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Interstitial Cystitis Elimination Diet

Start by following a beneficial diet for your bladder for two weeks. Then, slowly add up other foods to the diet in order to determine which of them increase IC symptoms and in what proportion. Try eating and drinking different things and keep record of those that cause you difficulties. Also keep record of how often you can eat different foods or drink different liquids. This will allow you to design a diet that suits you the best.

Step 1: prepare yourself

  • Review the list of foods and beverages in the food listing for IC/PBS.
  • Go over the two sections identified as “Beneficial for the bladder” and “Try it”.
  • Star with two personal lists of foods and beverages. One of the list will be called “I can eat it”. The other list will be called “May worsen my IC”.

Step 2: begin with foods and beverages that are beneficial for your bladder

  • Eat and drink what appears on the sections “Beneficial for your bladder”. Generally, those foods do not negatively affect patients with IC.
  • Set the objective of eating six small meals each day, instead of three more abundant meals.
  • Write down everything you eat and drink on your daily record. Also include vitamins, supplements, nutritional or weight reduction products.
  • Mark those foods that worsen your IC symptoms.
  • Add foods that do not worsen your CI symptoms on your “I can eat” list..
  • Include those foods that worsen your symptom on your “May worsen my IC” list.

Step 3: after a few weeks try eating foods on the “Try it” list

  • Slowly add foods to the “Try it” section. Only add one new thing at a time in small amounts. This will help you to determine if one specific food or beverage worsen your IC.
  • Try eating greater quantities of foods that do not worsen your symptoms. It is possible that you find out you can eat foods from the “Try it” list in small quantities without this worsening your IC symptoms.

Harmful foods from less to more


The following list includes foods that many patients with IC have classified in one of the following categories:

  • Less harmful (benefits for the bladder)
  • Can be eaten(Try it)
  • More harmful(caution)


The list is not a food guide or a food plan, instead it constitutes a tool to help patients with IC to determine, which foods are harmful, and which ones are beneficial.

Benefits for the bladder Try it Caution
Bebidasimg12 Water- Try until you find one suitable for you
Juice – blueberry, pear
Milk substitute –almonds,rice, Lactaid,
Milk shakes- vanilla
Tea- Chamomile, mint
None lactose cream substitute – check the label
Eggnog– without alcohol
Juice: – Not so sour orange,grapes, some apple, baby food
Coffee – de herbs,decaffeinated not so sour,toasted carobs
Soda – Root beer with ice(decaffeinated, none diet)
Sports beverages- try until you find one suitable for you (ex: Blue Gatorade)
Alcohol- it not only irritates the bladder, but it is also contraindicated with lots of IC medications
Water- with gas, vitamins,with flavor
Juice pulp- cranberries,orange, azai
Milk- chocolate, soy
Coffee– regular and decaffeinated
Tea– regular, green, herbs,iced tea
Sodas– colas, citric, orange,diet
Juice powders – such as Kool Aid, lemonade, orange, or powders to prepare iced tea Sport beverages
Energizing beverages-guarana, mate
Grainsimg11 Breads– corn bread+,oatmeal bread+, pita, potato bread, + white bread+,Italian sweet bread, whole meal bread (ex: Ezekiel)
Cereals- the majority of cereals without problematic ingredients, oatmeal cereal,rice cereal (warm or cold)
Salt cookies – corn
Grains- cuscus, semolina,millet, quinoa+, spelt
Flour- buckwheat, wheat
Breads– fermented mass
Salt cookies – without problematic ingredients
Grains– maca
Breads – made with unsafe ingredients or/and processed or fortified
Cereals – with too much preservatives, sweeteners,fortified products or artificial flavors
Flour– soy
Pasta – prepared or canned pasta
Rice– canned
Fats and nutsimg10 Dry fruits –almonds,cashews, peanuts
Butters– almonds, peanuts
Oils– Canola, coconut, corn,
salad dressing
homemade without problem ingredients
Nuts– macadamias,pecans, walnut
Mayonnaise Sesame pastaNuts –hazelnuts, pecans,pistachios
margarina – con sabor a manteca
Seeds– sesame seeds
Oils– Canola, coconut, corn,olive, peanut, sunflower, soy,sesame
Margarine Lard Salad dressings – Home made without problematic ingredients
Eggs, meats, fish and birdsimg9 Eggs+Birds – chickens+, turkey
Fish+Meat+Seafood– clams, crab meat(none canned), lobster,shrimp
Lamb Pork Protein powder – serum
Egg white Beef Liver– cow or chicken
Vegetarian hamburgers– without soy derived products
Beef– canned meat
Sandwich meats– liver cold meat, jam (fresh or boiled, without too many preservatives or artificial flavors)
Pancetta Anchovies Caviar Prosciutto Cold meats – without problematic ingredients
Smoked meats–mortadella,hot dogs, salami
Crab meat Canned Frankfurts Cold meats- the majority
Smoked fished Soy derived products- vegetable soy empanadas, protein powder, tofu
Farm products,cheese, frozen desserts.img8 Cheese– American,mozzarella, cheddar (soft),fetta, ricotta+, cheese in strips
Cream cheese Cottage cheese+ Ice creams+ – the majority
Milk+Milk substitutes –lactoides
Sugary powders – non citric or chocolate flavors
Rice Dream dissert –vanilla
Whipped cream – Cool Whip
Cheese- blue cheese, brie,parmesan, camembert,cheddar, edam,emmenthaler, gruyere,hard jack, Monterrey jack,parmesan (fresh and canned), Roquefort, Swiss stilton
Butter serum Sour cream- on baked potatoes or soups
Pizza- regular, chicken or garlic, vegetarian or made with white sauce, without peperoni
Sorbet Yogurt– blueberries,vanilla, natural
Cheese– processed, Cheez Whiz
Ice cream– caution with citric or chocolate flavors
Soy products –soy milk, soy cheese
Fruitsimg7 Apples– Gala, Fuji, Pink Lady
Apple puree– home made with Gala, Fuji or Pink Lady apple
Coco – without preservatives
Date- without preservatives
Apple puree- commercial or for infants
Damask Bananas Berries– blackberries,raspberries,
custard apple Cherries– fresh Maraschino
Citrus peel Currants Figs Mangos Cantaloupe– Crenshaw,sweet
Peaches Plums Raisins – brown
Berries– cranberries, the majority
Citrus fruits– lemons, lime,oranges, grapefruit
Dry fruits- with preservatives
Guavas Kiwis – Cantaloupe
Passion fruit Papaya Persimmon Pineapple Star fruit Raisins – golden
Vegetables and dry beansimg6 Asparagus Avocado Beans – broad beans,chickpeas, lentils, white beans, the majority of dry beansBeet Broccoli Brussel sprouts Cabbage Carrots+ Cauliflower Celery Scallions Wheat+ Cucumber Eggplant Green beans Leaves– sprouts, curled sprouts, kimbombo, Swiss chard, Spinach, Chinese cabbage
Lettuce and the majority of salads Leafs Mushrooms+ Olives – blacks
Parsley Beans – –greens+,peas, snow peas, split peas
potatoes+, white, sweetpotatoes squash Radish Rhubarb Turnip Pumpkin+, – summer, winter Zucchini
Beans– red beans, broad beans, black beans,
olives– green
Greens– escarole,dandelion, purslane, turnip leaf
Leek (cooked)Onions – white, red,cooked onion bulb, raw leafs
Tomatoes– low in calcium
Chili Onions– raw onion bulbs
Pickles Sauerkraut Soy beans –edamame,
tomatoes- tomato sauce,tomato juice
Soupsimg5 Soups and homemade soup broths –beef and allowed vegetables Soups– canned, low in sodium, organic soups(without problematic ingredients) Broths– in cubes, powder
Canned– the majority
Soups in packages – the majority
Snacksimg4 Almonds Carrots Celery Fried products (the regular ones) – corn, potatoes
Cookies– crackers or soup
Fruit bars –blueberries,pears
Milkshakes – vanilla
Oatmeal bars Peanuts Peanut butter Pop corn Salt cookies-regular
Donuts– frosted
Graham cookies Fruits and fruit bars Dry– –with safe ingredients
Pizza– regular, chicken and garlic, vegetarian or made with regular sauce, with no peperoni
French fries –(grilled seasoned)
Cake for dessert –fast food restaurants
Desserts and candiesimg3 Berries– –blueberriescakes– pancakes+, angel cake+, white/yellow homemade cake, carrotToppings– homemade vanilla caramel topping, carob,whipped cream
Little cookies– oatmeal+,Sugar shortcake+,
Cupcakes– carrot
Cheesecake Crème brulee Flan+Cakes – cream flan,homemade apple cake (with allowed apples), squash,
Gizzard– homemade zucchini bread+,
Candies– licorice
Maple syrup Cakes – regular almonds,pears,
Ice creams– mint, vanilla+,
Pudding– tapioca, vanilla+,rice vanilla+,
Sweeteners– golden sugar,honey+, sugar
Artificial sweeteners – Splenda (Sucralose)
Sweeties– candy
Chocolate- white
Ice cream- caramel,coconut, mango, mint,butter pecans
Sorbet- coconut
Cake– blueberries,cinnamon
Ice cream in a stick – some
Gizzards– bananas
Yogurt –ice cream
Artificial sweeteners – acesulfame K aspartame,NutraSweet, saccharine,Sweet-N- Low, sweet herb
Sweeties- red cinnamon
Ice cream- chocolate,coffee, rocky road
Sorbets- with problematic fruits
Cakes- pecans, sliced beef
Desserts- with problematic
dry fruitsFruit cakes
Spices, dressings and flavor enhancersimg2 English pepper Almond extract Anisette Basil Caraway seeds Cilantro Dill Fennel Garlic+ Mace Marjoram+ Oregano+ Poppy seed Rosemary Sage Salt in small amounts
Thyme Tarragon Vanilla extract
Black pepper Celery seeds Cilantro Cinnamon – powder
Citric acid – in small amounts
Cumin (small amounts)Dry parsley Dry chervil Ginger Lemon extract Mayonnaise Powdered malt Nutmeg Powdered onion
Orange extract Turmeric
Ascorbic acid Approved yeast BHA and BHT Benzoate Ketchup Bell pepper Cloves Powdered chili Hot radish Powdered curry Hydrolyzed protein Meat softener Miso Mustard Bell pepper´s oleoresin Bell pepper Pickles Red sweet pepper Soy sauce Tamarind Vinegar Worcestershire Sauce MSG– Monosodium glutamate
Metabisulfite Sulfite
Fiber supplementsimg1 Acacia fiber Benefiber Metamucil – regular psyllium
bulk – not sugar free
Colace Metamusil-cinnamon ice creams Metamusil – orange, berries explosion
Psyllium fiber – sugar free due to the presence of artificial sweeteners