Crohn’s disease is a condition many suffer from and do their best to avoid a flare-up, which often means changes to their diet. Similar to other colorectal conditions, your favorite foods might have to change, and you begin to discover foods to avoid when you have Crohn’s disease in the hopes of not disrupting their condition.
Crohn’s disease is a bowel disease causing inflammation in your digestive tract. The flare-up causes weight loss, severe diarrhea, fatigue, and abdominal pain. Due to the symptoms of Crohn’s disease, it is crucial for those with the condition to adjust their diets and be aware of foods affecting Crohn’s disease so it won’t cause them more pain in the long run.
5 Foods to Avoid When You Have Crohn’s Disease
Crohn’s disease is quite possibly one of the most painful disorders to endure. The condition inflames the bowels, producing stomach pains, gas, and diarrhea. Patients often have difficulty absorbing all the nutrients from their food, leaving them hungry and unable to eat several foods without terrible cramping. Perhaps the worst part of Crohn’s disease is that there’s no definitive cure, and every Crohn’s patient is different with the foods they can and cannot tolerate.
However, some foods are more likely than others to cause flare ups. If you have Crohn’s, you may want to try an elimination diet and make a note of each food that causes you discomfort.
Your doctor will most likely recommend vitamins and supplements to help you combat malnutrition and make up for what your body can’t absorb from food. Calcium, multivitamins with minerals, B12, and D are all excellent choices for Crohn’s disease diets.
Foods high in fiber
Avoid foods high in fiber, such as broccoli, cauliflower, corn and the skins of any fruit or veggies like apples and cucumbers. Instead, try cooked vegetables and fruits. Applesauce and green juices can help you get the nutrients you need without the fibrous content that can linger in your colon and irritate your Crohn’s. Do you still want the occasional salad? Try butter lettuce. It’s more easily digestible.
Fried foods, butter, oils, and red meat are probably crossed off on your Crohn’s disease diet. Supplement your diet with low-fat foods and dairy alternatives.
- Fish, lean ground beef, ground turkey
- Creamy peanut butter and other nut butter
- Almond milk, low-fat yogurt, and cheese substitutes
One of the best fatty things you can eat? Avocados. They’re full of vitamins and healthy fats and have soluble fiber, which is more friendly on your digestive tract.
Gas or diarrhea producing foods and drinks
Sodas or other carbonated beverages increase gas, as do foods like beans (and most other legumes), cabbage and onions. Different things cause diarrhea like coffee, tea, and chocolate because they contain caffeine. Alcohol will likely have the same outcome, so avoid beers, liquors, and wine.
It’s best to stick to plain water, though you could try flavoring it with essential oils or fruits like lemon, lime, cucumber or other fruit.
Grains give us carbs and energy, and while the healthier option is usually whole grains, but high fiber foods aren’t an excellent choice for Crohn’s disease diets. Instead, supplement with white bread, white rice, and pasta. These choices have “low-residue” meaning there’s less “scrap” to irritate the bowels.
Many people also do well with oatmeal, which soaks up water and passes through your colon slowly, minimizing diarrhea. These carb solutions can boost your calorie intake when you’re in need of a calming food to fill you up. But, make sure you’re still getting in your proteins and cooked veggies for nutritional value.
Nuts and seeds
If you are a fan of nuts, Crohn’s disease will come between this love, as they are another food to avoid this condition. The high protein in nuts causes flare-ups in those with the disease and are often hard to digest.
Foods with seeds, like strawberries, are also on the list to swap out in your diet. Even the tiniest seeds disrupt in your digestive tract.
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