Potential Dietary Advice For Preventing Crohn's Disease Flare-Ups

Crohn's disease seems to be a common inflammatory bowel disease. It may result in significant inflammation in the digestive tract. Many patients say that flare-ups of their symptoms can be quite painful. Common symptoms of this condition appear to include diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fatigue. A poor diet may worsen symptom severity. It also seems as if certain foods trigger intense flare-ups.

Patients may experience relief with corticosteroids for Crohn's disease. This may be part of a regimen of anti-inflammatory medications for Crohn's disease. Nutritional deficiencies may result in patients needing supplements, which can include vitamin B12 shots for Crohn's disease. Severe cases can require surgery for Crohn's disease. Natural remedies for Crohn's disease may also be possible. These remedies seem to start with following the right Crohn's disease diet.

Avoid Whole Wheat

Individuals with Crohn's disease may need to avoid whole wheat. Although most whole wheat products appear to be healthy due to their high fiber content, this does not seem helpful for Crohn's disease patients. Fiber does help regulate digestion. However, it can be difficult for the body to digest. This effect seems to be magnified in individuals with Crohn's disease. They may experience symptoms such as pain in the abdomen and diarrhea as a result.

Patients with this condition may also deal with gluten intolerance. This can make the potential flare-up of Crohn's disease even more. Thus, they may need to avoid whole wheat products, including whole wheat bread and pasta. This also seems to include rye-based products and barley. Instead, patients may want oatmeal, potatoes, gluten-free bread, white rice, and white bread.

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Try Eating Low-Fiber Fruits And Vegetables

Usually, fruits and vegetables are considered part of a healthy diet. However, they may not be as healthy as many individuals think. Many fruits and vegetables seem to contain significant amounts of fiber. This should, like whole wheat, help an individual's digestion. They should also keep them feeling full for longer. However, individuals with Crohn's disease appear to struggle with eating many fruits and vegetables due to their fiber content. They may need to avoid high fiber fruits and vegetables, such as cherries, broccoli, plums, unpeeled apples, and cabbage.

Thus, some Crohn's disease patients may want to try eating low-fiber fruits and vegetables. This means considering bananas, squash, peeled cucumber, pumpkin, and bell peppers. They may also be able to eat some applesauce, as this may reduce the digestion needed for apples. Cooking vegetables and fruit may help reduce the insoluble fiber that they contain. This appears to make digesting them easier. 

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Eat Smaller Meals More Frequently

It seems as if the majority of individuals only eat three large meals a day. This may not be the right course of action for individuals with Crohn's disease. Some research appears to indicate that the size of the meal is just as influential on flare-ups as the nutritional content of the food. In other words, patients may experience Crohn's disease flare-ups more often if they eat three large meals a day. Thus, Crohn's disease patients may wish to consider eating smaller meals more frequently. It appears that the most common example of this is three small meals and two snacks. Patients may eat a small breakfast, then a snack mid-morning, followed by lunch. They may then have an afternoon snack before their dinner.

Patients may want to use a measuring cup for their food. However, this does not appear to be necessary. It seems that patients can use their fist to judge the size of their meals. Patients may want to keep a food diary when they start this. It may help them to record what food they eat and when. The food diary should also include what symptoms they experience and when. This should help patients and their doctors pinpoint trigger foods. They may be able to adjust the diet better as a result.

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Limit Dairy Consumption

Lactose intolerance appears to be common among Crohn's disease patients. This seems to mean that they cannot break down lactose properly. Thus, they may not be able to digest some dairy products. Eating foods that are not fully digestible may trigger Crohn's disease flare-ups. It may even trigger the development of the disease. Many dairy products also appear to be high in fat. High-fat foods also seem to be hard for Crohn's disease patients to digest properly. 

Thus, individuals with Crohn's disease may want to limit their dairy consumption. This likely includes milk, butter, cream, cheese, and margarine. Skim milk and low-fat cheese may be appropriate substitutes. There also seems to be low-fat versions of most dairy products. However, suppose individuals are also lactose intolerant. In that case, they may need alternatives such as soy cheese, almond milk, coconut milk, soy milk, and rice milk.

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Eat Lean Meat

Protein appears to be a vital part of most diets. It should help increase an individual's energy and regulate their muscle growth. The most common source of protein for individuals is likely meat. However, individuals with Crohn's disease may need to pay attention to the meat that they consume. It seems as if many types of meat, including red meat, sausages, and dark poultry meat are high in fat. The fat content may lead to flare-ups of their symptoms as it can make these meats harder to digest.

Thus, Crohn's disease patients may want to eat lean meat. Lean meat seems to include white meat from turkey and chicken, as well as fish and shellfish. Some individuals may be able to tolerate small amounts of pork tenderloin.

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Katherine MacAulay