Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center - Health Library

Health Library Home>Wellness Centers>Food & Nutrition>Article

Clear Liquid Diet

A clear liquid diet is one that has foods and drinks made from liquids that you can see through. These foods are easy to eat and do not leave anything in the gastrointestinal tract.

It may be used when the gastrointestinal tract needs to be free of food or needs to rest, such as:

This way of eating does not give you enough calories. Be sure your doctor is watching you closely. Do not eat this way for more than a few days.

Foods You Can Have

You can also have sugar, salt, and pepper.

Foods You Should Not Have

Any foods not on the above list, such as:

Caution

Do not eat this way unless you are told to. People with certain health problems should not follow this diet or may need closer monitoring while they are on it. For example, the diet contains foods and drinks that are high in carbohydrates and simple sugars. This could raise the risk of low and high blood glucose levels in people with diabetes. The diet also contains thin liquids. This could pose problems in people who have difficulty swallowing.

RESOURCES:

American Gastroenterological Association
http://www.gastro.org

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
https://www.niddk.nih.gov

CANADIAN RESOURCES:

Dietitians of Canada
http://www.dietitians.ca

Public Health Agency of Canada
http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca

REFERENCES:

Colonoscopy. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/procedure/colonoscopy. Accessed February 3, 2021.

Oates, JR, Sharma, S. (2020). Clear Liquid Diet. In StatPearls. StatPearls Publishing.

Last reviewed December 2020 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Dianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN  Last Updated: 2/3/2021