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Clear Liquid Diet

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Apr 2, 2024.

What is a clear liquid diet?

A clear liquid diet is made up of clear liquids and foods that are liquid at room temperature. The clear liquid diet provides liquids, sugar, salt, and some nutrients until you can eat solid food. The clear liquid diet does not provide all the nutrients, vitamins, minerals, or calories that your body needs. Healthcare providers will tell you when you can start to eat regular foods.

Why do I need to be on a clear liquid diet?

You may need to be on a clear liquid diet before a test or surgery on your stomach or bowels (small and large intestines). You may also need this diet if you have nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or trouble eating solid food. Clear liquids are easily digested and do not put a strain on your stomach or intestines. They also help to keep your digestive tract empty. The digestive tract is the path that food takes through your body as it is digested.

What liquids and foods can I include?

What liquids and foods should I avoid?

What is sample menu for a clear liquid diet?

What are the risks of a clear liquid diet?

The clear liquid diet does not provide all the nutrients you need. You may need to drink a nutrition supplement if you have to follow this diet for more than 3 days. If you do not follow this diet, you may continue to have diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting if you were asked to follow this diet because of these problems.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare provider to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.