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✨All about the Ostomy Diet during Holidays! ✨ + A Recipe!

As the season of gratitude approaches, individuals with ostomies may find themselves contemplating the delicious challenges that come with holiday feasting. Fear not! With a mindful approach, you can savor the flavors of Thanksgiving while keeping your ostomy health in check. This Thanksgiving, we celebrate the warmth of family, the joy of togetherness, and the blessings from above.

Your ostomy shouldn't hinder you from enjoying festive treats. Be cautious with nuts, corn, and dried fruits, which may pose challenges for ileostomy and colostomy users. Steer clear of trigger foods, and don't hesitate to ask about ingredients. Your well-being is a priority, and it's okay to be mindful of what you consume during the holiday festivities. 

High Trigger foods for you could be;

High-Fiber Foods: Foods high in insoluble fiber can be challenging for individuals with certain types of ostomies. These include raw vegetables, whole nuts, seeds, and certain fruits with tough skins or seeds.

Gas-Producing Foods: Some foods can contribute to increased gas production, potentially causing discomfort or pouch ballooning. Examples include beans, carbonated beverages, and certain cruciferous vegetables like cabbage and broccoli.

Tough Skins and Seeds: The skins of fruits and vegetables, as well as seeds, may be difficult to digest and can contribute to blockages. Peeling fruits like apples and removing seeds from fruits and vegetables can help.

Nuts and Popcorn: These foods, being hard and potentially sharp, can be challenging to digest and may contribute to the risk of blockages. Chewing thoroughly and consuming them in moderation can help.

Certain Dairy Products: Some individuals may experience lactose intolerance or sensitivity post-ostomy surgery. It's advisable to introduce dairy products gradually and monitor how they are tolerated.

Spicy Foods: Spicy foods can irritate the digestive system, and some individuals may find them uncomfortable. It's advisable to introduce spicy foods gradually and in moderation.

Large Quantities of Citrus: While fruits like oranges and grapefruits are generally well-tolerated, consuming them in large quantities may lead to increased acidity in the stool for some individuals.

Alcohol and Caffeine: These substances can contribute to dehydration, which may affect stoma function. It's essential to stay well-hydrated, and moderation is key when consuming alcoholic or caffeinated beverages.

Chewing Gum: Chewing gum can introduce excess air into the digestive system, potentially leading to increased gas. Additionally, the artificial sweeteners in gum can cause digestive discomfort for some individuals.

Certain High-Fat Foods: High-fat foods can contribute to loose stools. While healthy fats are essential, it's advisable to monitor the consumption of high-fat items.

Don't shy away from trying new foods; just be sensible about it. Introduce new items gradually to understand their effects on your body. Keep an eye on gas-producing foods and chewing gum, making adjustments as needed. Finding a balanced diet may take some trial and error, and that's perfectly okay. 

A balanced diet post-ostomy may also require a bit of trial and error, especially with high-fiber foods. While chewing thoroughly helps, be cautious of potential blockages. Remember, these are general guidelines; individual experiences with food can vary. Consult your physician, or your WOC nurse for your personalized advice tailored to your unique needs.

Chewing your food thoroughly is particularly important for those with ileostomies or short bowels. Give your body the time it needs to digest and absorb nutrients effectively. Additionally, if you have a urostomy, staying hydrated is key, and a bonus—enjoy some holiday apple cider rich in Vitamin C.

Amidst the hustle and bustle, hydration should never be forgotten. Aim for 8-10 glasses of water a day, especially during the holiday season. For those with urostomies, ample water intake is crucial to prevent urinary tract infections. Watch your electrolyte levels, considering diluted sports drinks or electrolyte drops to stay well-nourished. Checkout our other blogs to find recipes to help with hydration!

And speaking of recipes, we have just the casserole for all those leftovers!

Just take these ingredients or substitute them as you please,

1 1/2 Cups Turkey Shredded

3/4 Cup Cranberry Sauce

2 Cups Mashed Potatoes

1 Cup Turkey Gravy

2 Tbsp Milk

2 Cups Stuffing

Broth, or Melted Butter to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400-degrees. Combine the turkey and cranberry sauce and spread evenly on the bottom of a baking dish.

2. Evenly press on mashed potatoes.

3. Mix milk and gravy and spread evenly over the potatoes. Sprinkle on leftover stuffing and lightly drizzle broth or butter over the top. (It helps keep the stuffing moist.)

4. Cover with tin foil and bake at 400-degrees for 25-30 minutes or til heated all the way through.

Remember, these are general recommendations, and individual responses to foods can vary. It's crucial to work closely with healthcare professionals, including a WOC (Wound, Ostomy, and Continence) nurse or a registered dietitian, to determine a personalized dietary plan based on individual needs, preferences, and tolerances. Regular communication with healthcare providers is key in managing and optimizing the diet for those with an ostomy.

Wishing you a Thanksgiving filled with love, laughter, and countless reasons to be thankful. 🧡🦃🍁

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