Painful bumps and tears in your rectum can make everything you do feel like torture. Tasks as easy as walking, sitting, and sleeping can be unbearable when hemorrhoids leave you feeling uncomfortable. Hence, you need to ensure you avoid eating anything that could turn your already bad situation into an absolute nightmare.
What Causes Hemorrhoids to Form?
Before we look at what we need to avoid, we must first understand what causes hemorrhoids.
Hemorrhoids or piles are internal or external swellings in the rectum caused by inflamed damaged veins. When a person does not consume sufficient soluble and insoluble fiber, chances of getting hemorrhoids increase.
Lack of soluble and insoluble fiber could result from consuming a diet that has little or no whole grains, legumes, leafy vegetables, fruits, root vegetables, and pulses. A similar situation happens when a person’s water intake is less than the required amount.
Soluble fiber helps bulk up the stool and make it softer and less stiff. Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, lines the insides of the gut and rectum with a gel-like substance that works as a lubricant, allowing the smooth passing of the stools.
When a person’s body lacks dietary fiber, their stool becomes hard and stiff, causing constipation. As a result, they exert more pressure to aid stool expulsion. Excessive force may lead to the rectum and anus getting injured and hemorrhoids forming.
What Foods Should be Avoided with Hemorrhoids?
If a person is suffering from hemorrhoids, the wrong diet could make the condition worse. A person must shift to high fiber and high-water content diet in such a situation. Simultaneously, the person must absolutely try to avoid:
1. Excess of Dairy Items
Even though dairy items such as cheese, milk, and butter do not directly cause hemorrhoids, they can still trigger a flare-up. Dairy items have little or no fiber content. As a result, a high-dairy content diet can cause constipation and worsen any existing hemorrhoids.
Dairy-containing foods are also known to cause gas. When a person is already constipated and suffering from hemorrhoids, gas could put additional pressure on the rectum and anus. This is often very painful and adds to the person’s discomfort.
According to some research, dairy-containing foods can also accumulate stools and make them harder. This happens when the fatty acids inside the intestines bind with the calcium in dairy. When trying to expel stools, the hemorrhoids might burst and bleed.
Consuming vegan butter and vegan cheese and avoiding ice creams could help the situation.
2. Refined Grains
Natural grains have a layer of bran or germ covering them, which contain many essential minerals and are rich in fiber. When these grains are milled into refined grains, they no longer contain as much fiber as before. As a result, eating refined grains can cause constipation and trigger a hemorrhoid flare-up.
Refined grains usually accumulate and sit in the stomach and intestines for longer periods. This accumulation causes the stool to stiffen up. As a result, expulsion can cause hemorrhoids to worsen and bleed.
Consuming bran bread and brown rice instead of white bread and rice could be the best option.
3. Deep-Fried Fast Foods
Fast foods are one of the least healthy meal options a person can choose from. They contain a lot of bad oils, hard-to-digest refined grains, fat, and almost no fiber. The high oil and fat content can severely damage the intestines and cause internal swelling. This would make passing the stools even more painful. As a result, people try to delay going to the bathroom and consequently get constipated. As a result, their hemorrhoids get further damaged, and healing is interrupted.
These foods usually include burgers, French fries, pizzas, donuts, and cakes. One way to consume these foods would be preparing them healthily. This includes using unrefined grains/flour and air frying.
Foods with high salt content are bad for the body in many ways. Not only can they trigger heart problems, but they also contribute to an unhealthy digestive tract.
When foods containing high amounts of salt enter the body, they slow down the digestive system. This leads to stool accumulating and becoming harder with time. The stiff stool causes constipation and triggers hemorrhoid flare-ups.
Moreover, high sodium content in the blood can result in bloating and gas. This build-up is often extremely painful, and sitting down feels too impossible. The bloating and accumulated gas put a lot of pressure on the rectum and anus, which can even burst hemorrhoids in extreme cases. Such hemorrhoids, if not treated, can get infected and even prove to be life-threatening.
Furthermore, salt causes water retention in the body. This means when a person consumes water, the high sodium content causes water to store in the body’s muscles and tissues. This leads to the stool being dehydrated, dry, and hard. As a result, hemorrhoids could get damaged, and the swelling could bleed.
Choosing a high-potassium salt diet at such times is the best option. One could also try to flavor their food with natural flavonoids such as lemons and tamarind.
5. Coffee and Carbonated Drinks
A healthy digestive system largely depends on a well-hydrated body. When a person drinks less water and consumes foods and drinks that dehydrate the body, the gel lining the intestines dries up. Furthermore, the stools become dry, hard, and stiffer.
This exact condition happens when a person consumes too many caffeinated and carbonated drinks. The dried-up hard stool makes bowel movements very painful. The expulsion of stiff stools could damage healing hemorrhoids and result in more hemorrhoids.
The tip here is to drink a high amount of water every day and shift to less dehydrating teas and fresh fruit juices.
When you are already recovering from something as painful as hemorrhoid, you want to make sure nothing further adds to your agony and distress.
Hence, avoid foods with excessive salt, oil, and refined grains. Choose a diet that contains fresh fruits and vegetables, high water content, high fiber content, etc.
For more information and assistance regarding finding relief from your hemorrhoids, click here.