Many people after the surgeries or operations, or people who have digestive issues are suggested the “Clear Liquid diets”. What are these? It is very clear from the name itself, but let’s not judge a book by its cover.
If you are on a clear liquid diet, gather some more information here with us.
What is a clear liquid diet?
The diet which includes only the intake of liquids and that too the “clear” liquid is termed as a clear liquid diet. But, what do we mean by the word “clear”? It means what you can see through.
The fluids which are devoid of the pulpy part or portions of any solid food come under this category. Such fluids leave no residue and are easily digestible.
Such a diet is usually prescribed when some medical process needs to be done or has been done. Also, it has been considered as a pre-requisite for some tests such as colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy and several X-rays.
But, it is to be noted that the clear liquid diets lag behind in the nutritional aspect. It may carry the salts and minerals but does not supply the calories to your body for enough energy. Hence, it should not be continued for too long.
The healthcare providers may instruct you to take clear liquid diets according to your medical condition. Always follow him/her!
Clear liquid diet foods
What should we consider and what shall we avoid? There is a lot o confusion regarding the liquid diet. The orange juice is not see-through, but still it is suggested in clear liquid diet.
Milk and buttermilk are fluids and very healthy for the body, but they are avoided in the clear liquid diet. Why? What is the criterion? What shall we take then? Just have a look at the points below-
- Milk and milk products should be avoided because though they are fluids, but they don’t have the clarity. And, the calorie content is high. The creamy content in them makes them not apt to be considered in the liquid diet plan.
- Go for the clear juices, for instance, juices of apples, cranberry, grapes etc. The citrus fruit juices can also be considered but, they should be strained. The pulpy part should be removed and only the clear juice should be taken. The sweeteners and the salts can be added in appropriate amounts.
- Beverages such as tea or coffee should be made without the cream or milk.
- Water is always welcome in the clear liquid diet. It forms the major part of this diet.
- Some fizzy drinks which are soft such as the lemon-lime soda without cola or root beer can also be considered.
- Clear soup broths, bouillon or consommé are also preferable.
- Popsicles are my favourite food in this diet food! They are the water based frozen snack with the yummiest flavours.
- Hard candies and the gelatines without the fruit part are popular.
- Some vegetable juices such as the tomato juice should be taken after straining properly.
- You can also take honey or use some lemon drops with it.
And, what should be avoided?
- Solid foods including bread, pasta, whole grains etc.
- Avoid vegetables and dairy products
- Avoid fruit juices with pulp and smoothies
- Noodles and rice soups
- Avoid meat and meat substitutes as well
- No fats and no oils need to be taken
Clear liquid diet ideas
Clear liquid diet can be quite tough to handle, but if you have been suggested the diet, you need to follow it. After all, it is for your own sake. You always cannot rely on a boring watery intake.
You need something which makes you pacified, though not as tasty as the solid food.
The vegetarians can have the vegetable juices which are properly strained. You can add simple salt or black salt according to your own taste. These are permissible up to some amount.
The non vegetarians can have the chicken stock in their refrigerators. Broths and strained soups are always a good option for taste and health maintenance.
Also, new interesting recipes keep on updating, even for the clear liquid diets. Try them out in order to make the liquids interesting. But, remember that any red, orange, blue or purple dye should not come in any of the liquids.
You can make lemon-lime. The touch of citrus fruits in your liquid diet fetches you a lot of nutrients! And, this is the time to have the popsicles as many as you like.
They come in variety of flavours, and not just this, for better results, you can make them at your home. The ones available in the market might have colours and dyes. This is, as we said before, harmful!
Clear liquid diet recipes
As I have talking about how to make the clear liquid diet interesting and tasty, I have for you some of the coolest recipes! You may like the idea, the flavour and of course, won’t find this diet plan boring.
- Bone broth
Many websites show this “bone broth” as a popular recipe for clear liquid diet. If you find it easy and interesting, what’s the harm in trying, right?
Take with you some of the common herbs you like and your favourite vegetables you wish to have the flavour of. Also, you would be requiring the bones (just for the flavour and nutrition).
Lamb bones are quite popular in this recipe. Even the Indian conventional food contains the recipe of clear soupmade by using lamb bones. If not possible, you can always go for any other marrow bone of your own choice.
Do you have a cast iron pot? If yes, take it out and put some olive oil in it. Add the chopped onions (about one or two bulbs finely chopped) and fry them on medium flame.
You must have chopped all the other vegetables, for example, carrots, celery etc. Also, have with you ginger and garlic along with the set of herbs.
As the onions turn a little brown, add the chopped vegetables. Stir them till they release some water and flavour, which goes into the broth.
Now, add bones and vinegar. Slowly add some cold water. Not too cold and icy!
Bring the contents to a boil and add the spices or herbs you wish to add. Simmer for about 3 to 4 hours. You can see the froth formation on the top. Can you?
Now, remove the froth formed as the superficial layer and add salt accordingly. Not according to the taste, but according to the health! Remember, you are on a clear liquid diet!
Let your golden pot of yummy food cool down and strain the contents. As it cools down, you can easily see the layer of fat being formed on the upper layer. Remove this and reheat for serving. After all, who likes a cold soup!
- High protein Fruit Drink
Get any commercial nutritional drink. Do not get any sort of extravagant drink. Get another half cup of sorbet and ginger ale. Do you know what sorbet is?
It is a frozen dessert made from the sweetened water. And, ginger ale is a drink. check it out on Google. Now, mix all the ingredients in a blender till you get a smooth clear drink. Strain, if needed.
- Fruit Fizz
Get some clear fruit juice- be it of apple, orange or any berry. It should be about a cup or 300ml. Get some sparkling water and ice cubes for a chilling experience.
Now, put all the ingredients in a blender and make slush. Or, you can blend the juice and ice, and then add the sparkling water.
Ultimately, you are going to get a drink which you will love as a part of clear liquid diet! You can thank me later on!
- Lemon Lime Slush
Take out the juice from one or two lemons. Strain and remove the pulp. Get some sparkling water and ice cubes. You can add sugar or honey to taste. Blend the contents and enjoy the chilly drink!
Clear liquid diet for colonoscopy
Colonoscopy is a technique which helps the healthcare provider to determine any damage or abnormality linked to your colon. The doctors use this technique to define the inner lining of the large intestine.
A thin tube called the colonoscope is used to look at the colon.
When you have to undergo the colonoscopy, the doctors will suggest you the clear liquid diet. The preparation of your gut is necessary so that the colonoscopy gives the best results.
- You can have black coffee or tea. This means that there is no contribution of milk and milk products. No, don’t use the powdered milk even.
- Fruit juices without pulp
- Strained vegetarian and non vegetarian soups
- Water and soda
- Gummy bears!
- Plain jelly
- Sports drinks
Are you ready?
Clear liquid diet menu
Menu says what you have to eat at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Liquids and liquids the whole days seem to me like a nightmare, but it is not. You can still enjoy the spice of life to some extent.
- In the morning, the fruit juices are the best to meet the daily nutritional requirements. Yes, you would not gain the calories, but vitamins and minerals play a part too!
- Have gelatine of about a cup
- You can also have some black tea with lemon extract or sugar or honey.
- Have the vegetable or meat soups. The soup should be clear and strained properly. No meat should be used in the soup. Rather, use stock or bones to prepare the broth.
- Have the sorbet or popsicles, of about half a cup
- Gelatine half a cup again
- If you didn’t have tea in breakfast, have it now.
- Consommé or strained fruit juice. Choose wisely! Try chicken noodle and French onion soup. You can also have the cheese soup which is allowed in clear liquid diet.
- Gummy bears or candies. Beware of the dyes used in the candies.
- Hot tea.
- Smooth and clear ice-creams!
Continuously drink water. Keep yourself hydrated!
Clear liquid diet for weight loss
When we take the “weight loss” in consideration as a reason for taking the clear liquid diet, then we can infer that we are talking about the reduced calories and fats.
Some may find the liquid diet disgusting for losing weight, while some are practicing this diet in order to achieve the effective weight loss results.
Liquid diet is quite challenging, but it has some benefits as well. The gastrointestinal problems evade. A stable electrolytic balance in the body is maintained and hydration aspect is given attention.
Some people who are not able to take the solid foods through throat, mouth, oesophagus etc. are helped through this clear liquid diet. The excess of toxins in our body are removed and the calorie intake is restricted.
While it has some benefits, it has some demerits as well. Since the calorie intake is minimal or even less than that, the body suffers from weakness and tiredness.
Liquid diet plans should be followed only when you have the utmost need and you know how to follow such a diet. Here is a sample:
- Take a glass of warm water with lemon in the early morning.
- After an hour or two, you can have slush or smoothie made from the apple.
- At about noon or even before that, have green tea with no sugar or milk.
- In lunch, have the soup made up of pulses. Moong dal soup can be made seasoned with coriander.
- Have buttermilk after the soup.
- Again have green tea.
- During the brunch, you can have the citrus fruit juice with no added sugar. You can use honey instead.
- At the time of dinner, go for the vegetable soups and warm milk. Yes, in liquid diet plan for weight loss, you can take milk. But, do not take in excess. Just a cup is enough.
- Before going to bed, you can have the warm water with lemon.
Be careful about the time period of your liquid diet. Too long will make you feel nauseated and weak! We do not want that.
Clear liquid diet for diverticulitis
Diverticulitis is a medical condition when the colon experiences tremendous pain and inflammation. The bowel function gets completely disturbed, and in such a scenario, you should know what to eat and what to keep off.
An easily digestible diet is preferred and the clear liquid diet hits the first position.
- Consume only the clear fluids and not a pinch of food
- Broths and soups are preferred
- Fruit juices and beverages without milk products are also important
- Flavoured gelatines and ice pops should be consumed. Remember to avoid the dyes and water content should be high.
- Remove the pulps from jellies and juices. Have soda and sports drinks.
Bariatric clear liquid diet
If you have undergone a bariatric surgery, then you must be on a complete clear liquid diet. All you require is to stay hydrated and dilute. You have to constantly sip up the fluids and avoid the extremes.
- Have light juices and do not go for sugar. Use honey.
- Broths made of chicken or vegetables is suitable
- Water and carbonated water is good
- Ice pops and candies
- Coffee or tea without dairy element
- Clear fruit juices!
This diet will last for a few days and no longer than a week. The lack in nutrition is the basic idea behind this concept. These diets are never recommended for longer periods of time and hence, have limited popularity.
A clear liquid diet aids in the recovery process and that is why the doctors recommend this to the patients. If you are on one, do not worry. Just a few days and you will be back to the delicious gourmet.