Can You Have Beef Broth on a Clear Liquid Diet?

A clear liquid diet is often prescribed for a short period of time before or after certain medical procedures or treatments. This diet involves eliminating all solid foods and restricting intake to clear fluids only. The purpose is to give the digestive system a rest while still providing hydration.

While limiting, a clear liquid diet does provide key electrolytes and fluids. It’s typically recommended for just a few days at most to avoid nutritional deficits. So what can you eat and drink on a clear liquid diet? Is beef broth allowed?

What is a Clear Liquid Diet?

A clear liquid diet involves removing all solid foods from the diet temporarily The only items allowed are liquids you can see through The main components are

  • Water – plain, carbonated or flavored
  • Fruit juices without pulp like apple, white grape, or cranberry juice
  • Soft drinks like ginger ale, lemon-lime soda, or cola
  • Gelatin and popsicles without fruit chunks or pieces
  • Broths like chicken, beef, or vegetable broth
  • Tea and coffee without milk or creamers
  • Clear nutritional supplement drinks

The purpose of a clear liquid diet is to give the digestive system a rest. It is often prescribed before or after certain medical procedures or surgeries like:

  • Colonoscopy
  • Bariatric surgery
  • Digestive tract imaging tests

It may also be recommended for short-term management of digestive conditions like:

  • Crohn’s disease flares
  • Ulcerative colitis flares
  • Severe nausea and vomiting
  • Acute pancreatitis
  • Severe diarrhea

The limited nutrients of the diet make it unsuitable for more than a few days in most cases. It’s intended to be a short-term solution while the body heals.

Is Beef Broth Allowed on a Clear Liquid Diet?

Yes, beef broth is considered a clear liquid and is perfectly acceptable on a clear liquid diet. Broths made from chicken, vegetable, or beef can provide key fluids and electrolytes during this restricted diet period.

When choosing a beef broth, opt for a low-sodium variety. Look for broth with less than 500mg sodium per serving. Limiting salt intake will help prevent dehydration.

Opt for beef bone broth rather than beef bouillon or consomme. Bone broth offers more protein and beneficial amino acids like glycine and proline. These nutrients will help maintain energy levels.

Drink plain broth or use it for cooking approved clear liquids like:

  • Poached eggs
  • Rice
  • Clear soups with vegetables

This provides variety and makes it easier to meet daily hydration needs on the strict diet. Avoid broths with noodles, grains or chunks of vegetables or meat.

Sample Clear Liquid Diet with Beef Broth

Here is a sample menu featuring beef broth options:


  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 1 cup beef bone broth
  • herbal tea with lemon


  • 1 cup cranberry juice
  • 1 cup beef broth


  • 1 cup poached eggs made with 1 cup beef broth
  • herbal tea


  • 1 cup clear fruit-flavored gelatin
  • 12 ounces ginger ale


  • 1 cup clear vegetable soup with beef broth
  • 1 cup green tea


  • 1 cup veggie broth
  • 1 cup lemon-lime soda
  • herbal tea with honey

Drink additional water, clear juices, or broths as needed to stay hydrated between meals. Avoid milk, creamers, and pulp containing juices.

Tips for Following a Clear Liquid Diet

Here are some tips to help follow a clear liquid diet correctly:

  • Stick to the approved food and drink list provided by your healthcare provider.
  • Drink a variety of clear fluids including water, broths, juices, and clear sodas.
  • Choose lower sodium broths and avoid adding extra salt.
  • Include strained lemon, lime, or honey to enhance the flavor of plain broths.
  • Sip fluids slowly rather than gulping large amounts at once.
  • Set a timer to remember to drink every hour. Dehydration is common on this diet.
  • Chew gum or suck on hard candies when feeling hungry.
  • Monitor urine color to assess hydration status. Pale yellow to clear urine indicates adequate hydration.
  • Be sure to follow any specific preparation instructions for medical procedures requiring this diet.

Potential Benefits of a Clear Liquid Diet

While restrictive, a clear liquid diet offers several potential benefits including:

Gives the digestive system a rest – Eliminating solid foods reduces strain and irritation on inflamed or irritated digestive organs. This allows tissues to heal and recover.

Clears digestive contents – Before tests or procedures like a colonoscopy, the bowel must be cleared of all solid matter. A clear liquid diet helps achieve this cleansing.

Supports hydration – Even without eating, key fluids and electrolytes can be provided through broths and clear juices. This prevents dehydration.

Eases symptoms – In cases like pancreatitis or bowel obstructions, a liquid diet can help reduce pain levels and control nausea and vomiting until the condition improves.

Risks and How Long Can It Be Followed?

There are risks associated with remaining on a clear liquid diet for longer than a few days:

  • Nutritional deficits – A clear liquid diet lacks protein, fiber and many vitamins and minerals needed for good health. Without modification, it cannot safely meet all nutritional needs.

  • Blood sugar fluctuations – For those with diabetes, close monitoring is required to prevent spikes and crashes in blood glucose levels. Medication adjustments are often required.

  • Electrolyte imbalances – Dehydration and electrolyte disorders like low sodium, potassium and magnesium levels are common side effects. Supplementation may be required.

  • Weight loss – Significant weight loss can occur on this very low-calorie diet. People already at a low weight may be at increased risk of complications.

To avoid complications, a clear liquid diet should only be followed for a limited time according to medical advice. In most cases, it is not recommended for longer than 3 days. People with certain medical conditions like diabetes or kidney disorders may require even shorter use.

Transitioning Off a Clear Liquid Diet

Resuming regular foods after a liquid diet requires a slow, gradual reintroduction. Sudden shifts could result in digestive upset or diarrhea.

Here are some tips for transitioning off a clear liquid diet:

  • Slowly reintroduce foods starting with low fiber options like refined bread, eggs, yogurt, chicken, fish and cooked fruits and vegetables. Give your body time to adjust between adding new foods back.

  • Avoid high fat, spicy or heavily processed foods immediately after finishing the liquid diet. Stick with bland, mild choices the first few days.

  • Increase fiber slowly over several days. Add small servings of raw fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Too much fiber too fast could cause gas, bloating or diarrhea.

  • Stay hydrated and maintain electrolyte intake as you transition back to solid foods.

  • Closely monitor blood sugar if you have diabetes and adjust medications as needed under medical supervision.

  • Drink 16-24 ounces of fluid between each meal and with medicines.

  • Address any persistent gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting or diarrhea with your healthcare provider. You may need a longer transition.

With a gradual increase in foods over 3-5 days, most people can return to a regular diet without issues after following a short-term clear liquid diet. Consulting a registered dietitian nutritionist can help plan this transition.

When to Seek Medical Advice

Seek prompt medical attention if you experience:

  • Fever over 101°F
  • Blood in vomit or stool
  • Lightheadedness or fainting
  • Confusion
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Failure to urinate for more than 4-6 hours

These could indicate complications that require urgent evaluation, especially when following a very low calorie liquid diet.

The Bottom Line

A clear liquid diet involves removing all solid food and restricting intake to fluids like broth, juice, tea and gelatin. It is commonly prescribed before and after certain medical procedures or to help control gastrointestinal symptoms. Beef broth is considered a clear liquid that can provide key fluids and nutrients during this short-term diet. Most people can safely follow a clear liquid diet for a few days at most with medical supervision. Resuming a regular diet requires a gradual reintroduction of bland, low fiber foods over 3-5 days.



Does beef broth count as a clear liquid?

Clear liquids such as water, broth and gelatin are prescribed for a short time before or after some medical procedures or if you have digestive problems.

What kind of broth can you have on a clear liquid diet?

The best thing to do is to choose the most nutritious options you can eat while on the clear liquid diet. For example, if you want to drink broth, choose bone broth, which is rich in vitamins and nutrients, particularly protein. Another option is to select a premade nutritional drink such as Ensure Clear.

What kind of broth is ok before a colonoscopy?

Consider electrolyte-enhanced water (Smart Water) or sports drinks that are light in color (lemon-lime flavored). Clear broth or bone broth is also helpful in keeping nutrients in the body without solid food intake. These can be prepared with chicken broth powder, bouillon, or bought premade.

How to make beef broth taste better for clear liquid diet?

Spice up your bone broth with Ginger. It can help decrease hunger in some people and adds flavor and aroma to your broth. Other spices you can add are turmeric, garlic, and black pepper.

Is beef broth allowed on a clear liquid diet?

Hearty and nutritious, this traditional beef bone broth is a good clear liquid diet meal for lunch or dinner to stave off your hunger pangs. Many people swear by the health benefits of drinking bone broth, so why not make the most of your clear liquid diet time and give it a try yourself.

What types of broths are suitable for a clear liquid diet?

Hearty and nutritious, this traditional beef bone broth is a good clear liquid diet meal for lunch or dinner to stave off your hunger pangs. Many people swear by the health benefits of drinking bone broth, so why not make the most of your clear liquid diet time and give it a try yourself.

Are there any health benefits to drinking beef broth during a liquid diet?

Hearty and nutritious, this traditional beef bone broth is a good clear liquid diet meal for lunch or dinner to stave off your hunger pangs. Many people swear by the health benefits of drinking bone broth, so why not make the most of your clear liquid diet time and give it a try yourself.

Can you make a clear liquid broth from beef?

Yes it would be, so long as there’s nothing else inside it like veggies and the like. Technically in food definitions, it would be a clear liquid, though I’m a bit mixed on it as a freaking awesome beef broth has a lot of marrow infused into it, turning it cloudy.

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