A Clear Liquid Diet Is Not For Weight Loss

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By Tess Thompson

There are times when there is a need for keeping the stomach and intestines empty, such as before medical tests like a sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, certain types of X-Rays, or other imaging tests. The same may be necessary before and after certain types of surgeries. In such cases, doctors prescribe the specific diet that can be consumed for a day before the specific procedure. In most cases, the recommended option is a clear, liquid diet.

However, a clear liquid diet may need to be adopted in cases of severe diarrhea and vomiting. Severe diarrhea can lead to expulsion of a large amount of water from the body, causing dehydration. Accompanied by vomiting, it may even lead to a life-threatening situation, if not addressed. A clear liquid diet becomes a necessity in these cases to be able to maintain the amount of body liquids and to provide the basic nutrients to the body.

Clear liquids do not strain the stomach or the intestines and are therefore easily digested. Knowing what the clear liquid diet can do can help in managing symptoms of mild diarrhea and vomiting at home.

There is a basic rule that governs what you can consume as part of a clear liquid diet. If you can see through the liquid, it is fit for consumption as part of the clear liquid diet-- regardless of whether the liquid is colored or colorless.

A typical liquid diet would be comprised of any of the following beverages, soups and desserts:

  • Clear and strained juices such as apple juice, cranberry and grape or fruit punch. You will be required to strain citrus juices.
  • Weak tea without milk and sugar.
  • Mineral, bubbly or plain water.
  • Soft drinks like lemon lime soda, club soda, or clear sports drinks (no colas or root beer).
  • Bouillon, broths, fat-free consommé and strained vegetable soup.
  • Fruit ices without milk or fruit pieces, plain gelatin desserts and popsicles.
  • Jelly and honey.

A full liquid diet is recommended after you see signs of improvement. A full liquid diet includes both clear and opaque liquid foods like milk, milkshakes, ice cream, pudding, smooth, cooked cereals like oatmeal, and other foods that have been thinned and blended with milk, broths or fruit and vegetable juice.

It has to be kept in mind that although you may lose weight while on a liquid diet, it is primarily not a weight loss plan. A clear liquid diet is a temporary arrangement to handle typical situations only. It is extremely short on various nutrients that are necessary for energy, and should not be continued for more than 72 hours without medical supervision. Weight loss is best accomplished with natural weight loss plans that include exercise and balanced diet that gives essential nutrients necessary for energy and metabolism.



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