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Will I ever be able to eat the foods I love again? Post-Colectomy problems

Posted: Sun Jan 07, 2018 8:05 pm
by no_colon_powell

I had a total Colectomy with Ileorectal Anastomosis on 11/22/17, and then an emergency hernia repair on 12/11/17. I remained in the hospital until 12/28 because I went into septic shock after the second surgery and ended up in the ICU. I’m finally home and recovering. I’m severely underweight (5’7” and just over 100 lbs.) so I’m desperate to gain. Obviously it’s dangerous to be so thin, especially at my age (almost 40).

My colorectal surgeon said (at my follow up on 1/4/18) that I was looking great and that I could eat whatever I wanted now. I went home and had a huge bowl of Poke (Hawaiian traditional dish) with edamame beans. I spent the next two days in agony...I thought I had a blockage again. Thankfully it wasn’t a blockage.

My question is this: when will I be able to eat fruits? Veggies? Nuts? Seeds? I was vegan before the surgery, so my diet now is very challenging...lots of bread, cheese, soups, etc. and plenty of meat products. I’d die without them, but I’m eager to get back to my favorite kale salad with pine nuts and cranberries. Please help?

Re: Will I ever be able to eat the foods I love again? Post-Colectomy problems

Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 10:12 am
by peanut_8
Welcome to the Colon Club, no_colon-powell. Must say that I had a good chuckle about your name.

You've been through a lot (quite an understatement IMO). It's going to take some time before you're back to eating like you were before. I suspect your Dr. is right and you'll be able to eat your fav kale salad before long. However, while your healing you might want to try something like the low residue diet.

What Is a Low-Residue Diet? It limits high-fiber foods, like whole-grain breads and cereals, nuts, seeds, raw or dried fruits, and vegetables. "Residue" is undigested food, including fiber, that makes up stool. The goal of the diet is to have fewer, smaller bowel movements each day.Nov 30, 2017. ... et-foods#1

Maybe a couple weeks or a month of low residue, and then gradually start introducing other foods, possibly one at a time to see how you tolerate them.

When I was undergoing chemo/rad I had a couple of temporary blockages. After the second one, I made the correlation to the green papaya salad that I had at my favorite Vietnamese restaurant. I love green papaya salad, and was really dismayed to think I would have to give it up forever. Now, I'm 4 years post treatment, and doing very well, eating pretty much whatever I want. I understand that you have a unique situation, butt think there is every reason to be hopeful about your future diet.

Best Wishes,

Re: Will I ever be able to eat the foods I love again? Post-Colectomy problems

Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:40 pm
by Utwo
Please Google Internet or search this forum for BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast).

My definition of the BRAT diet:
- bananas, peeled and cored apples
- rice, buckwheat
- potatoes, yams
- white bread
- fish, chicken, turkey

It makes sense to start with BRAT diet and them gradually introduce other stuff one type of food at a time.

Even now, 1.5 years after my surgery, I better tolerate walnuts and pecan nuts than sunflower seeds.
I do not understand what's wrong with sunflower seeds.
I can eat a bit of beans and humus, that was unimaginable right after the surgery.

Re: Will I ever be able to eat the foods I love again? Post-Colectomy problems

Posted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:30 pm
by DarknessEmbraced
I'm sorry you've been having such a hard time! *hugs* I keep a food/symptom diary since my surgery in 2014. Since surgery I can no longer eat beans, snap peas(anything with a fibrous exterior), broccoli, cabbage, eggs, nuts(severe allergy so I can't eat them any way), ice cream, onions, peanuts, seeds, popcorn and many others. Only certain vegetables don't bother me and I can't eat any raw vegetables. Spicy and really oily foods cause me issues. It's different for everyone. I would start on a low fiber diet(low residue), keep the food/symptom diary, and slowly add in more foods.