Crohn’s disease is difficult to manage, even during times of remission. A flare-up can happen without warning and last for days. Many foods have the potential to cause a flare-up to occur or become worse, making meal choices more difficult. And the pain and diarrhea that accompany Crohn’s can greatly diminish your quality of life. Fortunately, living with Crohn’s disease doesn’t have to mean you can’t be happy and productive. With proper professional treatment combined with self care, you can help keep this disease in remission more often and minimize the symptoms during flare-ups.
Even if you are taking medication for Crohn’s disease, you can still experience symptoms, which in turn can cause a great deal of stress. Stress can in turn cause your symptoms to worsen, creating a vicious cycle. One of the best ways to cope with Crohn’s disease is to learn how to handle stress, both in and out of remission. It is normal and understandable to feel angry, frustrated or even depressed about having Crohn’s, but these emotions will only make you feel worse both physically and emotionally.
To help reduce your stress levels, learn all you can about Crohn’s disease. The more you know, the more you will understand what can happen and how to handle it. Learn the warning signs for flare-ups and know when you need emergency medical attention. Research all the possible treatments and discuss them with your doctor to decide what is best for you.
Talk with your family and friends about your condition so they have an idea of what you are going through. Loved ones are a great source of support when you need to talk. It will also help them understand why you may have to change plans or give up certain activities. Try a relaxing activity and use meditation or yoga to also help reduce stress.
Another way to make it easier to live with Crohn’s disease is to change your diet. Although diet does not cause Crohn’s disease, it can affect whether or not you have a flare-up and make your symptoms worse. There are many known trigger foods for Crohn’s disease, including foods high in fat, fried foods, alcohol, caffeine, spicy foods, and processed foods that are low in fiber. Although you do not want to eat a high-fiber diet during episodes of diarrhea, while you are in remission it is important to get adequate fiber. Eating natural, whole foods instead of processed foods high in fat will help your body stay healthy and reduce flare-ups.
If you want to do more for your Crohn’s disease than just changing what you eat, start using the food combining principles for eating. Eating the right foods in the right combinations keeps your stomach from having to produce conflicting enzymes and acids that can cause bloating, heartburn and abdominal pain. Less stress on your digestive system means it is less likely your Crohn’s disease symptoms will flare up. Food combining is simple, safe for the entire family, and can also help with other conditions such as IBS and chronic diarrhea. Start food combining today for better digestive health.