General Question

HouseMouse's avatar

Can anyone recommend a vegetarian diet for gastritis?

Asked by HouseMouse (60points) September 22nd, 2013

I have been seeing a gastroenterologist for 6 months who has been very unhelpful. I have received the best suggestions from Google searches but I’ve hit a brick wall. I’m starting to feel weak and need a long term dietary guide for vegetarians, so far I’ve only been able to find carnivorous diets for gastritis.

Any help is appreciated!

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15 Answers

pleiades's avatar

I don’t meant to sound like a smart butt.

But isn’t a vegetarian diet, well, just that? a vegetarian diet?

I would imagine cutting out all gluten would help dramatically. As you may know, the digestive tracks in our intenstines have an extremely hard time breaking down the protein gluten consists of. In fact, gluten damages the digestive tract some are even allergic to is and pass of gluten as diary stools.

snowberry's avatar

Consider also taking aloe. It’s very healing for the stomach. It certainly won’t hurt.

snowberry's avatar

Excellent point about the gluten. Gluten is inflammatory. You also might look at an anti-inflammatory diet, or an alkaline diet (In many ways they are quite similar but there are differences). I’d also look into the possibility of food allergies causing many of your problems. PM me for details.

Judi's avatar

I have Gluten and dairy sensitivities. Try seeing a naturopath. They can help you out if a gastroenterologist won’t.

Unbroken's avatar

Oh @snowberry is right aloe drinks or just that plain aloe you get at health shop is great. I would also consider a protein shake protein is a healer. I am doing one called plantfusion its great. Made out of pea protein and dairy and gluten free. Also include moufas avocados mushrooms and olives. You need healthy fats. Sugars from fruit. Nuts are great too for protein and moufas but some people can’t do them. Beans would be a great alternative.

Unbroken's avatar

I forgot to mention b vitamins. Its hard to get enough even if you are eating enriched foods with no meat. I but a liquid b 12 and a b complex as well as digestive enzymes and a few other supplements from puritans pride the shipping cost is about 4 per order so I get everything at once.

Also probiotic. I was making my own coconut yogurt for a while the store bought kind is too chemically and sweet. But when I couldn’t do that any more I tried almond and could never get it right. So I buy pure which is allergy friendly and refrigerated which means its higher quality. The non refridgerated kind don’t work as efficiently.

Alcat testing is another good way to go.

wildpotato's avatar

I am sorry to hear about your troubles. I myself have given up on the vegetarian option due to the inability to digest most vegetables and many fruits, especially high-protein legumes. Nowadays I eat a ton of yogurt and source all my meat so it comes from happy animals raised sustainably and organically and killed humanely. But good for you for continuing to give vegetarianism a shot. The problem with recommending specific diets is that everyone’s body reacts to stuff differently, and even digests at different rates. Here is some of what I have discovered works for me through years of trial and error:

Eggplant does not seem to ever cause problems, and has become my primary staple vegetable.
Asparagus seems to be safe.
Root vegetables are always a good bet.
Tomatoes are ok as long as I don’t eat too many.
No legumes, ever. Not even peanuts. I have heard that tempeh might be safe because it is prepared differently than tofu, but I’m too scared to try.
No broccoli or cauliflower.
No cabbage or brussels sprouts.
Onions, especially raw, are problematic. Same with bell peppers, though the greens seem to be worse than the colored ones. Chilis can be quite harsh, but I can get away with a de-seeded, sweet jalapeno every so often.
Melons can be problematic, except for watermelon which seems to be fine in reasonable amounts.
Apples are no good, unfortunately. I miss them.
Berries seem to be ok, as do bananas.
Leafy vegetables are ok in general, including leafy spices.
Everyone says to avoid whole grains, but I have been cautiously eating them recently and I think they’re ok.

Don’t just assume you have a sensitivity to gluten – have you had a Celiac test? I know some folks can still have trouble with gluten and not have Celiac, but that’d be the place to start.

Does your GI’s office have a nutritionist you can request a consult with? If not, ask to be referred to one. He or she will be able to help you with suggestions and tracking the effect of different foods. There’s a thing I’ve been wanting to try when I find a good nutritionist where you “blank slate” your diet by eating only rice for a week, then adding foods one at a time to see what happens. I haven’t tried it yet only because it sounds dangerous without medical supervision.

Here is a thread I asked about the same topic several years ago.

Rarebear's avatar

How do you know it’s gastritis?

HouseMouse's avatar

The problem with being a vegetarian and having gastritis is I have to cut out a lot of the vitamin sources I originally depended on. I don’t eat fish or meat so I looked to beans, vegetables, etc. I get incredible pains when I eat many beans, fruit and veggies now.

I have been diagnosed with gastritis by my specialist. I am going to switch providers because he is wasting my time. Last time I saw him he said, “How are you doing? Ok see you in 6 months.” He was in a rush and basically pushed me out of the office.

I will look to see if I am allergic to gluten and inquire about a nutritionist. Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. @wildpotato is informed in what I’m going through, so I especially appreciate that list. I am also allergic to many fresh foods.

JLeslie's avatar

What exactly are your symptoms? Gastritis to me means nothing. Not that I am a doctor, I’m not, but anything ending in it is is basically just inflammation of the area. So? You need to get to the root of what is wrong. I would try eliminating from your diet. Don’t eat something for two weeks, then reintroduce it and see if you feel awful.

When I switch to my very healthy diet it tears up my stomach and colon. By healthy I mean eating more leafy raw greens and other raw veggies that are hard like carrots and celer, I need to eat them all softened up and cooked to digest them ok, and even then I get a little roughed up if I go overboard. Nuts also. Nightmare. Especially almonds, which are so flipping delicious!

By the way, I sometimes get stomach pain, literally I perceive it up in my stomach organ sometimes when I consume very sugary foods. I also get pain up high in the area of the stomach or gallbladder (different pains) if I am constipated.

A lot of people swear by gluten free. I swear by trying dairy free to see if it helps. People also cam have allergies to some fruits and I have seen suggested that the pesticides can irritate some people.

Keep a food diary maybe to narrow down what is making you feel sick.

Did they test you for H. pylori?

snowberry's avatar

There are a lot of things that cause inflammation, and whatever the cause, your stomach lining is inflamed, right? So consider the other things in your diet that may be causing your inflammation. As mentioned before, gluten is one, and rheumatologists often tell their patients to go off the gluten to relieve the inflammation. Also, unnecessary food additives such as preservatives, food colors, and other artificial ingredients tend to be irritating and inflammatory. Figure out what you are allergic to, and eliminate those foods too. Getting rid of the garbage in your diet can do wonders for your health. I second the notion of finding a naturopath to help you with your diet by adding in nutrition that will help you heal.

snowberry's avatar

Keep in mind that medications of various kinds can also irritate the stomach. Just trying to cover all the bases here…

HouseMouse's avatar

@JLeslie If I eat acidic or high citrus foods I get diarrhea or intense pain. I have been trying to go off certain foods like you suggested, so far I think I have been eating too many white bread and cheese. So I’ve focusing on eating greens my stomach can handle. Also trying this new gluten free bread I bought.

@snowberry Thanks, I’m definitely trying the healthier diet. I did notice I was eating too much white bread.

JLeslie's avatar

@HouseMouse Citric sensitivity is very common. Oddly, I used to have a lot of trouble drinking orange juice, but no trouble with grapefruit juice, I have no idea why they would be much different. I don’t drink a lot of juice anyway, so it is not great trauma to not drink it, or sometimes I used to have a little bit, but only with food. As I got older The sensitivity seems to have gone away.

I used to have a really bad lactose intolerance. Within 20 minutes I was in the bethroom, diarrhea, although Lactaid pills did help. After about 8 years of having that problem I swear antibitics might have cured it. I took mega mega antibiotics for something unrelated. I also afterwards took mega antifungals, and also took quite a bit of acidophilus. My lactaid problem seemed to go away around that time, I didn’t actually pin it all down, because I was for the most part dairy free, except for an occasional cheat. Now I can eat anything. Cheese, milk, ice cream, all no problem. I have no idea if the lactose problem really went away because of all those meds I went through or not, but I think it did.

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