Newish member and confused about Pentasa and dietary issues

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mmrah77
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 9/16/2007 5:55 AM (GMT -7)   
Good morning!

I was diagnosed in March 2006 and started on pentasa and a steroid. I got pregnant right after I'd finished the steroid and delivered the baby 3 weeks early (small intestine ruptured) and had a C-section and bowel resection (last 2 feet small intestine) the same day (Jan 2007). Since then, I'm back on steroids - tapering down - Pentasa and Questran. I also take an iron supplement and get monthly B-12 shots. I've gained about 40 lbs (not a bad thing, though). The questran really controls the D, the B-12 and iron help with my energy level, but what the heck is the Pentasa doing? My aunt (a nurse) now works for a gastroenterologist and was surprised that my GI put me on Pentasa instead of Remicade...she said her doc rarely prescribes this.

My other issue is with food. I have really really smelly gas only at night - while sleeping. I've taken phasyme and according to my hubby, it does help with frequency of gas (my bombs - as he puts it) but it doesn't really help with the odor - and unfortunately for both of us, it causes major pain and bloating so I prefer not to take it (long story short, he was trying to be supportive and not embarrass me by NOT telling me I still have a gas problem - I thought I was getting better through dietary restrictions). I've eliminated dairy, soy and corn products from my diet; I've cut down on the known gas offenders - beans, broccoli, potatoes, etc. My next step is to go to unprocessed foods - the expense does scare me a bit, but I found a place (unfortunately about 15 miles away - one way) that sells an awesome rotisserie chicken (free range, no antibiotics, organic diet, etc) for $5.99 - I could eat that nearly every day - (maybe I'll have to!) I've found that some kosher products help - I don't know why.

My questions are do you have major smelly gas and how do you control it? Are you pro/con Remicade? Does smoking make your problems worse (and how)? What about medical marijuana? What about coffee, caffeine, sodas, sweet teas? How the heck can you eliminate soy when it is in nearly every product? Do you find that unprocessed/organic foods help you eat a wider variety of foods? If I only cook my fruits and vegetables will that help - as in, no more potato chips - unless I get a health food store brand- but I could eat boiled/mashed potatoes if I make them myself?

Thank you guys, I really would appreciate your input!

dustspeck
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 565
   Posted 9/16/2007 6:35 AM (GMT -7)   
hi! i am new to this and new to the board so i am sure other people will be able to give you better advice. i am on 4000mg of pentasa a day & also taking entocort. i am on pentasa to coat the ulcers in my terminal ileum. with diet & pentasa i really think that has helped my d. though i am still having a good deal of pain. somedays are ok, others are terrible. if you have inflammed ulcers i think that caffeine & sugary drinks can be bothersome. i drink a lot of water. if you are not so much into water i have found dasani flavored water will squash a sugary drink craving. and smoking cigarettes can also irritate ulcers. other than that, i am having trouble getting a diet plan together. just trying to stick to the low residue diet as much as i can!

good luck with everything!

belleenstein
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 9/16/2007 7:16 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Mmrah:

If you are on questran and it is helping that means you are suffering from fat-malabsorption. That can be a major cause of the smelly gas. Try to cut down on the fat in your diet -- for instance, try baked potato chips instead of regular if you must. I have found a "Kettle" brand of baked potato chips that meets my cravings and is low fat. I also find that when I use questran it contributes to the smelly gas. That's another reason I have reduced the fat in my diet. It allows me to get by with less questran. I only use it when I know I'm going to have a high fat meal (when I'm on the road eating out for instance) or when I start having symptoms. I have a lot of diarrhea, but diarrhea caused be fat mal-absorption is different -- greasy, gassy, explosive, large. Have that and it is time for some questran. Works great, but I don't like the side-effects -- gas, bloating, smell -- so dietary changes have really helped me minimize how much I need.

Adding yoghurt to my diet has really helped too. I use Liberty plain organic yoghurt. It has several live cultures.
Belleenstein:

30+ years living with Crohn's.


mmrah77
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 9/16/2007 7:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Ok guys, I did some research - what I probably should have done first - and found some great info on this page alone - http://www.healingwell.com/library/ibs/article.asp?author=vanvorous&id=1

This author may have just saved my marriage!

It looks like part of my dietary problems is due to the order in which I eat them, not necessarily that I eat them. I'm feeling optimistic now!

I was drinking orange juice first thing every morning - with my questran - and that probably was setting me up for a bad day already. Then, I ate a sausage biscuit with my coffee - plain sausage because I'd noticed problems with eggs and cheese - duh - seems like it was a problem with the sausage and biscuit actually. And then for lunch, my coke wasn't going down so well with a wheat bread sandwich - a blt, tuna or chicken salad OR a salad, which I'd given up - lately. Then dinner, which is always meat based in my house...last night I made beef stew, even. That link recommends only soluble fiber first on an empty stomach.

I'm going to switch to oatmeal in the AM as a first choice. OOH, I can have a salad again if I eat it at the end of the meal instead of at the beginning - after a serving of rice or bread. Gosh, I could cry!

Ya know, to make it easier on me, I think I'll just eat what I've been feeding my 8 month old - oatmeal; mix in a little bit of fruit; some cooked veggies. Hmm. Maybe a bit bland, but ANY change is worth it!

mmrah77
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 9/16/2007 7:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Belleenstein:

thank you for your comments, I want to make sure I'm getting the message properly...

smelly gas is from NOT absorbing fat properly? And cutting down on dietary fat should help? Ok, now that I think about it, I do have a pretty high fat diet - I tend to cook better on the weekends and have less issues. I think I'm a smart person, but this disease just makes me feel inept sometimes.

also, what is the name of the kettle chip - that is also my favorite - particularly barbecue....that and baked doritos - which I seem to be able to eat in very small doses even though it is a corn product...

I was worried about yoghurt - I thought it was a dairy product - I seem to have minor issues with dairy right now. I'll check out the brand the next time I get to the health food store, though.

Thanks again for your comments!

bektold
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 456
   Posted 9/16/2007 8:16 AM (GMT -7)   
The live cultures in yogurt eat up most of the lactose, so most people can tolerate it better than other dairy products.  Organic cottage cheese often has live cultures, too (check the packaging) so that could be another option.
 
Personally, I steer clear of caffiene and sodas.  Stimulants keep me in the bathroom, and carbonation makes me belch even more than I already do.  I try to watch my sugar because I'm on Prednisone and I don't want to encourage blood sugar problems.  Also, I have a stubborn case of thrush and sugar feeds the yeast.
 
Pentasa is a topical anti-inflammatory that coats your intestines.  It's pretty mild, as IBD drugs go.  My doctor wants me on Remicade, too, but I don't think he plans to take me off the Pentasa. 
 
Good luck finding your dietary/medication solution.  Isn't it fun?  I hope you feel better soon.

belleenstein
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 9/16/2007 9:25 AM (GMT -7)   
Fat malabsorption isn't the onlly thing that will produce smelly gas and diarrhea but it is one of the offenders. "Kettle Creek" is the brand name, made in Seattle, but you have to get the baked kind, not the regular chips. Unfortunately they cost more, but I just need a handful to satisfy my craving.
Belleenstein:

30+ years living with Crohn's.

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