Can you eat sourdough bread with diverticulitis?

In this brief article, we are going to answer the question “can you eat sourdough bread with diverticulitis?” and discuss the risks and benefits of eating sourdough bread with diverticulitis. 

Can you eat sourdough bread with diverticulitis?

No, you should not eat sourdough bread with diverticulitis. Sourdough bread is in most cases made with whole wheat flour or another flour rich in fibers. A high fiber diet is not recommended with diverticulitis (1,2,3).

When a patient suffers from diverticulitis, a liquid diet is recommended by most healthcare professionals. The recommended diet should be optimally prescribed by a dietitian or health professional. It may depend on your personal conditions (3).

Diverticulitis can be caused by several factors, such as inflammation, infections, the use of antibiotics, immunosuppression and genetic factors, including dietary factors and lifestyle (1). 

What is the difference between diverticulosis and diverticulitis?

Diverticulosis, or asymptomatic diverticular disease, is an intestinal disease characterized by the formation of diverticula, that is, an herniation condition of the intestinal muscular tissue. A diet low in fiber is one of the causes of a high prevalence of this disease (1).

Diverticulitis occurs by the inflammation of a diverticulum, which can be caused when a diverticulum is obstructed by faeces. It can lead to bleeding, intestinal obstruction and other complications (1, 3).

What are the risks of eating sourdough bread with Diverticulitis?

The risks of eating sourdough bread with diverticulitis is the need of a prolonged treatment and the risk of an aggravation of the inflammatory state. Diverticulitis can cause nausea, abdominal pain, bleeding, abscess and fistula (5).

During diverticulitis inflammation, antibiotics should be prescribed, as well as a few days of a liquid diet and the ingestion of probiotics, which are microorganisms that promote gut health (1, 3, 5). Aggravation can lead to hospitalization and surgery.

What are the benefits of eating sourdough bread with Diverticulosis?

The benefits of eating sourdough bread with diverticulosis are that sourdough bread is rich in dietary fibers, which may improve the symptoms of diverticulosis, or diverticular disease. 

In addition, sourdough bread contains many compounds that may help in the healing and treatment of inflammations, as well as in its prevention (4).

It is known that a healthy gut microbiota may also favor patients suffering from diverticulitis. Sourdough bread may contribute to a healthy gut microbiota, as it contains probiotic microorganisms, including lactic acid bacteria and yeasts.

Although most of these probiotics are killed during the high heat baking processes, they leave health-promoting compounds which are called posbiotics. 

During the fermentation of sourdough, the carbohydrates are converted by the action of native microorganisms, which are dozens of bacteria and yeast species, into organic acids, vitamins and bioactive amino acids, bacteriocins and oligosaccharides.

These compounds facilitate the growth of probiotics in the human intestines, which help alleviate the symptoms of diverticulosis (1,3,4).

What is the recommended diet for a patient with Diverticulitis?

The recommended diet for a patient with diverticulitis is a liquid diet or a few days of rest, without the ingestion of foods, as prescribed by a medical health professional (5).

What is the recommended diet to prevent diverticulitis?

To prevent diverticulitis, the ingestion of at least 23 g of dietary fibers per day is recommended. Food containing fibers, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, should be included in the diet (1,2,3).

Fiber supplements can also be used, such as lactulose, Metamucil or bran tablets, in addition to food or as a source of fibers in the diet (2).

Some fiber-rich foods are berries, apples with skin, beans, peas, cooked sweet potatoes and fiber-rich cereals (3).

A healthy lifestyle with the practice of exercises and keeping a low body weight also help to reduce the risks of diverticulitis (1). 

What are the Health Benefits of Sourdough Bread?

Here are a few sourdough bread advantages supported by research (4):

It’s beneficial for your digestive system

As a result of the fermentation process, sourdough bread may have more prebiotic and probiotic-like qualities, which benefit gut health. The sourdough bread prepared with rye flour enhanced the number of beneficial gut bacteria. 

Choose whole grain sourdough bread for added gut-friendly advantages since whole grains have more fiber than processed grains.

It may improve digestion

While sourdough bread contains gluten, frequent sourdough intake may aid in better gluten digestion. The fermentation procedure for sourdough bread changes the wheat’s enzyme composition and may help prevent negative effects from gluten. 

People with celiac disease, who are unable to consume gluten, should not yet be advised to eat sourdough bread, but those who are gluten-sensitive may choose to speak with their doctor or a dietician to find out whether they may be able to eat sourdough bread. 

Other research has shown that sourdough’s lactic acid bacteria may even assist to control allergic reactions, inflammatory reactions, and autoimmune illnesses.

It facilitates healthy aging

It may have a significant role in fostering good aging. According to research, older persons had a decreased chance of developing diabetes, cancer, and heart disease when they regularly consumed whole-wheat sourdough bread.

It helps maintain healthy blood sugars

When you consume carbs, the blood glucose normally rises as they are digested, but sharp fluctuations in blood glucose might raise the risk of developing chronic conditions like diabetes. 


In this brief article, we answered the question “can you eat sourdough bread with diverticulitis?” and discussed the risks and benefits of eating sourdough bread with diverticulitis. 


  1. Strate, Lisa L., and Arden M. Morris. Epidemiology, pathophysiology, and treatment of diverticulitis. Gastroenterol, 2019, 156, 1282-1298.
  2. Ünlü, Cagdas, et al. A systematic review of high-fibre dietary therapy in diverticular disease. Int j colorectal dis, 2012, 27,  419-427.
  3. Eating, Diet, & Nutrition for Diverticular Disease.  National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).
  4. Akamine, Ingrid Teixeira, Felipe RP Mansoldo, and Alane Beatriz Vermelho. Probiotics in the Sourdough Bread Fermentation: Current Status. Fermentation, 2013, 9, 90.
  5. Thompson AE. Diverticulosis and diverticulitis. Jama. 2016 Sep 13;316(10):1124-.

Was this helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!