Fiber is the undigested portion of fruits, vegetables, and grains. A low fiber diet limits these foods in the diet. As a result, less undigested material passes through the colon, and stools become less bulky.

A low fiber diet may be recommended for a number of conditions or situations. It is sometimes referred to as a limited fiber diet.


Reasons your healthcare provider may prescribe a low-fiber diet include:

  • You have a narrowing of the intestines. It may be due to a tumor or an inflammatory disease such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
  • You’ve had bowel surgery.
  • You are undergoing treatment that damages or irritates the digestive system. For example, radiation can cause irritation.

Low-fiber diets are usually temporary. You can usually start adding more fiber to your diet after a short amount of time.

Diet details

A low-fiber diet limits the types of vegetables, fruits, and grains you can eat. Some of the foods that are allowed on a low fiber diet include milk, cheese, yogurt, meat, fish, and eggs. People with lactose intolerance should avoid milk and dairy products if they cause stomach pain or diarrhea.

The ability to digest food varies from person to person. A health professional may recommend a more or less restricted diet depending on the reasons for which it is being used.

If you are on a low fiber diet, be sure to read food labels. Foods you may not expect may contain fiber. For example, yogurt, ice cream, cereal, and even some drinks can contain fiber. Look for foods that contain no more than 1-2 grams of fiber per serving.

Avoid these foods and foods made from them:

  • Nuts, seeds, dried fruits and coconut.
  • Whole grains, popcorn, wheat germ and bran.
  • Brown rice, wild rice, oatmeal, muesli, crushed wheat, quinoa, bulgur and barley.
  • Dried beans, baked beans, lima beans, peas and lentils.
  • Strong peanut butter.
  • Fruits and vegetables, except as noted below.

Choose these products:

  • Tender meats, fish and poultry, ham, bacon, shellfish and lunch meats.
  • Eggs, tofu and creamy peanut butter.
  • Dairy products if tolerated.
  • White rice and pasta.
  • Baked goods made from refined wheat or rye flour, such as bread, cookies, pancakes, waffles, bagels, salty and crackers.
  • Hot and cold cereals containing less than 2 grams of dietary fiber per serving. Cereals made from rice cereal are often very low in fiber.
  • Canned or well cooked potatoes, carrots and green beans.
  • Regular tomato sauce.
  • Vegetable and fruit juices.
  • Bananas, melons, applesauce and canned peaches (no skins).
  • Butter, margarine, oils and salad dressings without seeds.

A typical menu might look like this:


  • Corn flakes with milk.
  • White toast, creamy peanut butter, jelly.
  • Fruit juice.
  • Coffee.

afternoon tea

  • Yogurt without seeds.
  • Water or other drink.

afternoon tea

  • Sandwich with turkey on white bread with mayonnaise.
  • Tomato soup.
  • canned peaches.
  • Milk or other drink.

afternoon tea

  • Cheese slices.
  • Salted crackers.
  • Water or other drink.


  • Baked fish.
  • Butter mashed potatoes.
  • Boiled carrots.
  • applesauce.
  • Milk or other drink.

Prepare all foods so that they are soft. Good cooking methods include simmering, simmering, simmering, steaming, and rising. Baking or microwave cooking in a sealed container is another option.

You may have fewer bowel movements and smaller stools on a low-fiber diet. To avoid constipation, you may need to drink more fluids. Drink plenty of water unless your healthcare provider tells you otherwise.


Eating a low fiber diet will limit your intestinal motility. It may help reduce diarrhea or other symptoms such as stomach pain. After a short time, you will be able to slowly reintroduce fiber into your diet again.


Because a low-fiber diet limits what you can eat, it can be difficult to meet your nutritional needs. You should only follow a low-fiber diet for as long as your health care provider tells you to.

If you need to follow this diet for a longer period of time, please consult a registered dietitian. A dietitian can help make sure you meet all of your nutritional needs.

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