What diet?

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What diet?

Postby ironpanda88 » 02 Jun 2018, 05:08

Hey guys, I've had a fissure since around November last year and whilst it occasionally heals for a week at most, it never really goes away and the severity of it varies.
When I started having the fissure, as I'm sure you all know it's excruciating but my doctor gave me some GTN (Glyceryl trinitrate rectal ointment) to which I'm still using and it does help but just as I start to think "no pain, no blood, this could be it this time" I feel a sharp scrape and low and behold there's a little bit of blood on the toilet paper.

I went to see my doctor recently and asked to be referred to a specialist about surgery and he said that the side effects such as soiling, letting gas go uncontrollably would be quite embarrassing and I'm still fairly young and single. I know that sounds like a stupid excuse not to get it done but I'd like to try every possibility before considering surgery so I mentioned about my diet to my doctor and he said to experiment with it so...

On weekdays:

For breakfast I have:
Overnight oats with low fat natural yoghurt, semi skimmed milk, raspberries, blueberries and 1tsp of honey.

For a mid-morning snack, I usually have either a plum or an apple.

For lunches I usually have salads which consist of spinach, cucumber, avocado, spring onion, walnuts, flaked almonds, fish (varies from mackeral, kipper, tuna, salmon and prawns) and half a pepper.

I don't really have a set plan for dinner, it's really whatever I fancy but generally quite a healthy meal.

On weekends:

For breakfast I have Shredded wheat with semi skimmed milk and a small sprinkle of sugar

For lunch I usually have a sandwhich (from wholemeal bread) that usually tuna, but sometimes ham, prawns, salmon, kipper & mackeral, spinach and low fat mayonaise.

Again for dinner, there's no set plan but usually quite healthy.


I've seen this thread where they talk about lowering fiber and eating more so maybe I could be having too much fiber?

So with all this in mind what sort of diet do you have and does it help?

Things to note:
I tend to drink 3-4 pints (1.5L to 2L) of water a day
I usually have 1 bowel movement a day; more often than not, in the morning.
I have 1 Laxido orange a day (in the morning) to help soften the stool (I have gone up to 3 before but I started to depend on it, 1 seems to work fine at the moment)
I've tried using Vaseline (petroleum jelly) to lubricate the area for a better exit but felt that it's a bit counter intuitive to try and heal a fissure by sticking your finger up there and opening the anus.
I'm not sure if this has an effect but I work in an office and whilst they are very good office chairs, I do sit down a lot. Probably for most of the day. Could that have an effect?

I know this is a lot to read but thanks in advance for any help / information you can provide :)
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Re: What diet?

Postby patience_and_healing » 05 Jun 2018, 00:23

Your diet certainly sounds very healthy. Good on you for sticking to it! Your description on sitting rang a bell for me. Last year I worked a full time job until July, and every single day I came home feeling like my butt was on fire. I would just rush to a sitz bath for some relief. After that I have been working part time from home and the relief from not having to sit all the time is immense. I honestly think it was interfering with healing to constantly have the area under pressure.

One thing you could try is having a hot water bottle that you can fill with warm water and sit on that. Cover it with something if you're worried about others noticing. That way you can have blood flow to the area and sit as well. If it's an option for you, ask for a sit to stand desk so you can get pressure off your bum on and off.
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Re: What diet?

Postby Hedgehogbum » 05 Jun 2018, 02:41

Hi iron panda,

Your diet sounds very similar to mine, and I find it is the best diet for soft BMs. Whenever I change my diet, disaster occurs. We are all very individual, but if you pay attention to what you eat and what your stools are like, you will find the best combination for you. Unfortunately in my experience, diet was not enough to repair my fissure, but it is essential for me to stick to this healthy diet to maintain stool consistency and promote healing.

As for the gas and leakage, it is honestly so rare that I don't know why doctors place so much importance on it. I had a LIS in March and I can honestly say that I haven't experienced any form of leakage whatsoever. Quite the opposite in fact. I wish it was even looser down there to be honest.

I know it sounds counter-intuitive to put something up there for a better exit, but I'm finding that the more I put up there, the better I heal. In fact, there are posters on this board who use self-dilation as a technique to promote healing. Did you find the helped at all? It's supposed to be similar to putting lip balm on chapped lips, i.e. it makes it easier to open your mouth without pain.
Oct 17: anal fissure
Feb 18: 6 weeks rectogesic
Mar 18 LIS
Post-op retears: 8 weeks, 13 weeks
[i]Aug 18:healed!!!!
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Re: What diet?

Postby proctorabbit » 05 Jun 2018, 02:47

YMMV but several people I have spoken to recently have had some luck when they tried a paleo diet. In particular the additional oil/fat helped lubricate the area, and veges/salad gave them enough roughage to remain regular but not so much that they were passing excessive amounts of solid waste.

Personally I'd be removing all nuts (ouch), and dairy doesn't agree with me so that would be gone too. Also.... maybe try replacing the low-fat yoghurt/milk with full cream versions.

Keep up with the GTN. It's one of the least-invasive options, otherwise a lot of people have success with botox injections.

Start a diary and let us know how you go!!
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Re: What diet?

Postby ironpanda88 » 05 Jun 2018, 14:55

Thanks for the info guys! I'm hoping I may have solved a big cause of my fissure and is that I'm rushing. My bowel movements tend to happen in the morning, before work and I'm in the mindset of 'the quicker I can get to work, the quicker I get home' so I strain for the stool to come out quicker. As a test, I stopped myself from going to the toilet until mid-day, I was still at work so I did strain a little as I don't like being away from my desk for ages, but once I got home and had my dinner I relaxed, went to the toilet and used some Vaseline and all was fine. Tiniest bit of blood but not enough to cause concern. I think I just need to retrain my body to go at an appropriate time.

@patience_and_healing
Thanks! I feel like I'm slowly falling out of the healthy eating though but maybe I need that, I know it sounds silly but could there be a thing of eating too healthy? Anything with a red label (not sure if you have something like this where you're from) I stay away from so that pretty much rules out red meat, some fish and (nearly?) all processed foods.

My office is predominantly male so sitting on a hot water bottle would raise some eyebrows and would need explaining but I have asked for a stand up desk! Sadly I'm on a waiting list though :(

@Hedgehogbum
Yeah I've found that changing my diet is a big no no as well. Having said this, I am adding / changing things slowly as a test. I remember when my fissure started, sugar was a big no no, even in fruit.

As I say above, I tried the Vaseline again today and it seemed to do the job :) and thanks for the info about the surgery, will keep it in mind :)

@proctorabbit
Ahh I've never heard of the paleo diet but from a quick read it sounds good! I'm starting to add a bit more oily, fatty foods into my diet anyway :)

I thought nuts were quite a good source of fiver? Thanks, will try a fully fat yogurt maybe?

Good call on the diary, I can look back and see what has worked and what hasn't :)
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Re: What diet?

Postby patience_and_healing » 12 Jun 2018, 12:40

Straining during a BM is probably one of the worst things one can do. What happens during straining is that the anal canal becomes constricted instead of relaxed. As a result, you are forcing a BM through a smaller opening, resulting in damage. Try a step stool to make things easier to evacuate. Also, it's not a good idea to suppress the urge for a BM because that confuses the body and then it's less likely to produce an urge at the correct time. If you find yourself rushing, wake up a bit earlier so you have enough time for a BM. Try playing some relaxing music in the bathroom. Anything to make you stop rushing. Use the abdomen muscles and diaphragm to help a BM come along, with some deep breathing. Never hold your breath because that will result in straining.

Red meat is generally accepted to be bad for fissures because it produces harder BMs, but that varies from person to person. I'm not familiar with a red tag system, but I assume that avoiding processed foods can't be a bad thing. Just make sure your weight remains at a healthy level.
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