Watch out for carrageenan

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SwollenColon
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 190
   Posted 3/7/2008 1:42 AM (GMT -6)   
This is a thickening ingredient found in some foods & drinks. After some trial and error, some of the foods that I thought I couldn't tolerate turned out not to be the actual food, but a single ingredient, carrageenan. Since I've started excluding foods that contain this ingredient, I've had less issues. Google it.....it's potentially bad stuff. There are opponents and proponents of it's use, but for me I've discovered it's definitely something to be avoided. I just wonder what other additives/preservatives there are out there that if avoided would relieve more symptoms.

pb4
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Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 3/7/2008 2:22 AM (GMT -6)   
Apparently ALL preservatives and additives are suppose to be avoided by IBDers, that's why it's said that fast-foods and processed foods/beverages (both of which have additives and preservatives) can exacerbate IBD symptoms...and as far as artificial sweeteners go, all sugar alcohols (anything ending in "tol", sorbitol, xylitol, mannitol, malitotol, ect) should all be avoided as well, it's known that as little as 1/2 stick of Extra gum can cause gas, D and bloating.

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


pb4
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Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 3/7/2008 2:29 AM (GMT -6)   

 

http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-carrageenan.htm

interesting read in this second article about how many people suffer with a bad gut all due to carrageenan.

 

:)


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


relativelyquantum
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Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 196
   Posted 3/7/2008 3:58 PM (GMT -6)   
I've also noticed issues with food that contained carrageenan.  Many soy products, ice cream, and so many other things have it in.  It is also mentioned in the book Digestive Wellness, by Elizabeth Lipski, as a way to produce an inflammatory response in animals that have something similar to UC, so it may be wise to avoid it (I believe it is also found in brown and red seaweed).  Sounds like good advice.  Thanks for posting.  Many are likely not aware of this.
Pancolitis '04
Yet to ever go into remission: maintaining at the moment
Taking Rowasa, Probiotics, Fish Oil, Folic Acid, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Borage Oil, Iron, Oregano Oil

Post Edited (relativelyquantum) : 3/7/2008 2:10:48 PM (GMT-7)


Sara14
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Date Joined Mar 2007
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   Posted 3/7/2008 7:40 PM (GMT -6)   
relativelyquantum - carageenan is an extract taken from red seaweed. That's where it comes from. I just read an article the other day saying carageenan is completely harmless and completely natural...I can't find it though. It was talking about a study that showed degraded carrageenan (poligeenan) may cause ulcers in the GI tract. That is different than the carageenan in food, which they found to be not harmful. After testing samples of foods containing carageenan, the researchers found no poligeenan. I'm not up-to-date with other possible studies on it though.

As I sit here and eat my carrageenan-filled yogurt, I found another study (from 2001) that says carrageenan may be a possible cause of IBD. It's a very long read... http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G1-81760722.html


24 years old
Diagnosed with UC March 2007; yet to go into complete remission
Asacol 4 tablets 3x/day
Rowasa (generic) - nightly; Canasa (1,000 mg) in the morning
Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri 2/day; Chewable multivitamin; Metamucil; Viactiv

Post Edited (Sara14) : 3/7/2008 5:45:56 PM (GMT-7)


relativelyquantum
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Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 196
   Posted 3/7/2008 8:49 PM (GMT -6)   
Sara, that is an interesting point. But I wonder if that study was conducted on "normal" people and UCers would have a problem with it--you think? I remember eating some soy and rice cheese for an alternative and it not only had a funny almost hot aftertaste, but it seemed to either upset my stomach or create greater urgency. Whatever the case, it made sense at the time to just avoid that stuff, especially after I noticed similar affects in many other foods I buy. The correlation seemed to be the case after these considerations when viewed in light of what someone mentioned on this forum a while back and then reading it in Digestive Wellness (of course, she was only citing it as a precautionary). But who knows, may it is just the poligeenan that makes the difference and what has been used in the animal studies.
Pancolitis '04
Yet to ever go into remission: maintaining at the moment
Taking Rowasa, Probiotics, Fish Oil, Folic Acid, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Borage Oil, Iron, Oregano Oil


Sara14
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Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4509
   Posted 3/7/2008 9:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Yeah, I'm not disagreeing with anyone that it causes problems. I really know very little about it. The first study I was referring to didn't look at humans, only rats, guinea pigs and monkeys. I think this is the link, but this might be a different study:
http://www.ehponline.org/members/2001/109p983-994tobacman/tobacman-full.html


24 years old
Diagnosed with UC March 2007; yet to go into complete remission
Asacol 4 tablets 3x/day
Rowasa (generic) - nightly; Canasa (1,000 mg) in the morning
Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri 2/day; Chewable multivitamin; Metamucil; Viactiv

Post Edited (Sara14) : 3/7/2008 7:23:46 PM (GMT-7)


jwogie
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 35
   Posted 3/8/2008 9:22 AM (GMT -6)   
I was using liquid coffee creamer (with carrageenan) and it was causing me problems, but when I told my doctor, he looked at me like I had three heads!  I've switched to powdered creamer and maybe it's all in my head, but I am feeling much better (with help of meds).
 
- 46 year old; female
- diagnosed with UC in Sept 1991
- appendectomy and 7 years remission
- almost constant flare-ups in past 5 years
- currently on 3 mg Entocort, fish oil--feeling good!
- Lialda started 8/21, 2 pills per day


DanthaMan
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Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 495
   Posted 3/10/2008 10:30 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for pointing this out. I had some soy ice cream last week, and bought some more this week. I have since almost doubled my bm's per day, and I was trying to figure out why. I thought it might have been the soy ice cream but wasnt sure. Being that I have restricted my diet, it was one of the few things that was new.

If somebody could find a list of foods its added in, that would be great.
4.5 mg of LDN.
Humira
NSI Candida Yeast Management


SwollenColon
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 190
   Posted 3/10/2008 11:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Probably won't find a list of foods containing it, but it's listed in the ingredients list on the container or label.

relativelyquantum
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 196
   Posted 3/11/2008 4:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Yep. Some have it and others don't. Reading labels is always a good idea.
Pancolitis '04
Yet to ever go into remission: maintaining at the moment
Taking Rowasa, Probiotics, Fish Oil, Folic Acid, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Borage Oil, Iron, Oregano Oil


Rio in Maryland
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Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 891
   Posted 3/11/2008 4:35 PM (GMT -6)   

After reading this post, I had a look at what's in my fridge to see if anything contains carrageenan.

One item that came up with it as an ingredient was 'Ensure'.  I normally water down a couple of them and drink them over the course of the day when things aren't looking too good.  Obviously, I'm now having second thoughts about drinking Ensure.


Rio, 32 yr old male - diagnosed with UC in 07/2006.
 
Alternative therapies for several months (SCD, ayurvedic treatment, VSL#3): didn't work and became anaemic. Canasa, 2 daily: remission for a month then flared-up.
07/07-11/07: 4800mg Asacol (6 x 400mg, twice a day) & Aloe Elite.
Completed first (6 week) tapered course of Pred in 10/07, flaring up since coming off it.
11/07: Switched from Asacol to 12 x 750mg Colazal (3 weeks on it and symptoms got worse)
12/07: Asacol 4800 mg, Started Azathioprine 175mg, Prednisone taper from 60mg - Now on 10mg; 2/08: added 2 Pentasa x 1mg on alternate days.

Post Edited (Rio in Maryland) : 3/11/2008 3:40:54 PM (GMT-6)


SwollenColon
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 190
   Posted 3/11/2008 11:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Why do you drink Ensure in the first place?
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