The clear liquid diet consists of clear fluid and juices that provide little residue and area easily absorbed. The clear liquids reduce bowel residue and provide fluids to ease thirst. The diet also provide certain salts and minerals and prevent dehydration. The clear liquid diet does not provide all the nutrients, vitamins, minerals, or calories that your body needs.

Characteristics of Clear Liquid Diet

  • This diet is used when one must severely restrict undigested material inClear Liquid Diet - Foods Allowed and Sample Menu gastrointestinal tract because of temporary decreased function.
  • Inadequate in all nutrients thus, prolonged use is not encouraged. It should not be used more than 3 days without supplementation.
  • Aims to provide fluids without stimulating extensive digestive processes and to relieve thirst and provide oral feedings that will promote gradual return to a normal intake of food.

Clear liquid diet is for preoperative or postoperative patients. Patients with inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract; in acute stages of many illnesses especially those with fever; or in condition when it is necessary to minimize fecal material (residue free).

Foods Allowed

The diet is composed of clear liquids. Small servings may be offered every 2 or 3 hours and at mealtime. Certain postoperative patients may be limited to tea and fat free broth for one or more meals.

  • Fruits – Strained  fruit juices
  • Soup – Fat free clear broth and bouillon
  • Sugar or sweets – Flavored and unflavored gelatin, popsicles, fruit ices (made without milk(, sugar, honey, syrup, hard candy
  • Fluids – Coffee, tea, carbonated beverages, fruit beverage drinks

Suggested Meal Pattern and Sample Menu

    • Fruit juice and/or broth
    • Gelatin
    • Tea or coffee
    • Fruit juice
    • Broth
    • Gelatin
    • Tea or coffee
    • Same as lunch
    • Fruit juice
    • Popsicle
    • Gelatin
    • Clear liquid nutritional support