Holistic/Alternative Medicine Recommendation?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 8/24/2009 11:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Do any of you have any suggestions for alternative medicine? Couple questions
1) I looked into Omega 3s and the web says it doesn't help. Any others or should I still take them?
2) Probiotics actually upset my stomach, is that possible?
I want to attack the disease from as many fronts as possible, with eastern/western/alternative/prescription tactics. This would definitely help me with your advice. Thanks!

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 8/24/2009 11:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Omega 3's are said to be very helpful in tamping down inflammation. You may have to try a few before you find the right one for you. As for the probiotics, I think it will be the same, you will have to try a few until you find the right one. Some have things in them that aren't agreeable to Crohnies. I take Primadolphilus Reuteri by Natures Way, and I really like them. PB4 another member on the forum was the one who recommended them. I have a very sensitive stomach and these agree with me very well. Hope that helps.
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease and Anxiety/Panic Forum
Crohn's Disease for over 33 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium  w/Vit D, and Xanax as needed. Resections in 2002 and 2005. Also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, and Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
It's scary when you start making the same noises As your coffee maker.
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 8/24/2009 11:38 AM (GMT -7)   
thanks so much for you response
seems like it has lactose in it, but it's very interesting...i think i'm lactose intolerant too lol....

for the most part, i bleed sometimes in my lower intestines

gemini kiwi
Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1136
   Posted 8/24/2009 1:21 PM (GMT -7)   
To me its actually finding the right foods that cause no grief to my plumbing or should I say the least amount of grief. I prepare all my own food and stay away from highly processed rubbish with obscure additives and colourings etc. We are all so very different in what we can tollerate, how about finding some books to read to giver you an idea, I'd like recommend a good one its called the new eating right for a bad gut by James Scala ISBN 0-452-27976-3.
Keeping a food diary to a good idea also until you become more familiar with what you can tollerate easier. I take omega 3 daily if I can remember.
good luck.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1058
   Posted 8/24/2009 2:27 PM (GMT -7)   
I think that diet is the best tool we have for helping ourselves. Diet has helped many people, but it is hard to get right. I agree with GK about the processed food - they tend to add gums and other assorted thickeners (they sound OK because they are vegetable source, but our gut does not digest them and they cause bacterial growth) as one of the most common additions. In addition, there is commonly starch or sugar added that also causes similar problems. I am using the SCD (Specific Carbohydrate Diet) plan and avoiding a very few other foods that disagree with me. I found out that I just did not like most of the foods that I am supposed to avoid, so that made avoiding them no problem.

After diet, there are several vitamins that I add to my diet. Vitamin D is important - I take 2000 IU a day. Vitamins E and C also are helpful in reducing inflammation generally. Of course, a multivitamin with no iron and a calcium/magnesium supplement is automatic because of the common problems with absorption due to gut inflammation from Crohn's.

Other than probiotics, I have not found any other things that I take for a longer term. One trick that seems to work for handling an uptick in symptoms is a one-day fast followed by the more easily digested foods on my diet, gradually working back to my normal diet.

New Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/24/2009 6:33 PM (GMT -7)   
i was just diagnosed (you can see my odyssey in the jst diagnosed at 60 posts here), and my husband has me taking L glutamine. Google it with Crohn's to see more--it doesn't seem to be hurting. I refuse to be on Asacol and prednisone my whole life, but I just got out of the hospital.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 8/24/2009 7:18 PM (GMT -7)   
As for the probiotics, I have tried many different brands and had just as many different results. You need to find the one that works for you. But two things to consider. You do get what you pay for, so don't go bottom of the barrel. You don't have to buy the most expensive, but the cheaper ones will probably not be the best for you. Also, my doctor told me that at some point you may need to switch brands for a month or so because your body gets used to the strains in one brand, then you can switch back. So if you find that the effectiveness is not what it used to be, try switching it up for a month.

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!

Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 8/24/2009 7:48 PM (GMT -7)   
I find it's actually the combination of regular exercise, altering my diet (no more junk at all or processed garbage) the natural anti-inflammatories I take as well as fibre supplements, probiotics that make the biggest difference. At first when I was taking my supplements it certainly made things better but throwing in the regular exercise AND altering my diet made even more of a difference.

My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it! LOL :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 517
   Posted 8/24/2009 8:28 PM (GMT -7)   
1) salmon is an excellent food...I buy the refrigerated, vacuum packaged thin sliced or the smoked (its already expensive enough so dont buy fish oil for omega 3s, just get it direct from the salmon). I prefer the refrigerated salmon any day over canned tuna.
2)probiotics just like any other product is processed so you dont have much control over whats in there but Ive read posts that show it has helped them, I have not tried it.

As far as your overall question...keep a file on your computer with your information from the categories requested. There are so many different meds /approaches that the computer is a great way to organize them. for example i read one day that mexican yams might be beneficial, so when i has some extra bucks in the store I might consider something from such a list. I found some the regular yams so I peeled and cut 1 with potatoes and mashed it. I thought it agreed well ok so I will keep getting them.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 1522
   Posted 8/24/2009 10:25 PM (GMT -7)   
Don't forget that you are not just a disease, you need to help your whole body. Omega 3's benefit us in many ways so as long as they don't bother your Crohn's, keep taking them.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1058
   Posted 8/25/2009 1:23 PM (GMT -7)   
I was recently reading something that said the Evening Primrose Oil is more effective at reducing inflammation then the straight omega 3's in it were by themselves. it also said that it was more effective than most other sources of omega 3.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 177
   Posted 8/25/2009 6:21 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been seeing an acupuncturist since May. I went to her b/c I was having a flare that involved very painful stiffness, swelling and arthritis in my ankles, knee, jaw and right pinky. My GI wanted to put me on Remicade or Imuran. I wanted to hold off on these medications as long as possible. Boy am I glad that I went to her. I have since been managing with weekly acu and a variety of herbs and supplements including the Chinese herb Isatis Cooling (for intestinal inflammation), Vitamins D and E, fish oil, lactobacillus and Align probiotic, a vegetarian glucosamine, resveratrol (antioxidant) and a couple other supplements. Perhaps most intriguing is that my acu ordered a comprehensive stool analysis which revealed that I had no detectable growth of the good bacteria lactobacillus. Healthy guts have billions of these bacteria. We have now moved to correct that, too. I am SO glad that I went to her!!


Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1885
   Posted 8/25/2009 7:07 PM (GMT -7)   

Dagger makes a good point. I'm pretty sure no studies have been able to show any specific benefit of Omega 3s for Crohn's. However, they do so many great things for the body that they might be worth considering.

Culturelle is a pretty good probiotics supplement. We found that even commercial yogurt helped to balance the gut, but prefer to make yogurt at home, aged at least 24 hours, because it is far more powerful, "pure" (no additives), and because the lactose has been broken down by bacteria. 

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