Not all foods affect people in the same way when it comes to Crohn’s disease. Spicy food may be a problem for some, while others may have no issues with it. However, there some types of food you may want to avoid, especially during a symptom flare-up.
Nutritionist Tracie Dalessandro, based in Briarcliff Manor, NY, who also has Crohn’s said: “You always want to ensure you’re knowledgeable and informed about your own disease.”
Here’s a list of the eight types of food most likely to be a problem.
Once chicken, fish, and other healthy foods becomes fried, they should strictly be avoided. Fried food isn’t good for anyone, and its greasiness may be especially problematic for people with Crohn’s, says Dalessandro.
People with Crohn’s should avoid foods that contain lots of seeds, such as raspberries, strawberries, and tomatoes. Also to be avoided are rye bread and other baked foods that contain seeds. Dalessandro says:
“Those things don’t get digested fully and can cause more diarrhea,” she explains. “You want to stay away from things that are rough on the digestive system…it’s kind of like sandpaper on an open wound.”
Whole grains like popcorn are among foods to be skipped by a person with Crohn’s disease who’s having a flare-up. Popcorn is among the hardest of all those grains to digest. The same goes for corn on the cob. Delessandro advises:
“Anything that’s really rough to digest would possibly be detrimental and cause more symptoms and possibly slow the healing process, that’s been my experience with a lot of patients, and myself.”
Nuts contain healthy fats and high protein. However when eaten raw, it would affect most people with Crohn’s.
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“You can’t masticate them enough to get them to a consistency that’s really easy for the gut to digest,” explains Dalessandro.
Fruit with skin
For people with Crohn’s, apples would need to be peeled to remove the skin before consuming. If eaten with skin, it can cause major digestive distress. Also, vegetables with edible peels, like cucumbers should be peeled before consumption. Strip them off before you eat them. Cooked or canned fruits and vegetables are often a better choice than raw.
It’s essential for people with Crohn’s disease to get enough protein; at least 25% of your daily calorie consumption should contain protein. However, eating fatty and cured meats, like bacon, is not the best way to add protein to your diet.
These foods contain little nutritional benefit, while their high fat content can worsen diarrhea for some people. Go for lean high-quality proteins, like fish, soy, and smooth nut butters.
Crohn’s disease can damage the digestive tract, so it can also cause lactose intolerance – an inability to digest the sugar found in milk and other dairy products.
If dairy causes bloating, gas, or worsens other symptoms, you may want to try soy or almond milk instead of cow’s milk. Go for harder, aged cheeses like Parmesan, Romano, or cheddar instead of soft cheeses like mozzarella or ricotta.
Coffee, chocolate, carbonated beverages and alcohol
Anything with caffeine and chocolate is not ideal for people with Crohn’s. People with IBD can also have trouble with caffeinated sodas
Alcohol should completely be avoided or consumed with caution, as it can be a problem for some people with inflammatory bowel disease.
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