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How to Treat a Crohn’s Flare

How to Treat a Crohn’s Flare?noresize

If you have Crohn’s Disease, you’ve probably spent some time searching the internet to figure out how to manage your condition. The good news is that the internet has a ton of information. The bad news is that the information you read about Crohn’s management can often be contradicting and confusing. So how are you supposed to find relief from your Crohn’s symptoms? Thankfully, we’ve done the hard work for you. We put together a how-to guide to help you best manage your condition.

Unfortunately, Crohn’s Disease is lifelong, but can be managed effectively through consistent food choices. The tough part is, there are different dietary recommendations for each stage of the condition: active and remission.

The Stages of Crohn’s

Crohn’s Disease is an Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) that causes inflammation throughout the digestive tract. There are two stages of Crohn’s: active flare and remission. During an active flare, inflammation is worse and symptoms are active. During remission, there are no symptoms present. The goal of Crohn’s treatment and management is to achieve and maintain remission. Diet therapy plays a major role in Crohn’s management.

Dietary Recommendations for Crohn’s

There are different dietary recommendations for each stage of Crohn’s, active and remission. The main difference is the amount of dietary fiber included.

Active

When Crohn’s is active, let the bowel rest and heal as much as possible. Therefore, we recommend a low fiber, low residue diet. Foods to eat and foods to avoid

  • Foods to Eat:
    • Low fiber fruit: bananas, cooked fruit, canned fruit
    • Non-cruciferous vegetables: asparagus, potatoes, cucumbers, carrots
    • Refined grain products: white pasta, white rice, white bread
    • Lean protein: fish, chicken, lean pork, eggs, tofu
  • Foods to avoid:
    • Fruits with seeds and skins
    • Dairy
    • Spicy food
    • Caffeine
    • Alcohol
    • High-fat foods: fried food, red meat, fast food

Remission

When Crohn’s is in remission, eat a varied, nutrient-dense diet. Once symptoms have subsided, we recommend introducing high fiber foods to ensure your body is getting adequate nutrition. It’s important, however, to increase fiber-containing foods slowly and carefully to avoid irritation.

  • Foods to Reintroduce in Remission
    • Whole grains: oats, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread
    • Legumes/nuts: beans, nuts, seeds
    • Fruits and vegetables: Reach for colorful, fresh fruits and vegetables. It can be helpful to remove the skin and seeds to avoid symptoms.
    • Dairy

Whenever possible, eat a diet rich in fiber and nutrients. However, when managing a condition like Crohn’s, sometimes it’s important to make temporary dietary adjustments to relieve symptoms. The key is to change your dietary intake based on your needs at the time. Confused about how to manage your Crohn’s flare? Our team can help!

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