What Causes Diverticulitis?

What Causes Diverticulitis?

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Since: Mar 12

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#1 Apr 24, 2012
I just searched Google for "diverticulitis causes." The following page seems to make the most sense to me. I've included the text from that page.

http://womenshealth.about.com/cs/diverticulit...

What Causes Diverticular Disease?

Doctors believe a low-fiber diet is the main cause of diverticular disease. The disease was first noticed in the United States in the early 1900's. At about the same time, processed foods were introduced to the American diet. Many processed foods contain refined, low-fiber flour. Unlike whole-wheat flour, refined flour has no wheat bran. Diverticular disease is common in developed or industrialized countries--particularly the United States, England, and Australia--where low-fiber diets are common. The disease is rare in countries of Asia and Africa, where people eat high-fiber vegetable diets. Fiber is the part of fruits, vegetables, and grains that the body cannot digest. Some fiber dissolves easily in water (soluble fiber). It takes on a soft, jelly-like texture in the intestines. Some fiber passes almost unchanged through the intestines (insoluble fiber). Both kinds of fiber help make stools soft and easy to pass. Fiber also prevents constipation.

Constipation makes the muscles strain to move stool that is too hard. It is the main cause of increased pressure in the colon. The excess pressure causes the weak spots in the colon to bulge out and become diverticula.

Diverticulitis occurs when diverticula become infected or inflamed. Doctors are not certain what causes the infection. It may begin when stool or bacteria are caught in the diverticula. An attack of diverticulitis can develop suddenly and without warning.

--------

The above text seems to agree with my theory that the foods we eat (processed foods) are the major factor in why people get diverticulitis.

Since: Mar 12

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#2 Apr 24, 2012
In my case, I've always blamed eating too much whole grain bread for a few months and taking Vitamin D supplements.

Here is a Google search for "Vitamin D bloating constipation":

https://www.google.com/#hl=en&sclient=psy...

I took 2000 IUs of Vitamin D for a month before my bloating and constipation began, which were the initial symptoms before the cramps began a few months later, due to infection, an abscess, and a diseased and inflamed colon. I believe the Vitamin D supplements contributed to the bloating and constipation I had. Vitamins do not always break down and can clog up the colon. If you take a lot of supplements and/or vitamins, you might want to search Google for: vitamins bloating constipation

Since: Mar 12

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#3 Apr 24, 2012
Also, when I discovered this fact back in late January 2011, I immediately quit taking Vitamin D (which my nephologist had advised me to take -- I had taken 1000 IUs for several months, and then he told me to double the dosage).

The bloating continued, but the constipation eased up a little for a few months. However, I continued to eat a lot of whole grain bread, so my condition never got better until I had the colon resection surgery in November 2011.

I can say with 100% certainty that stress did NOT play any part in my diverticulitis condition. I've worked a stressful job for three months every year for 37 years and never had this problem before.

I firmly believe that what we put into our mouths is what causes diverticulitis. Meats, breads, starchy carbs, dairy, and processed foods, plus vitamins and supplements, can all be hard to digest and can cause colon problems, especially after several years of shoving them into our mouths.

Since: Apr 12

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#4 Apr 24, 2012
Caution people, the above is one person's opinion and has no basis in fact except that the foods we consume are a *contributing factor* in many cases.

If I have learned anything from the thousands of posts on these threads I learned there are many contributing factors to this disease. We have people on here who are lean vegetarian runners who are young to others who know stress is the biggest contributing factor for them. Do your own research and listen to your body.

Be in good health!

Since: Mar 12

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#5 Apr 25, 2012
It's a known fact (and not my opinion) that lack of fiber is the major reason for bloating, constipation, cramps, and diarrhea, which can result in inflammation, infection, and the formation of pouches, polyps, and abscesses in the colon. You only have to read several of the links found by the Google link I posted above to learn that lack of fiber is the major cause of diverticulitis. Many of those links are on medical sites.

Once you develop these symptoms, stress usually does or can follow. This is simple common sense. Stress is just another symptom of diverticulitis. It is not usually the primary cause, as some people have posted in this forum.

The main reason for lack of fiber in our diets is because the more popular foods that people eat (meats, potatoes, breads, sugars, dairy, and processed, packaged foods) contain little to no fiber. However, many of these foods contain a whole lot of additives, preservatives, high-fructose corn syrup, and soybean oil, not to mention all of the drugs that are injected into animals and chickens to make them grow much quicker, so they can be butchered quicker.

Also, another very important factor is that cooked foods contain few to no enzymes, because cooking the foods (above 111 degrees) destroys the enzymes that are needed for proper digestion of the foods you eat and for proper functioning of the cells in our bodies.

When you eat cooked foods (that have no enzymes and little to no fiber), and when you aren't getting enough exercise to burn off those empty calories containing no real nutrition, the extra proteins, fats, starchy carbs, cholesterol, and sugars will be stored in your body, which can result in weight gain, clogging of your tissues, organs (especially the colon), cells, and bloodstream, which then results in fatigue, lack of energy, and a host of illnesses and diseases.

There's a lot of research you can do to find the real truth about diverticulitis and other illnesses that are caused from eating the acid and mucus-forming foods from the categories of meats, potatoes, breads, dairy, sugars, and processed, packaged foods. Google is a great place to start your research.

Since: Mar 12

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#6 Apr 25, 2012
To summarize:

Major factors for many illnesses and diseases:

1) Eating an abundance of cooked foods that are acid and mucus-forming, containing no enzymes and little to no fiber

2) Not getting enough exercise

3) Not getting an adequate amount of sleep
Georgia

United States

#7 Apr 25, 2012
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/...

Diets High in Fiber Won't Protect Against Diverticulosis, Study Finds

ScienceDaily (Jan. 23, 2012)— For more than 40 years, scientists and physicians have thought eating a high-fiber diet lowered a person's risk of diverticulosis, a disease of the large intestine in which pouches develop in the colon wall. A new study of more than 2,000 people reveals the opposite may be true.

Since: Mar 12

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#8 Apr 25, 2012
Georgia,

Goes to show you don't know what to believe anymore! Doctors have told us for decades (and are still telling us to this day) to eat 30 grams of fiber each day. This particular single study says otherwise. Many of the medical sites, such as, Mayo Clinic, Web MD, and the other popular medical sites on the web are still telling people that low fiber diets can cause diverticulitis.

So, what does this prove? To me, it proves that the medical industry doesn't know anything about nutrition or diets, and that's why your doctors will very give their patients advice about the foods they really should be eating to remain healthy, vibrant, and full of natural energy.

But think about this:

What happens to meat and milk if you leave them out on the counter for a while? What do you think happens to meat and milk a day or two after you shove them into your mouth? Keep in mind that meat can take up to 72 hours to fully digest and exit the body.

The foods that are the hardest to digest are:

Meats, including chicken, beef, and pork (including all the hormones, antibiotics, and whatever else they inject into the animals)
Fried foods
Starchy carbs
Dairy
Sugars
Breads and refined grains
Processed and packaged foods (with all of the high amounts of cholesterol, sodium, carbs, fats, sugars, additives, preservatives, etc.)

It's no wonder that 1/2 to 2/3 (or more) of people over 60 will develop diverticula during their lives!

http://www.tcolincampbell.org/courses-resourc...

Risk Factors

◦Advancing age: Diverticula are present in nearly half of Americans by age 60, and more than two–thirds of Americans over age 80 are affected. In contrast, less than 5 percent of people under age 40 are affected.

◦Lifestyle: Industrialized countries have a much higher incidence of diverticular disease than developing nations. Some Western nations have prevalence rates that approach 40 percent of the population, whereas developing countries in Asia and Africa have prevalence well below 1 percent. Further, developing nations that adopt a more Western lifestyle (especially a low–fiber diet) have increased rates of diverticulosis.

◦Low dietary fiber intake: Several studies have linked low dietary fiber intake to the development of diverticular disease. Further, diverticular disease is much less common in vegetarians, whose diets tend to be much higher in fiber than those of nonvegetarians.

◦Total fat and red meat intake: High intake of total fat and red meat has also been correlated with a higher risk for diverticular disease.

◦Sedentary lifestyle

-----

Notice how it states "several studies," as compared to the link you provided that was just a "single study."

So, Georgia, what's your opinion of ALL those other studies that the medical industry has undertaken in the last many decades? Do we just forget about ALL of those prior study results and ONLY believe this ONE SINGLE CASE STUDY?

Since: Mar 12

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#9 Apr 25, 2012
Should be:

that's why your doctors will very RARELY give their patients advice about the foods...

Since: Mar 12

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#10 Apr 25, 2012
Reformatted for easier reading:

RISK FACTORS

1) Advancing age: Diverticula are present in nearly half of Americans by age 60, and more than two–thirds of Americans over age 80 are affected. In contrast, less than 5 percent of people under age 40 are affected.

2) Lifestyle: Industrialized countries have a much higher incidence of diverticular disease than developing nations. Some Western nations have prevalence rates that approach 40 percent of the population, whereas developing countries in Asia and Africa have prevalence well below 1 percent. Further, developing nations that adopt a more Western lifestyle (especially a low–fiber diet) have increased rates of diverticulosis.

3) Low dietary fiber intake: Several studies have linked low dietary fiber intake to the development of diverticular disease.

---->>>> Further, diverticular disease is much less common in vegetarians, whose diets tend to be much higher in fiber than those of nonvegetarians.

(Whew! I'm sure glad I'm now eating and drinking mostly fruits, vegetables, and green leafy plants, because I've been feeling great since I changed my diet and quit eating all of those BAD foods! I highly doubt that I'll ever have diverticulitis again in my life because of this simple change I made 112 days ago.)

4) Total fat and red meat intake: High intake of total fat and red meat has also been correlated with a higher risk for diverticular disease.

5) Sedentary lifestyle

Since: Mar 12

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#11 Apr 25, 2012
http://www.tcolincampbell.org/courses-resourc...

Diverticular Disease: Nutritional Considerations

Researchers have been studying nutritional steps that can help prevent or treat diverticular disease. The following steps are under study:

High dietary fiber intake: Fiber–poor diets appear to be the primary cause of diverticular disease. Individuals who eat generous amounts of insoluble fiber have 40 percent lower risk of diverticular disease, compared to those consuming little dietary fiber. Good sources of insoluble fiber include wheat bran, legumes, skin of fruit, nuts, and seeds.

A meat–free diet: Not surprisingly, meat–eaters have a much higher incidence of diverticular disease (33 percent) compared with vegetarians (12 percent). Eating a diet low in fiber and high in meat increases the risk for symptomatic diverticular disease more than threefold. Furthermore, in patients who eat the largest amount of meat, the risk for diverticulosis of the right side of the colon may be as high as 25 times greater than patients who eat the least.

An active lifestyle: High levels of physical activity may have a protective effect against diverticular disease. Constipation, which is a known risk factor for diverticulitis, is related to inactivity. While moderate physical activity has little protective effect, more intense activity, such as jogging or running, appears to reduce risk by about 40 percent.

In Summary:

1) Eat more insoluble fiber

2) Eat less meat

3) Get more exercise

Since: Mar 12

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#12 Apr 25, 2012
http://www.tcolincampbell.org/courses-resourc...

Treatment

Nutrition is the primary consideration for prevention and treatment. The risk of developing diverticula can be reduced by increasing fiber intake, either through high–fiber foods or fiber supplements, along with other diet changes (see Nutritional Considerations).

Diverticulosis itself does not require treatment.

Diverticulitis generally requires hospitalization, intravenous fluids, and antibiotics.

--->>> Patients with diverticulitis have a 40 percent risk of recurrence after the initial episode and an 80 percent risk of recurrence following a second episode. To prevent recurrence, many patients will require surgical removal of the involved section of the colon.

Diverticular bleeding, if severe or recurrent, may require hospitalization, intravenous fluids, blood transfusions, and surgical removal of the involved area of colon.

Since: Mar 12

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#13 Apr 25, 2012
http://www.tcolincampbell.org/courses-resourc...

Diagnosis

History and physical examination and blood testing are the initial steps. They cannot make the diagnosis, but they may raise suspicion. In particular, the combination of left lower abdominal pain, fever, and elevated white blood cell count suggests diverticulitis.

Abdominal CT scan is the test of choice to diagnose diverticulosis and diverticulitis.

If diverticular bleeding is suspected, a colonoscopy is the test of choice to confirm the diagnosis and identify the site of bleeding.

Colonoscopy with biopsy to rule out colon cancer should be performed after the initial event has subsided.

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#14 Apr 25, 2012
http://www.tcolincampbell.org/courses-resourc...

Overview:

Diverticula are herniations or “outpouchings” of the colon (large intestine) that occur at weak sites in the colon wall.

The development of diverticula appears to be associated with a low–fiber diet. A lack of fiber renders the stool dry and low in bulk, requiring increased pressure by the colon to propel the stool along. Over time, the increased pressure weakens the colon wall and results in the formation of diverticula. In contrast, high fiber intake results in stool that is softer and easier to pass.

Diverticula can result in several disorders:

Diverticulosis simply means the presence of diverticula. On its own, diverticulosis generally does not cause symptoms and does not require treatment. However, some people do report mild lower abdominal pain, cramping, bloating, constipation, or diarrhea.

Diverticulitis occurs when the diverticula become infected and inflamed, which occurs in 10 to 20 percent of patients. This is a severe disease that requires hospitalization and may necessitate surgical removal of a portion of the colon. Symptoms include fever, severe lower abdominal pain and tenderness, nausea, and vomiting.

Diverticular bleeding occurs when a nearby blood vessel ruptures into the diverticula. This is the most common cause of lower gastrointestinal bleeding in the elderly. It is usually painless, but patients may notice black, tarry stools (melena) or bleeding from the rectum.
dr fungus says

Rose Bay, Australia

#15 Jun 27, 2012
thats what happen when you highly educate somebody they dont have simple solutions they like to complicate it to prove their worth.chronic candida or yeast infection is a mother of almost any disease and diverticulitis as well.try to tell that to science worshipping masses,who would rather die under doctors control just for the taste of it then change their diet.medical science guys are dying from same disease they curing us from.fancy diagnostic names are becoming fashion like allergy another academic invention for what they dont know or understand.everything had a cause untill this cause is found and eliminated nothing works,but in some cases of prolonged candida it is too late,then medical science gets the blame for not keeping up with our wrong diet.
natalie

Saint-eustache, Canada

#16 Jun 28, 2012
dr fungus says wrote:
thats what happen when you highly educate somebody they dont have simple solutions they like to complicate it to prove their worth.chronic candida or yeast infection is a mother of almost any disease and diverticulitis as well.try to tell that to science worshipping masses,who would rather die under doctors control just for the taste of it then change their diet.medical science guys are dying from same disease they curing us from.fancy diagnostic names are becoming fashion like allergy another academic invention for what they dont know or understand.everything had a cause untill this cause is found and eliminated nothing works,but in some cases of prolonged candida it is too late,then medical science gets the blame for not keeping up with our wrong diet.
Go troll somewhere else
stomach stuff1

Portland, OR

#17 Jun 28, 2012
Deb from Mich wrote:
I just searched Google for "diverticulitis causes." The following page seems to make the most sense to me. I've included the text from that page.
http://womenshealth.about.com/cs/diverticulit...
What Causes Diverticular Disease?
Doctors believe a low-fiber diet is the main cause of diverticular disease. The disease was first noticed in the United States in the early 1900's. At about the same time, processed foods were introduced to the American diet. Many processed foods contain refined, low-fiber flour. Unlike whole-wheat flour, refined flour has no wheat bran. Diverticular disease is common in developed or industrialized countries--particularly the United States, England, and Australia--where low-fiber diets are common. The disease is rare in countries of Asia and Africa, where people eat high-fiber vegetable diets. Fiber is the part of fruits, vegetables, and grains that the body cannot digest. Some fiber dissolves easily in water (soluble fiber). It takes on a soft, jelly-like texture in the intestines. Some fiber passes almost unchanged through the intestines (insoluble fiber). Both kinds of fiber help make stools soft and easy to pass. Fiber also prevents constipation.
Constipation makes the muscles strain to move stool that is too hard. It is the main cause of increased pressure in the colon. The excess pressure causes the weak spots in the colon to bulge out and become diverticula.
Diverticulitis occurs when diverticula become infected or inflamed. Doctors are not certain what causes the infection. It may begin when stool or bacteria are caught in the diverticula. An attack of diverticulitis can develop suddenly and without warning.
--------
The above text seems to agree with my theory that the foods we eat (processed foods) are the major factor in why people get diverticulitis.
Not necessarily! I ate a diet rich in fruits and fresh vegs and lots of fiber until I started gettting sick. Then slowly I had to take things out of my diet to stay well and working. Eventually I was on a low residual diet and having regular bouts of div. Eventually the antibiotics stop working. Once you get it it only gets worse. It is the nature of this disease. I am one and a half weeks out of my lap surgery. Had sigmoid removed. It only goes up from here.
Georgia

United States

#18 Jun 28, 2012
Hi stomach stuff,
Most everyone that is a regular poster and has listened to the many stories from people who post here agree with you totally. Deb or Deb from Mich--whichever, all the same person, goes by her own beliefs. She does get carried away by her posts and does not like it if you don't agree with her, as you can tell by this thread. Everybody is different and everybody has their own opinion. There are many different triggers for the attacks we all have.

Since: Jun 12

Location hidden

#19 Jun 28, 2012
I eat more vegetables than probably any of my siblings. They're all fine. My sister has never had bowel problems and her diet is crap. However, I do have a much more high strung nervous system. I run. I'm not overweight. I eat a lot of fiber. It wasn't an issue with low fiber for me. For me it was undoubtedly chronic stress followed by a peak of stress followed by recurring attacks and then a rupture. Maybe a bacterial overgrowth of which I'm not aware. That's always possible.
Georgia

United States

#20 Jun 29, 2012
Hi Applecake,
My attacks were caused by stress too. After I retired from my stressful job my attacks just quit. I didn't figure it out until a year and a half later. My attacks had been coming every 4 months like clockwork. They were at least almost always mild attacks. Food has never been a trigger either. I always have eaten anything I want. They also say Diverticulitis can run in families and both my grandparents had it, although I never remember them being sick from it.

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