By Dr. Manpreet Grewal

Diverticular disease begins with the formation of small pockets, called diverticuli, in the wall of the colon, a condition known as diverticulosis. These areas of the colon are not as thick-walled as the rest of the colon, so if your colon is overworked because you are dehydrated, you are not getting enough fiber in your diet, or you experience a lot of stress, your colon can become spastic., that increased pressure causes areas of weakness in your colon walls to rupture, get inflamed, and release bacteria into otherwise sterile areas of our body. Complications from diverticulosis can include rectal bleeding, called diverticular bleeding, and diverticulitis, when these pockets become infected.

In order to prevent diverticulitis, drink plenty of fluids, ensure your diet contains the recommended amount of fiber, and minimize stress in your life.

A common misperception that many patients have is that nuts and seeds can get stuck in diverticuli and cause irritation and discomfort. However, studies show that diverticuli are not caused by nuts or seeds, so there is no need to avoid these foods.

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