RE: Vegan diet and Crohn's Disease
Posted Saturday, January 4, 2014 at 10:16 AM
I have been diagnosed with Crohn's disease & I am vegan. I am currently in remission. I am not taking and medication for the disease either. I do not eat gluten, processed food, and limit the amount of starch I eat.
My road was long, and not an easy one. As you know, the experience of Chrohn's can inspire drastic measures to feel any relief.
After my gastro dismissed the idea of addressing diet for my symptoms, I tore into the internet, Crohn's chat rooms and websites, and researched. The medication I was taking was literally eating the finish off the toilet seat . At that point in my life, I'd had 3 surgeries, I could not eat any raw fruits or vegetables and had considerable issues with most cooked vegetables. I had significant vitamin deficiencies because I was not digesting my food. Like your husband, I was eating lots of highly processed foods thinking they were easier on my guts.
I had read about a healing diet, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, and decided to try Atkins as a milder version. Within a week I noticed a significant improvement in symptoms. Because I was eating no "carbs" so to speak, I was not eating gluten and starch, and when I would slip and eat any gluten I would immediately go into flare, and if I ate a significant amount of starch I would also flare. I then proceeded to the Specific Carbohydrate Diet for about a year, which was a huge commitment. Cooked vegetables are slowly reintroduced and eventually raw vegetables as well. It was about this time that I went into a huge flare. My gastro wanted change my medication so I asked him if I could try none first, just to see what happened. It was like someone flipped a switch!!! I was immediately symptom free and have not had a major flare for nearly 2 years.
Then I met my husband, a vegan, and the rest is history. This is my 2nd 21 day challenge. ( I am a cheese-aholic, so this time I am swearing off cheese as well). I still notice symptoms when I ingest gluten, significant amounts of any starch, and iceberg lettuce. I can even have an occasional beer and remain symptom free.
If I was going to give your husband one piece of advice it would be, whatever you do, take it very slow, and listen to your body. Good luck.