Where's the evidence diet has nothing to do with UC?

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men8ifr
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 124
   Posted 8/12/2008 8:42 AM (GMT -6)   
It seems obvious that diet could affect UC and since the doc's say diet has nothing to do with it I assume a load of double blind placebo multi-centre trials were done which showed nothing significant? Anyone know where they are or can point me at diet related trials?
 
Or is it really a big conspiracy and the drug companies run the world and there's no money in it for them to research diet?

MitzMN
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Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 624
   Posted 8/12/2008 8:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Not to be confrontational, but your query begs another query: Where is the evidence diet does have something to do with it?

I believe the general thought is that diet can increase symptoms but it doesn't create the disease itself. I'm unsure if diet makes the disease become more symptomatic by increasing damage to the mucosal lining of the gut.

For me, diet plays no part in my disease process, which, thankfully, is very well under control.

It will be interesting to see the responses.

Mitz
Sporadic proctitis since about 1985. Mother had J-pouch surgery 1983.
DX'd with clostridium difficile in 2000. Pred, two courses of Flagyl, then Vancomycin finally got rid of it. 2001 colonoscopy dx'd left-sided UC. . Treated with prednisone, Rowasa, Asacol. Asacol not working, switched to Imuran. Three small flares since in 2002, 2005, and 2007, brought under control with steroid and Rowasa enemas. Lap Chole performed October 26, 2007, after gall bladder attack in June, '07.
Daily meds: 100 mg Azathioprine and 225 mg Effexor XR (for chronic, longstanding depression), many vitamins and Primadophilus Reuteri


kazygirl
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 955
   Posted 8/12/2008 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   
diet plays no part with me either.
been there, tried this, tried that.... nothing changed.
not better, not worse...
steph - 32 - female - UC since 2000
currently flaring again..  grrr! (triggered by stress - grrr)
mesalazine granules 3g x1 a day (much nicer than a million tablets a day)
enteric coated fish oil -omega 3 (so they get all the way to my colon)
vitamin D3 x1 a day
prednisolone 25mg x1 a day (ick ick and did i say ick?)
tumeric capsules x3 a day
 
 
 


GardenerJames
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 616
   Posted 8/12/2008 8:52 AM (GMT -6)   
My diet can affect my symptoms, but I think the point that Dr.s try to make is slightly different. What my Dr says is that food doesn't CAUSE UC. Which is a little different than how it can affect your symptoms.
James
Asacol 4 tabs 2x daily www.myspace.com/gardenerjames
Forvia once a day - Probiotic twice daily - Methotrexate 3 pills once a week - Actonel once a week
Calcium supp. - 1 mg Folic Acid daily - Omega-3 once daily
13th Remicade infusion End of April


suebear
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5698
   Posted 8/12/2008 8:57 AM (GMT -6)   
Diet never affected my disease either and I tried many of them to get in remission. A short list is: SCD diet, being a vegetarian, not being a vegetarian, the fermintation diet, low fiber diet, high fiber diet, and the list goes on. I found that some foods made me more uncomfortable when flaring but I never found a particular food to cause symtoms. The ulcers of UC are in the colon, when food finally reaches the area it is well digested and just being stored. I never got the connection.

Sue
dx proctitis in 1987
dx UC in 1991, was stable until 1998

1998 started prednisone, asacol, pentasa, nortriptylene, ativan, 6MP, rowasa enemas and suppositories, hydrocortisone enemas, tried the SCD diet, being a vegetarian, omega 3s, flax, pranic healing, yoga, acupuncture, probiotics

2000 lost all my B-12 stores and became anemic

2001 opted for j-pouch surgery- now living life med-free


bbc
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 1580
   Posted 8/12/2008 9:21 AM (GMT -6)   
GardenerJames said...
My diet can affect my symptoms, but I think the point that Dr.s try to make is slightly different. What my Dr says is that food doesn't CAUSE UC. Which is a little different than how it can affect your symptoms.
James

+1...Foods that are less likely to cause loose stool gas etc are best when in a flair...I think a diet high in sugar or artificial sugar is also not a good idea.
Mild to Moderate Pancolitis
Dx'd 05/2007
3 Lialda per day
Generic Rowasa daily or every other night
Probiotics, Bowel Soother, Fish Oil, Calcium, Multi Vitamin and Melatonin
Trying to reduce sugar in my diet but cannot tolerate artificial sweetners
I excersice daily
Did I happen to mention I HATE this disease!!!


Kiss520
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 742
   Posted 8/12/2008 9:33 AM (GMT -6)   
I read a book about diet and UC, and I think the problem with pinpointing foods is that there are so many variables (quality of food, amount, etc.) and its very hard to monitor someone's food intake for a long period with great accuracy.  Instead of doing a "study," the author simply gave UC sufferers questionaires and determined the most common/frequent culprits for UC aggravation. 
 
My doctor has contradicted himself in the same sentence by saying that "diet will not effect your UC but if there are foods that bother you, you shouldn't eat them."  Uh, what?  (I've mentioned in other posts that I think he's an idiot.)
 
I absolutely respond badly to certain foods.  I've had slight success with a couple diets I've tried, but nothing worth continuing.  Coincidentally, I'm starting the Specific Carbohydrate Diet today.  Wish me luck, as its a LOT of work.  Let us know if you find anything in your search...
 
Good luck!

Katie, 30.   Chicago 'burbs.
DX:  Ulcerative Proctitis (10cm) January '08
Current Treament:  Rowasa 60 ML 2X daily, Cortenama 100 ML 1X daily, Bentyl 20 MG (as needed), and multivitamin daily.
Diet/Exercise:  No fructose, lactose, sorbitol, mannitol or wheat bran fiber.  Daily yoga, walking, or cardio w/weights.
Previous Treatment:  Canasa suppositories, Cortifoam, Prednisone, Colazal, Symex DuoTabs, Vitamins.
Status:  Flare (showing improvement)
 
 


seconder
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 8/12/2008 10:36 AM (GMT -6)   
I never put much stock into the idea that diet had an effect on uc until recently because it didn't seem like anything I ate (or didn't eat) had any real effect on the symtoms of uc. I've been in Germany the last week or so and I felt great. Then it dawned on me that I didn't have any milk or yogurt and very little cheese. One bm a day, no bleeding, no urgency. . . . Remission? First time in a year and a half. I still feel great.

I don't know if it's the milk, so I've slowly added it back the last couple of days and I'll see what happens. I mentioned it to my mother offhand, and she said, "Oh, when you were a child, you couldn't eat any milk at all."

While in Germany I saw a homeopath MD who went over his treatment plan with me. His line of thinking is that diet doesn't cause uc but it can effect it, especially if a person has problems digesting certain foods or has allergies to them. He recommended an igG4 test. I figure I'll follow up and see what happens.

The potential problem to all this may be the absolute variety of possibilities.

pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 8/12/2008 10:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Genetics CAUSE IBD, food may very well be a trigger, even the CCFC has not ruled out food as being a culprit with IBD, it would be pretty arrogant to do so when not enough is known yet.

It can take yrs (not days) for a body to adjust to diet change, going from eating unhealthy to completely healthy will not show results of perfect health in a matter of days or weeks, that's for sure.

People often have food allergies that they are not even aware of especially when they have a disease like IBD or even IBS, even my severe lactose intolerance was masked by my disease and it wasn't until I got tested that I knew I had lactose issues.
 
Bottom line, you eat junk, your body will be junk one way or another, it might not guarantee you'll get IBD (as genetics are involved with that) but one way or another a persons health will reflect what their diet is like.

:)


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


seconder
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 8/12/2008 10:56 AM (GMT -6)   
I've had a pretty well balanced diet most of my life.  (The college years did feature a lot of pizza. . . .)  But it seems people do actually feel better pretty quickly from a diet change.  In many cases, blood tests will show some of the positive effects of dietary change in a month.
 
It's my guess that many people with uc have eated a pretty standard Western/ American diet which -- from my point of view -- isn't all that healthy.  Once the uc kicks in, there is a reason to eat a more balanced diet, and many people do, and they feel better.  There's probably a world of good in just switching from white bread to whole grain; if anything the extra fiber will help bulk the stool.  (And I'll add the seemingly obligatory caveat:  "All people are different.  Fiber may make you uncomfortable.")
 
The thought that it may takes years to achieve benefit from a change in eating habits shouldn't dissuade anyone from attempting those changes.

princesa
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 2204
   Posted 8/12/2008 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
No one is going to do diet related trials because it's too difficult to legislate or control what subjects eat or their willingness to be honest about their intake. Dietary modifications take time to go into effect and would require long-term study. In my experience, they are more successful when coupled with other factors such as increased omega-3 supplementation and healthy lifestyle changes like regular exercise and rest, so there are too many variables. But most of all, there's no funding for the study of dietary treatments - or any other natural, alternative treatment - because no one stands to gain financially from it. Call it a conspiracy if you like, but it's simple economics.


Diagnosed with ulcerative colitis spring 1999.
 
Maintenance dose sulfasalazine.
Probiotics, l-glutamine and fish oil caps. George's aloe vera juice. Oregano oil antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal.
 
 


sushik
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 35
   Posted 8/12/2008 12:16 PM (GMT -6)   
The topic of this thread relates to one of the biggest difficulties I have with this disease...explaining the complexity and the severity to the people close to me. The average person equates GI issues with what they've experienced: upset stomach, gas, diarreah, etc. All of these things have been directly caused by something they ate within 10 hours before the symptoms appeared -- so it's easy to see the direct correlation.

When average people get these symptoms, many times it's because they ate or consumed something suspect...ie. way too much beer with some wine and long island ice teas, or a chili cheese burger with extra jalapenos, or some potato salad that looked strange but tasted ok at the time...or all of those at the same time.

So our common sense tells us, what's coming out of us is due to what is (recently) going in us. However, it's not that simple. And I struggle with explaining that to the people close to me. They tend to blame me and my food choices for my flare ups.

People need to understand that UC is an autoimmune disease -- there is a malfunction in our immune system. Our immune system (when we flare) suddenly sees our large intestines as an intruder or an enemy and targets it for destruction. White blood cells get sent out, latch on to our colon cells, and start to disintegrate them. Blood vessels branch out into our colon walls to help deliver the white blood cells. All this leads to inflammation and bleeding.

It all comes down to the immune system malfunction and it thinking that the colon is a foreign and damaging object.

So, does food play a part in what causes or persists this disease? Well, not in the "obvious" and simple "cause and effect" way that most people look at diarrhea. That chili cheeseburger didn't send a message to your immune system telling it to start to attack your colon.
31 yr old male
Diagnosed: 7/07 - UC - Pancolitis
Current Meds: 2 Rowasa enemas/day ; 6 Asacol / day


LightenUp
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 8/12/2008 1:46 PM (GMT -6)   
I haven't had much success in trying to track if certain foods caused specific symptoms until recently. I've been bothered with gas for the better portion of a year (with uc, I've learned to treat gas the same as a bm!) and have been [slowly] eliminating various things from my diet - including probiotics - to find the "smoking gun." My GI told me to replace milk with Silk about two months ago, and BINGO - gas is gone. What a difference - I now only deal with the seven or eight loose bm's a day.

Darryl, 58, Male, FL
Dx w/ moderate UC in 2000
Meds: (None seem to work so far, including Remicade)
> Colazol, 6/day
> Methotrexate, 1 shot/week
> Prednizone, 10mg/day
Good news? Never seem to have complications from any meds.


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 8/12/2008 2:37 PM (GMT -6)   
It's the way bacteria is being percieved in our intestines that makes our system over-attack and bring on the symptoms of IBD...knowledge of this recently brings a strong tie to bacteria and how our systems react to it...which is why probiotics have become recognized as more than likely beneficial by the research community for IBD.

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


Mackster
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Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 768
   Posted 8/12/2008 4:01 PM (GMT -6)   
"It all comes down to the immune system malfunction and it thinking that the colon is a foreign and damaging object."
 
Or possibly something inside the colon?
 
You would have to assume that hot spicey foods eg. Vindaloo curries/jalapeno peppers/chilli/suicide chicken-wing sauce cannot be kind to your colon wall.
 
It's all very well saying they (hot spicey foods) are 'digested' before they reach the bowel, but the fact that you can have a painful burning BM the next morning tells you something.

 

seconder
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 8/12/2008 4:16 PM (GMT -6)   
That's why I never thought diet had much to do with uc.  I can and do eat spicy food with abandon and have never had a problem.  If anything, a super spicy vindaloo -- just had one last week -- will make me feel better.  (There are anti-inflammatory properties in hot peppers.  I've always wondered if that has anything to do with it.)
 
 
 
 

jujub
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 8/12/2008 4:33 PM (GMT -6)   
What's meant when they say "diet doesn't affect it" is that there is no evidence that X foods affect everyone with UC. If 75% of the patients they saw had documented increased symptoms after eating Jello, then they would pay attention. The problem with anecdotal evidence in UC is that it comes and goes, waxes and wanes on its own, so unless most people react to the same thing the same way, it's not really reliable.

I think most of us have foods we don't tolerate when in flare, and those of us who also have IBS may have foods that bother us even when we're in remission. However, in all the years UC has been treated, there hasn't been a shred of scientific evidence that food causes UC or even flares.

People, however, will believe as they wish. Multitudes of people still believe sugar causes hyperactivity even though there have been repeated, highly controlled studies proving that false.

Believe what you wish. Eat what you wish. Spend your money as you wish. I'm in remission and eat whatever I want with no problem.
Judy
 
Moderate to severe left-sided UC (21 cm) diagnosed 2001.
Avascular necrosis in both shoulders is my "forever" gift from Entocort.
Colazal,  Remicade, Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri. In remission since April, 2006.
 
Co-Moderator UC Forum
Please remember to consult your health care provider when making health-related decisions.


seconder
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 8/12/2008 5:21 PM (GMT -6)   

True enough.  I can't say I've ever come across anything that says uc is caused by diet.  I probably wouldn't believe it if I did, but I'm slowly coming around to the idea that "having an affect" is a different matter.   

Unfortunately, there's very little that's reliable about uc:  It's a poorly understood disease.  I don't know that anyone should set the bar too high, especially when altering diet in a sane manner is fairly benign.  Even the standard treatments don't offer a 75% success rate, but it doesn't mean they aren't prescribed.  Remicade is prescribed with a ~45% success rate. 

There are people who think NSAIDs cause a flare and medical evidence is trending away from that idea.

 

 

 


ediekristen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1366
   Posted 8/12/2008 5:38 PM (GMT -6)   
I wish I was lucky enough in that food never has an effect on my UC but it certainly does... But it's not always a specific food and the same food doesn't always have the same effect either. There are times when literally EVERYTHING I eat makes me go to the bathroom a hundred times and causes me severe pain and discomfort. There are times when I will venture to eat a taco and get violently ill and times when it does nothing. Most of the time I say "Screw it, why should I deprive myself of the foods I love because they make my stomach hurt... If everything is making me hurt anyway I might as well enjoy it when it's going in."
 
Food in general just does not go well with my UC and I only have no pain or BMs when I simply don't eat. Which of course isn't healthy but it's sort of like the lab rats who stop pushing a button after they get shocked so many times... My body just starts saying "No way, I'm not hungry, forget about it, I don't want that in me". shakehead

 

Got2Believe
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 436
   Posted 8/12/2008 6:54 PM (GMT -6)   

Go on on a junk food diet with alcohol then say diet doesn't affect your UC symptoms. Bet you get the runs...Keep doing it and bet you start bleeding... That would be my test for you all to find out if Diet Affects UC.

I wish I could be like my peers more than anything. Go to the local hang out and have some fried buffalo wings and a brewski, but I just cant. (of course I can, but I'll end up paying dearly for it...) I wish I could eat whatever and take my meds and reach a wonderful remission, but that's just not happening... Sorry to sound so pecamistic, but I am a big diet advocate.

With all due respect, eat what you want, live how you want, be who you want, but don't complain about your health or your symptoms if you don't make major changes.

 


                                                                                         
28/M/TX single parent of gorgeous 2.5yo girl (revised 5/8/08)
Severe Colitis (pancolitis) since January 9, 2005
currently:  4 month flaring;improving; 2bm/day; no visible blood
RX/day:  Currently 20mg of prednisone per day. Lost job and insurance 10/2007 and stopped taking asacol and Imuran cold turkey
OTC: seldom use probiotics, vitamins & other natural treatments
Diet: SCD helps tremendously, but am not strictly on it.
Other: Prayer, food combos, enzymes, good posture, chewing more, etc.


jujub
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 8/12/2008 7:16 PM (GMT -6)   
LOL, G2B, that diet would have given me awful D. before I had UC.
Judy
 
Moderate to severe left-sided UC (21 cm) diagnosed 2001.
Avascular necrosis in both shoulders is my "forever" gift from Entocort.
Colazal,  Remicade, Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri. In remission since April, 2006.
 
Co-Moderator UC Forum
Please remember to consult your health care provider when making health-related decisions.


Got2Believe
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 436
   Posted 8/12/2008 7:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hehe. That was basically my college diet and I played college sports. boy was I ignorant back then. I never had D until after college when I got UC.

pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 8/12/2008 7:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Got2Believe said...

Go on on a junk food diet with alcohol then say diet doesn't affect your UC symptoms. Bet you get the runs...Keep doing it and bet you start bleeding... That would be my test for you all to find out if Diet Affects UC.

I wish I could be like my peers more than anything. Go to the local hang out and have some fried buffalo wings and a brewski, but I just cant. (of course I can, but I'll end up paying dearly for it...) I wish I could eat whatever and take my meds and reach a wonderful remission, but that's just not happening... Sorry to sound so pecamistic, but I am a big diet advocate.

With all due respect, eat what you want, live how you want, be who you want, but don't complain about your health or your symptoms if you don't make major changes.

 

I totally agree with you G2Believe!!!
 
Just because one is in remission and feels they can eat what they want doesn't mean that diet doesn't play a negative role with IBD...especially when a flare could be more easily around the corner for those who go ahead and eat what they want *unhealthy/risky foods* and then wonder why they're flaring again.
 
I eat totally healthy and I'm still not in remission with my crohn's colitis, could be because of the complications with my perianal crohn's skin tags but I do know I feel alot better all around eating healthy compared to when I didn't.
 
The proof is in the puddin'!
 
:)
My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)


quincy
Elite Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 30593
   Posted 8/12/2008 11:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Any extremes don't seem to go well with diseased colons.
There are always a few on a path of personal self-destruction who don't want to use meds and also make the biggest deal of so-called food flares.

If one's colon is in a state of friability...fragility...pushing the body's capability to deal will only make sense to have it react in the least resistant area. If it's the colon, it only makes sense one would see it as food intake, not as a stupid idea of pushing the body beyond it's limits at any given time.

Yes, I can eat what I want...I may get gas, loose stool or on occasion diarrhea...but that would only last until the "offending" food is out. I've never had it cause a flare or have a worse flare. I personally saw flaring as a way of getting foods out faster rather than suffering too long.

Binge drinking can cause a whole host of bad symptoms in the body....not only the colon. As being from a family of alcoholics....interestingly, alcohol has never agreed with me. I drank as a teen, but never seemed to have any gastro side effects except puking.

Listen to your body.....if foods seem to cause you distress either physically or mentally...don't have them.

q
*Heather*Status: mini flare Dec 28... tapered to every 4th night
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~5ASA: Asacol (6 daily) + Salofalk enemas (increase for flares tapered to maintenance)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~vitamins/minerals/supplements 
~Probiotic 3(Natural Factors Protec) bedtime + 1 (Primadophilus Reuteri) occasionally
~multi-digestive enzymes as needed ....zymactive 3 - 5x daily
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux) Effexor XR 75mg;  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!


ucwarrior
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 298
   Posted 8/12/2008 11:57 PM (GMT -6)   
I believe food and the intestinal creatures it feeds has about 70% to do with UC. The other influences are psychosomatic stress levels (you carry stress in your guts) and genetic predisposition to the disease itself. You can eat the perfect diet for your body type and still have a flare but would it still be as bad if you hadn't cheated with that cake at work or that 42 grams of high fructose corn syrup you just drank in that soda? Or that undigestible artificial sweetener that just turned into formaldehyde? Yes, aspartame turns into formaldehyde! If any don't believe me, email me and I'll drop some organic chem on you formula style. The trick is to listen to your body. Find your food triggers, don't smoke or drink (if you have UC you already know what too much booze does I learned the hard way at school! :( Take generous (as much as your body can take) amounts of soluble fiber, digestive enzymes, HMF probiotics, and lower not cease but lower sugars, avoid refined breadflours and yeasty doughs. Inspect your stool as frequently as possible because thats your colon health sitting there in the hopper. Just my opinion.
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