Bland Diet – What to Eat, What to Avoid and Benefits

A bland diet refers to a specific diet that contains soft foods with less dietary fiber and cooked food. This diet will not have spicy, raw, fatty, and fried foods. There will be no use of strong cheeses and whole-grain with rich fiber.

During a bland diet, the person has to avoid consuming ibuprofen and aspirin medications. It is a soothing diet for the digestive tract. It helps to lessen the soreness of the membranes. As this diet have flavor absence, it is described as bland.

Other names of a bland diet

The bland diet also called a BRAT diet. BRAT is an abbreviation for a banana, rice, applesauce, and toast. Add these foods while following a bland diet and other substitutes.

1. Fruits and Veggies

Servings Per Day: 2-3

Foods to Eat

  • Sweet potato
  • Waxed beans
  • Pumpkins
  • Carrots
  • Beetroot
  • White potato
  • Winter and summer squash
  • Strained vegetable
  • Juice
  • Avocado
  • Banana
  • Fruit juice (without pulp)
  • Orange and grapefruit
  • Without the membrane
  • Seeds
  • Apple (without the peel)

Foods to Avoid

  • Fried veggies
  • Potato wafers
  • Spicy veg preparations
  • Fried potato
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Tomato
  • Berries
  • Figs

2. Proteins & Nuts

Servings Per Day: 2-3

Foods To Eat

  • Soy
  • Tofu
  • Soy yogurt
  • Soy milk
  • Cod
  • Trout
  • Herring
  • Lean cuts of chicken
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Groundnuts
  • Peanut butter
  • Well-cooked
  • Soft meat.

Foods to Avoid

    • Greasy
    • Spicy
    • Highly seasoned meat
    • Fried chicken
    • Fish (Fried)
    • Fried poultry
    • Raw eggs


    • Flax seeds


  • Dry beans
  • Sausages
  • Ham
  • Nuts (with outer cover)
  • Chunky peanut butter
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sunflower seeds

3. Carbs

Servings Per Day: 6-10 servings

Foods To Eat

  • White bread
  • Flour pasta
  • Rice noodles
  • Rice wraps
  • White rice
  • Flour spaghetti
  • Flatbreads
  • Flour biscuits
  • Cornbread

Foods to Avoid

  1. Popcorn
  2. Brown rice
  3. Multigrain flour
  4. Whole wheat bread
  5. Multigrain bread
  6. Multigrain biscuits
  7. Whole wheat cookies
  8. Cookies with dry fruits
  9. Highly seasoned biscuits

4. Fats & Oils

Servings Per Day: In moderation

Foods To Eat

  • Butter
  • Olive oil
  • White sauce
  • Cream sauce
  • Mayonnaise
  • Margarine
  • Cream cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Avocado dressing
  • Mustard dressing.

Foods to Avoid

  • Coconut oil
  • Animal fat
  • Highly seasoned
  • High-calorie dressings

5. Dairy Foods

Servings Per Day: 2-3 servings

Foods To Eat

  • Low-fat yogurt
  • Mild cheeses
  • Buttermilk
  • Low-fat milk
  • Cottage cheese
  • Condensed milk
  • Pasteurized eggnog
  • Low-fat milk powder
  • Milk ricotta cheese(low-fat)

Foods to Avoid

  • Full-fat milk
  • Strong cheeses
  • Full-fat yogurt

6. Herbs & Spices

Servings Per Day: In moderation

Foods To Eat

  • Salt
  • Olives
  • Mild spices.

Foods to Avoid

  • Black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Chili
  • Chili sauce
  • Garam masala
  • Allspice
  • Clove
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Barbecue sauce
  • Sweet chili sauce
  • Strong sauces(lemon-based)
  • Mustard seeds
  • Pickles

7. Desserts & Sweets

Servings Per Day: In moderation

Foods To Eat

  • Honey
  • Syrup
  • Molasses
  • Chocolate
  • Ice cream
  • Seedless jam
  • Marshmallow
  • White flour cakes
  • Custard
  • Pudding
  • Jelly
  • Sherbet
  • Hard candies
  • Gelatin dessert

Foods to Avoid

  • Donuts
  • Marmalades
  • Fried ice cream
  • Chocolate containing nuts
  • Ice cream containing nuts
  • Desserts containing fruits
  • Sweets containing full-fat milk

8. Beverages

Foods To Eat

  • Water
  • Buttermilk
  • Strained fruit
  • Coconut water
  • Vegetable juices

Foods to Avoid

  • Tea
  • Coffee
  • Energy drinks
  • Lime juice
  • Alcohol
  • Fresh fruit juice (with pulp)

Bland Diet – Food List

Your doctor may recommend a bland diet if you are suffering from digestive disorders such as peptic ulcer, chronic gastritis, persistent diarrhea, and reflux disease. The bland diet is also suggested for people who recently undergone digestive tract surgery.

The bland diet is created to restrict the foods that raise intestinal activity and inflame the gastrointestinal tissues. During this diet, you will eat soft and easy to digest foods.

Soft Protein

Consume 2-3 portion poultry, shellfish, lean meat, fish every day.

You can also include eggs, dried beans, tofu. There is a substitute for meat with nut butter. Make sure to avoid added fat, steamed meat, backed food, fried fish, or poultry. Rather than keep these foods soft as much as possible. Avoid all processed, cured, smoked, and high spiced products.

Low-Fat Dairy

Include low-fat dairy in 2-3 servings every day while on a bland diet. Consuming plant milk, cow milk, mild cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, and ice cream. Make sure to choose only no fat or low-fat products to manage low fat.

Avoid having cream, aged or strong cheese including blue cheese, or dairy products comprise of berries, seeds, and strong spices.

Refined Grains

Include 6-11 servings of grain products while you are on a bland diet. Make sure to avoid whole grains such as brown rice, wheat bread, whole grain pasta. While cooking rice, don’t include extra butter. Prefer to add plain white crackers without added seeds. Also, consume refined cereals, including corn flakes.

Canned Fruits

During the bland diet, you are allowed to consume 2-4 servings of fruit every day. Although you should eat cooked or consume fruit juice or fruit in place of fresh fruit. Consume all types of berries, dried fruit, and figs.

Cooked Veggies

While following a bland diet, you will require to consume only cooked vegetables. Eating raw lettuce is optional for some people. Make a plan to eat 3-5 serving every day. Avoid eating vegetables that may lead to intestinal gas such as brussels sprouts, cabbage, turnips, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, and those foods that caused digestive problems earlier. You can also prefer to have vegetable juices but skip the brands comprises of strong spices.

Condiments in Moderation

Using salad with mild dressings with ketchup, vinegar, mustard, olive oil, and mustard while on a bland diet. Also, you need to avoid foods containing strong food seasoning ingredients such as chili peppers, horseradish, and garlic. Pepper and salt or allowed as a mild herb for flavoring foods.

Non-caffeinated Beverages


While following a bland diet, you can consume herbal tea but avoid caffeine consumption, such as coffee, black tea, and soda. All types of alcohol are not allowed.

Bland Diet do Menus

Menu 1

Breakfast (8 am)
  • Consume 2-slices of white bread with 1-banana and peanut butter.
Lunch (noon)
  • Eat Baked trout, white rice, canned pear sauce, and carrots.
Post Lunch Snack (4 pm)
  • Consume half a cup of low-fat yogurt
Dinner (7:30 pm)
  • Eat tofu balls and Flour spaghetti with butter. Also, add some herbs sprinkle.

Menu 2

Breakfast (8 am)
  • Eat 1-toast with margarine,1-scrambled egg and one cup filtered carrot juice
Lunch (12 pm)
  • Consume asparagus, baked mushroom, and Roasted chicken breast.
Post Lunch Snack (4 pm)
  • 1-banana
Dinner (7:30 pm)
  • Boiled codfish, Sweet potato salad containing low-calorie dressing.

Menu 3

Breakfast (8 am)
  • 2-pancakes made with low-fat milk and white flour. Have with maple syrup.
Lunch (12 pm)
  • Consume Avocado soup and Blended squash
Post Lunch Snack (4 pm)
  • Buttermilk with one cup filtered fruit juice
Dinner (7:30 pm)
  • Tuna with Macaroni and herbs

You don’t require to live with tasteless food while on a bland diet. It is the best thing if you cook your meal. You will learn to use and consume the right quantity of foods. Here are some tasty recipes to make your bland diet delicious.

Easy Recipe for Bland Diet

Tofu Balls and Spaghetti

  • Spaghetti – 3 oz
  • Water – A large pot
  • mashed tofu – 3 oz
  • flour – 1-teaspoon
  • butter- 1-teaspoon
  • Egg-1
  • Milk -1-teaspoon
  • Mixed herbs half teaspoon
  • Cooking spray
  • Salt 3-4 teaspoon
  • Cheddar cheese-2 tbsp
How To Cook
  • Pre-heat the oven at 180°C.
  • Add flour, mixed herbs, and salt with the crushed tofu.
  • Mold the dough into tiny balls.
  • Add cooking spray on a baking
  • Keep the tofu balls over the tray and sprinkle the cooking spray.
  • Let them bake for ten to fifteen minutes at 140°C.
  • Boil the water in a large pot and add
  • Mix one teaspoon of salt and olive oil in it.
  • Mix the spaghetti and cook it for 10 minutes.
  • Strain the spaghetti and give it to a mixing bowl.
  • Make the sauce by adding the egg, butter, milk, and mixed herbs.
  • Fry it on high flame for one minute. Continue stirring.
  • Add the sauce on the spaghetti and combine well.
  • Add the tofu balls.
  • Garnish it with cheddar cheese.

Your diet plays an important role in digestion problems and intestinal irritation. There is some exercise also require to perform while on a bland diet. You can perform yoga to reduce the discomfort and pain to relieve stomach problems.

Here are some light yoga poses to help in a bland diet.

Yoga for Healing Stomach Ailments


  • Rest using your back and get your knees near your chest.
  • Support your knees using your hands.
  • Move from side to side. Hold the pose for two minutes and after that, release your hands.
  • Do asana this multiple time.


  • Sit on the ground by keeping your legs straight ahead.
  • Gently take down your upper body to connect your toes.
  • Take out hands from your toes and keep them on the ground on the side of your feet.
  • Wait in this pose for 1-2 minutes.
  • Dot Pashchimottanasana three times.


  • Sit on the ground and overlay your legs. Spot your hands over your knees with the end goal that your palms face toward the sky.
  • Maintain your spine straight and close your eyes.
  • Breath-in deeply and breath out forcibly so, your stomach moves inside as you breathe out.
  • Relax, and keeping in mind that you breathe out, consider every one of your afflictions being breathed out.
  • Continue doing for 5 minutes.
  • Slowly keep doing for 15-minutes.


  • Lie down over your back and relax.
  • Breathe in. Extend your legs and get them until your temple contacts your knee.
  • Spot your arms around your legs and clasp your fingers.
  • Keep this pose for 30 seconds.
  • Breathe out slowly and return to your previous position.
  • Do this 3-4 times.


  • Sit on the ground. Overlap your legs and fold them under your thighs.
  • Shut your eyes and grasp your spine straight.
  • Place your palms toward your knees.
  • Breathe-in and breathe-out slowly.
  • Do it multiple times

Regularly following a bland diet plan helps to cure stomach problems and prevent discomfort. Follow this diet as your physician suggestion.

Later, when you recover from ailments, try to consume fried and spice food in a little quantity.

When Is a Bland Diet Helpful?

The bland diet helps treat stomach ailments and specific conditions. Normal people should not try this diet. Here are the conditions to follow a bland diet.

Food poisoning from bacteria


When you caught up with food poisoning due to bacteria, follow the bland diet to slowly get back to your normal stomach condition and eating habit.


The condition of gastroenteritis is infectious diarrhea. A bland diet is the best suitable diet to soothe the condition.

Traveler’s diarrhea

People suffering from traveler’s diarrhea can also follow a bland diet. It helps to comfort the stomach and provide essential nutrition to reduce food craving.

Upset stomach

Pregnancy may cause vomiting and nausea, which also known as morning sickness or hyperemesis gravidarum. Pregnancy woman can try eating a small and frequent meal of bland diet to relieve the condition.

Gastrointestinal bowel syndrome

During this condition, the bland diet is helpful to treat acute cases such as irritable bowel disease, Crohn’s, inflammatory bowel problem, diverticulitis, and ulcerative colitis.

Is bland diet safe?

The bland diet is only advised for a short-term period and as per the condition. After recovery and improvements, the person can continue with a regular diet. Adding fiber provides various health benefits. Therefore, continuing a bland diet for a long time may affect health due to a lack of nutrition.

Consuming high fiber foods helps to reduce LDL cholesterol and normalize blood sugar levels. It also assists in weight management.

Studies Views

There is no more scientific research about the effectiveness of the balanced diet. The bland diet prevents you from eating foods that can cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea and gas. It also suggests consuming soft and mild foods with light flavor because strong aroma may cause nausea.

If you have more symptoms, then it will induce more acid reflux in an increased way.

Does a bland diet have risks?

A bland diet may have a risk of constipation as the fiber content helps to regulate bowel movements. Having long term bland diet causes to affect overall health because fiber encourages healthy bacteria in the gut.

Benefits of a bland diet

Following a bland diet provide you various benefits.

Ulcerative Colitis

Bland diets are recommended for the people with inflammatory or ulcerative conditions of the stomach, intestine, and esophagus conditions.

The bland diet is created to reduce the physical discomfort and stress to get sufficient nutrition.

When you plan bland diet meals, you should talk with your doctor to find out exact nutritional values. Most of the time, the ulcerative condition causes iron deficiency and lose blood. Therefore, you will require nutritional supplements. While following a bland diet, you should remember a certain lifestyle may affect its food tolerance.

Additionally, you need to skip the gastric irritant foods such as carbonated drinks, caffeine, chili powder, specific drugs, alcohol, and pepper.

A bland diet is created to limit the symptoms while fulfilling the nutritional requirements. Vegetable consumption is an important part of a bland diet as they provide folate, potassium, vitamin A, A, and minerals.

Acid Reflux

A bland diet for acid reflux includes lots of foods with enough fiber which aid digestion with plenty of liquid and freshwater. Avoid foods such as chocolates, condiments, fatty foods, fried meat that helps to manage the condition. Additionally, you can add soft foods to soothe the digestive tract.

Make sure to avoid starchy foods that make digestion process difficult.


Eating bland diet helps to prevent heartburn and reduce the effects of gastric acidity.


A bland diet is also beneficial for breastfeeding mothers. Women with a sensitive stomach should consume a bland diet. This diet provides all nutrition during initial stages.

In some cases, some babies develop medical problems such as colic which is a sensitive condition of the baby’s stomach. Mother’s all food consumption will effect on baby health, so it is important to follow a bland diet to relieve baby health.

After getting diagnosed with baby digestive conditions, a breastfeeding mother should avoid foods such as citrus, peanuts, eggs, soy, peanuts, and dairy products.

It is recommended to finds the cause and symptom of baby health before starting with a bland diet.

When a baby has stomach upset, there will be symptoms of sleeplessness, nausea, diarrhea, crying all the time. These symptoms are a sign of food reactions after mother consume than the child from breast milk.

Stomach Surgery

A bland diet is beneficial for people who had intestinal or stomach surgery. This diet helps to digest food easily.

Weight Loss

Another benefit of a bland diet is weight loss. Having controlled eating support weight loss. However, remember that the bland diet is not for long term weight loss goal because it doesn’t have essential nutrition’s.

Bland Diet for Children

Children can also follow a bland diet that contains rice, bananas, toast, and applesauce. This diet is comprised of soft and mild textured foods with low fiber and mild seasoning. This diet is especially recommended for children with a digestive problem. Let your child consume a small and frequent meal the whole day. Make sure to stop your child from eating before two hours of bedtime.

Remember to follow specific instructions given by your physician about beverages and foods.

Here are some general guidelines for children bland diet.

  • Give your child oral rehydration, water, milk, formula, juices, clear liquids, broth.
  • Let your child diet include oatmeal, cereal, pasta, applesauce, pasta, mashed potatoes, soups, rice, noodles, crackers, dry toast, bread, and pretzels.
  • Avoid using raw fruits, beans, vegetables, and spices.

Note: Some children are sensitive to the lactose present in the milk. Their symptoms may become worse. If this condition occurs, then use oral rehydration in place of milk.

Home care

Bland diet for children also requires to follow for a short time as it does not provide all the nutrition.

Following the bland diet for more time than recommended causes malnutrition to the child’s body. It does not provide enough nutrition to the child body for growth.

Once your child completes the given time of diet, he/she should start eating regular food including, vegetables, fruits. Make sure to ask your doctor if you see any symptoms.

Bland diet and cancer

Generally, a bland diet is beneficial for individuals with digestive ailments. It includes those with diarrhea, nausea, appetite loss, or taste change. If left these conditions untreated, these will result in huge weight loss and malnutrition.

A cancer patient can follow a bland diet until the recommended time by their doctor. It will help to manage a healthy weight.

Common complaints and how to solve them?

Getting a lack of flavors in different foods can be a problem for some people with a bland diet. Planning and listing your meal in advance helps to prevent repeated foods.

You can use marinades to get the natural flavors in poultry. Do the marinate of poultry in fruit juices such as pineapple or orange juice.

Also, include garlic or onions and sea salt to bring the natural flavors in the meat.

Foods of bland diet may cause binding, which results in constipation. It is recommended to drink enough water throughout the whole day to ease constipation.

Other tips

  • If you are getting nausea or appetite problem, then try to consume smaller meals frequently three times.
  • Avoid drinking liquid while having a meal this will prevent liquid filling in place of nutrition.
  • Chew the food well to assist in smooth digestion.

Follow the bland diet when you the health conditions mentioned above. Now you have got the idea to eat the right foods and avoid unsuitable foods. When you have multiple health conditions like diabetes and digestive health problem, then take extra cautious about your eating habits. Always take the opinion of your physician before supplementing or removing any foods from your diet. Your consultant will provide you the right advice to manage the health in challenging conditions. It will also save you from growing complications.

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