Can You Have Chocolate With Diverticulitis? | CoachSweetTooth

Have you been diagnosed with diverticulitis and are wondering whether you can still indulge in chocolate without worsening your condition? I’m here to help.

The answer is yes, you can have chocolate with diverticulitis, but in moderation. Chocolate is not directly associated with causing diverticulitis. However, it’s not a high-fiber food. Therefore, it's important to incorporate other high-fiber foods into your diet to prevent flare-ups.

While chocolate can be enjoyed in moderation, it's important to balance it with other high-fiber foods. I have researched and consulted diet experts regarding the relationship between chocolate and diverticulitis, so if you’re wondering whether or not to eat chocolate, I’m here to help. Read on if you want to explore the topic of whether or not you can have chocolate with diverticulitis and what you should keep in mind when it comes to your diet.

Table of contents


Can You Have Chocolate With Diverticulitis?

If you have been diagnosed with diverticular disease or are at risk of developing diverticulitis, you can still have chocolate in moderation. This is because chocolate is not directly associated with causing diverticulosis or diverticulitis.

That said, chocolate is not a high-fiber food, and a diet consisting mainly of chocolate products will not provide you with the necessary fiber to prevent diverticulitis. You’ll need to incorporate high-fiber foods to help you prevent flare-ups.

That said, diet experts at Cleveland Clinic recommend that people with diverticulitis go easy on fiber during a flare-up. Once the flare-up subsides, you can gradually increase your fiber intake.  A high-fiber diet can help prevent diverticulitis and promote overall digestive health.

Impact of Chocolate on Diverticulitis

While there is no clear evidence that chocolate causes diverticulitis, it’s generally recommended that people with diverticular disease limit their intake of high-fat and high-sugar foods. Chocolate, especially milk chocolate, is often high in both fat and sugar, which can exacerbate symptoms of diverticulitis.

However, dark chocolate, which is lower in sugar and higher in cocoa solids, maybe a better option for people with diverticular disease. Dark chocolate has been shown to have some health benefits, including reducing inflammation and improving blood flow.

If you do choose to eat chocolate, it’s important to do so in moderation and pay attention to how your body reacts. If you notice any symptoms of diverticulitis after eating chocolate, such as abdominal pain or bloating, you may want to avoid it in the future.

Symptoms of Diverticulitis

Diverticulitis is a condition in which small pockets or pouches called diverticula form in the lining of the digestive tract, usually in the colon. When these pouches become inflamed or infected, it can cause a range of symptoms, including:

  • Abdominal pain or tenderness, usually on the lower left side
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fever
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Bloating or gas

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Diverticulitis can be a serious condition if left untreated, and your doctor can help you manage your symptoms and prevent complications.

Dietary Considerations for Diverticulitis

If you have diverticulitis, you may need to make some dietary changes to manage your symptoms. A healthy, balanced diet is important for everyone but is especially crucial for people with diverticulitis.

Here are some dietary considerations to keep in mind:

Fiber Intake

Fiber is an essential nutrient that helps keep your digestive system healthy. However, during a diverticulitis flare-up, you may need to limit your fiber intake to give your digestive system a chance to rest and heal. Your doctor may recommend a low-fiber or clear liquid diet for a few days to help ease your symptoms.

Once your symptoms improve, you can gradually start adding high-fiber foods back into your diet. Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, and legumes are all good sources of fiber. Aim for 25 to 35 grams of fiber per day, but gradually increase your fiber intake to avoid digestive discomfort.

Foods to Avoid

Certain foods may trigger diverticulitis symptoms or make them worse. These include processed foods, high-fat foods, and foods that are low in fiber.

Some people with diverticulitis may also need to avoid certain high-fiber foods, such as nuts and seeds if they cause discomfort.

Clear Liquid Diet

During a diverticulitis flare-up, your doctor may recommend a clear liquid diet for a few days to help rest your digestive system.

This type of diet includes clear liquids such as broth, fruit juices without pulp, ice chips, and gelatin. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully and gradually reintroduce solid foods back into your diet.


Some people with diverticulitis may benefit from a low FODMAP diet, which limits certain types of carbohydrates that can cause digestive discomfort.

This type of diet involves avoiding foods such as wheat, onions, garlic, and some fruits and vegetables. If you're considering a low FODMAP diet, be sure to talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian first.

Foods to Avoid with Diverticulitis

If you have diverticulitis, your diet can significantly manage your symptoms. Certain foods can worsen or trigger symptoms, while others can help alleviate them.

It’s essential to avoid foods that can cause inflammation or irritation in the digestive tract.

Processed, High-Fat, and Sugary Foods

Processed, sugary, and high-fat foods should be avoided as much as possible. These types of foods can cause inflammation, which can lead to diverticulitis symptoms.

Processed meats, such as bacon and sausage, should also be avoided as they’re high in fat and can cause inflammation.

Spicy Foods

Highly spicy foods should also be avoided as they can irritate the digestive tract. Red meat should be limited or avoided as it is high in fat and can be difficult to digest.

Refined grains, such as white bread and pasta, should also be avoided as they are low in fiber and can cause constipation.

High-sugar Snacks and Drinks

Other foods to avoid if you’re diagnosed with diverticulitis include high-sugar foods and drinks like candy and soda. These can cause inflammation and can worsen diverticulitis symptoms. Instead, opt for natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup.

Safe Foods for Diverticulitis

If you have diverticulitis, you may wonder what foods are safe. While certain foods you should avoid, there are also many that are safe to eat and can help you manage your symptoms.

Eating a diet that is high in fiber is important for people with diverticulitis. Fiber helps to keep your digestive system healthy and can help prevent flare-ups.

Fiber also helps promote regular bowel movements and can help prevent constipation, which can worsen diverticulitis symptoms. Leafy green vegetables, such as spinach and kale, are great sources of fiber and are safe to eat with diverticulitis.

In addition to leafy greens, there are many other foods that are high in fiber and safe to eat with diverticulitis. Whole-grain bread, fresh fruits, and raw vegetables are all great options. When choosing fruits and vegetables, be sure to choose ones that are ripe and easy to digest.

It's also important to drink plenty of water when you have diverticulitis. Drinking water can help keep your digestive system healthy and can prevent constipation. Aim to drink at least 64 ounces of water per day, more if you're active.

While many foods are safe to eat with diverticulitis, foods that are high in fat, such as chocolate, should be avoided during a flare-up. Additionally, foods that are made from refined flour and sugars, such as candy and white bread, should also be avoided.

Diverticulitis and Lifestyle Choices

If you’re one of the many people with diverticulitis, you know how important it’s to take care of your digestive health. Lifestyle choices can play a significant role in preventing flare-ups and reducing inflammation.

Adopt a Habit to Maintain Regular Bowel

One of the most important steps you can take is to maintain regular bowel habits. Constipation and straining during bowel movements can put extra pressure on the large intestine, potentially causing diverticulitis flare-ups or even bowel obstruction.

Eating a high-fiber diet and staying hydrated can help keep your bowel movements regular and prevent these issues.

Stress Management and Regular Exercise

Regular exercise and stress management techniques can help reduce inflammation and keep your body healthy. It's also important to avoid smoking and limit alcohol consumption, as these habits can contribute to poor digestive health.

Reduce Sugar Intake

When it comes to diet, reducing sugar intake can be especially important for diverticulitis patients. Foods that are high in refined sugars and flour, such as chocolate, can trigger severe abdominal pain and other symptoms during a flare-up.

While chocolate can be a delicious treat, it's best to avoid it during a flare-up and limit your intake overall.

Key Takeaways

  • Chocolate is not directly associated with diverticulitis, but it's also not a high-fiber food.
  • Chocolate products won’t offer you fiber to prevent diverticulosis or diverticulitis.
  • Avoiding high-fiber options like whole grains during an active flare-up is recommended.
  • If you are experiencing a flare-up, stick to a low-fiber diet until your symptoms improve.
  • Once symptoms improve, you can gradually reintroduce fiber-rich foods into your diet.


Lori Gilmore

Lori Gilmore

Lori has been a Culinary Arts instructor for twenty years. She has taught in the public school setting, at the collegiate level and through adult continuing education as well as running several cooking and baking camps for children. She has participated in several cooking, cake & chocolate contests and has been well recognized. She has raised thousands of dollars for charities using the byline “Saving the World one Cupcake at a Time”. Additionally, she has had several articles regarding food published in various magazines.

Read More About Lori Gilmore