Crohn’s flares are never fun. Steering clear of certain foods may make them a little easier on your system and reduce the length of time the flair up lasts. Things such as bulky grains, high-fiber foods, hot spices, greasy or fried foods, alcohol, and milk products may increase diarrhea and cramping during a flare. The key is to reduce inflammation. Following these simple diet changes may just help with the pain and discomfort associated with Crohn’s disease.
An efficient way to battle the abdominal discomfort of flare-ups, is to eat smaller meals more frequently. Think five small meals (fist-sized portions) every three to four hours instead of the traditional three large meals a day. Using smaller dishes and bowls may help you adjust to eating less. This is also a very simple and easy dietary change that will benefit the Crohn’s sufferer.
This diet may be helpful for Crohn’s patients who develop a stricture, or narrowing, in their small intestine. Easy-to-digest foods that slow down your bowel movements include everyday foods like cooked vegetables, fruits, white breads, and meats. The goal is to eat less than 10 to 15 grams of fiber each day.
Fluids are also important for optimal nutrition. Dehydration from chronic diarrhea can have serious effects on kidney function and create a feeling of weakness. Aim to drink one-half ounce for every pound of body weight each day. So if you weigh 140 pounds, try to drink at least 70 ounces a day.
If you’re not getting enough calories, vitamins, and minerals, your doctor may suggest a supplement based on the extent and location of your disease. Supplements can range from vitamins, such as B-12 and D, to high-calorie liquids. It’s best to take vitamin supplements only on your doctor’s advice.
There’s no magic eating plan that works for everyone with Crohn’s. Your diet should be tailored just for you. While eating patterns will likely change as your disease changes, consuming a healthy, well-balanced diet can go a long way in making the most of living with your disease.
Keep it simple. Concentrate on small, healthy meals, low in fiber. Fiber should be kept under 15 grams per day but always consult with your physician on these matters. Every person is an individual and so is their disease process.
I hope this article helps a few people that suffer from Crohn’s Disease.