Managing crohn's by diet alone

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Has anyone tried managing their disease by diet alone? I can't tolerate steroids, I have been on Humira on and off for 24 months, but due to the constant sinus infections, I'm off it more than I'm on it.

I've thought about coming off altogether and trying a simple/basic diet instead.

Anyone got any thoughts on this? / Experience?

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  • Posted

    Hi Laura,

    My name is Safya & I'm 23 years old. I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease around 7 months ago. As I am only 23 I didn't want to rely so much on medication as I didn't want my condition to take over my life so I decided to change my lifestyle & so my journey began.

    On day to day basis a lot of my diet included, spices, curries, carbs sweets, chocolate, fizzy drinks etc. I decided I needed to find out what it was that was causing me my issues.I started off by recording what I was eating, the reaction the food was giving me if any, how I was feeling afterwards & began to narrow it down. So if one day I had a curry and I had a symptom I was looking at the ingredients in the curry that might have caused the symptom & then the next time I make this I will take out one ingredient etc etc etc. (hopefully this makes sense)

    After doing this I came to the conclusion that spices, onions, garlic, nuts & red meat were the main causes to what makes me react.

    Removing these foods from my diet and now leading a healthier lifestyle which consists of, fruits, veg, salads, walks, exercise has lead me to feel so much better. I am taking medication I'm on 800mg of Mesalazine (Octasa) 6 Tablets a day & 250mg of Octasa Suppository but by changing my lifestyle this has helped me control my symptoms and not increase the severity of my condition.

    When i went to see my consultant he told me on a scale of 1-10 I am now at the very bottom.

    I hope this helps you and you can also benefit froom this like I did. Please do let me know if you have any questions and if this helps you.



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  • Posted


    Please be very careful of following other peoples diets.  We are all different and therefore, react differently to foods.  Some, including myself, have to steer away from fruits and veg.  In fact when I do eat them I have to peel everything and de seed them - i.e. tomatoes, peppers, and cucumber. I can eat finely chopped garlic and curries.  My consultant told me in his opinion foods do not cause a flare.  In fact with me I firmly believe stress causes them.  Who knows.  All I can say is to eat whatever feels right with you

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  • Posted

    Hi Laura

    I know what your're going through although I drew the line at Humira myself because of all the possible side effects.

    I've had a lot of flare-ups lately due to the PIP farce. It has been particularly bad over this last year but in October I finally won my award. It has been very stressful and I haven't been sticking to my own special diet. Needless to say I ended up in hospital a couple of times.

    Now that's behind me I can concentrate on my diet better. About 2 years ago I had a really bad flare, hospital borderline, and decided to try whole natural foods which meant cutting out grains, fat and sugar, especially in the form of chocolates, etc! (Comfort eating foods).

    Because I was bleeding and everything, In the morning I had a banana and spinach smoothie - you can add anything you like so long as you avoid anything with pips. For lunch potato and carrot soup made with veg or chicken stock, and over the following week or so I added more vegs one at a time: cauliflour, broccoli, spinach and onion, pretty much in that order. I know a lot of people say that if they ate that they would end up in hospital. Well, I was almost there anyway so I thought what they hey, nothing to  lose!

    But it worked, my bowels movements slowly firmed up and the bleeding stopped, I started feeling a lot better. I progressed from that to having steamed vegs with chicken or salmon, then eventually onto stews in the slow cooker for my meal at night. I can even eat some chocolate, oven chips, etc but it's a case of not overdoing it.

    I am on steroids and have been for about 15 years now, mostly low doses unless I am flaring badly then I have to put them up. If it hadn't been for the last year's stress I reckon I could have got off them by now with this diet. I am determined to get better but I'm having to start again after making a mess of things at Xmas!

    So in short, whole foods seems to be the answer for me. Give it some thought and see how you go.

    Whatever you decide I wish you all the best, I know how hard this is.

    Pat x

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    • Posted

      Hi pat, Thank you for taking time to reply, I have taken note of what you've said, and I'll give the whole foods a go. No more processed / quick  / easy foods.

      I struggle with Cauliflower and broccoli usually, but I suppose if they are well cooked I'll be OK.

      I might try a basic chicken casserole in the slow cooker with soft veggies etc.

      No more Humira, I'm so so poorly after every injection

      Best of luck for the future smile



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    • Posted

      Hi Laura

      I forgot to say I blended the soups first until my system adjusted - about 2-3 days, but I was pretty bad at the time. My consultant once told me it's a case of retraining the bowel, which is a good way of putting it.

      Remember to add just one thing at a time so you can keep an eye on it. I remember adding cabbage which didn't agree with me, I believe it has something in it that can irritate the bowel if you have IBD - can't remember where I saw that now. You will lose weight but it does balance out eventually.

      Good luck,


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