussions of politics and business I used to have. Now I'm talking about my bowels, discussions with my business associates revolve around health (cholesterol levels, prostate, heart, etc.), I have no interest in speeding on the freeway unless it's to a bathroom, and I wouldn't want to trade in my 50 year old dear wife on two 25 year olds or anything else for that matter. In my wildest dreams, I never would have imagined coming to this point.

Anyway, everyone have a good holiday, and I'll report again sometime week after next I'm sure.

Hang in...BJ


Posts: 304
Registered: Dec 98

posted 12-18-1998 05:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JillAnn   Click Here to Email JillAnn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Just a word of concern or warning about the Colestid. Although I know it works for some people, I took it for a while and it gave me HORRIBE gas!! It really didn't do anything else good for me so I stopped taking it!

Oh, about years gone by with fast cars and fast women... think how I feel... I am only 25 and I have this horrid problem!!

Keep us updated on the low-residue thing, my doctor suggested it for me, but I have a hard time with it!

Have a good weekend!


Posts: 137
Registered: Sep 98

posted 12-18-1998 07:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bill   Click Here to Email Bill     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hi, Bobj,
Glad to hear you're seeing some improvement. The diet may not "cure" but it does, at least, make the condition manageable. I would say that if you're seeing a noticeable improvement this soon, maybe you'll be one of the lucky ones that really does get cured (eventually). If you're far enough along to start introducing some of the other foods, maybe you can slack off on the dairy some and see it that helps even more. (My diet allows hard cheeses, but no milk or yogurt). Anyway, glad you're doing better, keep us posted!

Ray B

Posts: 64
Registered: Dec 98

posted 12-19-1998 12:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ray B     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Congrats on your new diet. I've never maintained a steady prescribed diet. My doc gave me a list of "desirable" foods along with Metamucil three times a day when I was first diagnosed in 1995. And it helped at first, but after a short time didn't seem to make much difference. Now I just try to be smart. My symptoms (ibs-d) are consistent, but not overly severe most of the time. The biggest effects on my ibs are alcohol, lack of sleep, and stress. A lack of respect of all three at one time can mess me up for a couple of days continuously. Anyway, I wish you continued success! Ray B.


Posts: 366
Registered: Jul 98

posted 12-28-1998 06:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BobJ   Click Here to Email BobJ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
After Christmas Update:

Was home all last week and had a chance to try the Colestid, along with experimenting some more with the low-residue diet.

My latest impressions/thoughts/results: I started taking a one gram tab of Colestid last Sunday. I also kept to my low-residue regimen UNTIL Friday. Then, because I seemed to be doing so well, and the colestid actually seemed to slightly enhance the relief of symptoms and WAS NOT causing me any bad constipation or other side effects - I BLEW IT!!! On Friday, Christmas Day, I ate without any regard or caution, thinking that I was almost "cured". Whoaaa!! I paid for that little transgression and premature celebration on Saturday and some even yesterday.

So, the moral of the story, or at least my opinion on it, is that DIET does play a heavier role than I had previously thought - and, while I'm not saying that the Colestid is without good effects for some, it was not for me any magic bullet. OK...admittedly, I've only given it a week, and I did violate the diet axiom, but I just haven't seen any real effect from it one way or the other. Maybe it's the dose, maybe it's the fact that I ate all manner of spicey, processed, high fat content, sugary - yuchhhh! - holiday fare. Whatever, I'm back on a strict regimen of low-residue fish, eggs, and dairy products - and actually, today, am now feeling a little better.

Ray B, you mentioned that "sleep" (lack thereof) is one of the triggers for you. I also have noticed that effect, but only as a trigger and not one that I suffered from last week (a very relaxing, restfull, stay-at-home holiday for me).

I am starting to keep a food and behaviour log again, and did notice that not only did my food intake volume increase the day before my episode, but that the type of food I mixed that day (Christmas) was also not in keeping with IBS "rules".

I am now more convinced than ever that our digestive systems are easily put off balance, by EITHER volume or TYPE of food, and it's very difficult to regain that "colonic" balance once you've put it out of whack (via food or stress).

So, for now, I'm back to the basic low-residue, not as "excited" about the possibilities of Colestid, and trying again.

I did notice some substantial relief that week or so before Christmas when I first started on this low-residue kick, so I hope I can get that balance back. Feels like it right now, but I'm really leary of making another premature judgement.

JillAnn, thanks for the warning. I did stop taking the Colestid as of this morning, but not because of any percieved effects from it as much as wanting to just get back in balance before trying again. Sorry, I can't imagine the cross you have to bear having this affliction at age 25. My compliments on the maturity it must require, and wishes for your recovery so you can be "foolish" and carefree befitting the age.

Bill, as far as I can tell, dairy (milk, ice cream) doesn't really bother me and in fact seems to help. Go figure - we all know that IBS can be so different for each, so...

All on this for now...will update again on this topic in a week or so.


Posts: 13
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-03-1999 10:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for msmisery   Click Here to Email msmisery     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'm new to this board. You all have probably discussed low-residue foods before, but since I am starting tomorrow with the process of elimination or it should be the process of adding too my diet, could you tell me what low-residue foods are? I am starting off with chicken, fish, rice or small baked potato. All bran or raisan bran with skim milk and plenty of water.




Posts: 366
Registered: Jul 98

posted 01-04-1999 06:59 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BobJ   Click Here to Email BobJ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Low-residue (careful, I'm not saying NO residue) is very simply those foods that result in very little, if any, waste remnants after digestion. Things like eggs, fish, dairy products (cheeses, ice cream, milk) and the like are on the list. I'm not a dietician so I can't speak that knowledgeably to the topic, but a lot of it is low fiber (or no fiber) stuff.

CAUTION: I started this at my doctor's suggestion, so you may want to see what yours thinks of it.

The idea seems intuitive, but it's not for everyone. In fact, those that have the lactose problem will probably not have success with the dairy products portion of it. There are a lot of variants to this diet, one in particular being the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). Actually, as far as I understand it, the SCD isn't really low-residue as much as it is a method for eliminating hard-to-digest foods. A fellow named "Bill" posts on this board regularly and has had some success with the SCD thing and probably could explain it much better than I could. I'm sure he wouldn't mind an e-mail if you're interested. In fact, I'm going to probably do a little more reading up on this SCD thing (there is a web site on it) and maybe try it myself.

I'm firmly convinced that diet is the primary factor in my case, and have had some success managing the symptoms but I still have a ways to go on it.

In answer to your specific question, or comment, on chicken, fish, etc., I would say that the meats are certainly low residue but the rice and bran are not. However, the "low-residue" regimen does not necessarily rule out fiber, it just minimizes the volume of it. For example, in my case the less fiber I include in my diet the better my ability to control the IBS symptoms. As I've said before, that's not the case for everyone.

Talk it over with your doc and a dietician and see what's best for you.


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