Crohn’s disease can be an uncomfortable and debilitating condition, however some people experience relief by adopting a ketogenic diet.
What is a ketogenic diet? How do you start eating in a way that heals Crohn’s, and is a ketogenic diet realistic long term? Let’s look at the nature of Crohn’s disease, and why eating in a certain way can ease Crohn’s symptoms or even make them go away.
What Is Crohn’s Disease?
Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes many health problems, including rectal bleeding, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and pains, and constipation. It can even put a person’s life in danger, as the condition directly affects the ability to get nutrition. In this way, Crohn’s disease can wreak havoc on one’s life.
How Does a Ketogenic Diet Help?
Having Crohn’s disease is typically uncomfortable. Thankfully, this serious condition may be treatable with ketosis. Ketosis is a metabolic process that occurs when the human body doesn’t have the glucose it needs for energy, so it turns to fat in the body. This results in a build-up of acids, called keytones, in the body.
A ketogenic diet is one that is low in carbohydrates. While some people adopt this diet to lose weight, it can also be a useful diet for Crohn’s sufferers because it limits many inflammatory foods. Crohn’s patients usually suffer from an inflammation of the gut. The two main factors that contribute to this inflammation are diet and stress. Therefore, making a dietary change to eat foods that don’t promote inflammation can be an effective way to treat Crohn’s.
Switching you current Crohn’s diet to a low-carb diet to treat Crohn’s disease is something doctors have been recommending for years. It’s a treatment that you might want to try if you’d like to stay away from pharmaceutical medications to treat your disease. A low-carb, or ketogenic diet, is easy to follow. It is based on consumption of mostly plant-based proteins and fiber-rich foods, such as legumes, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
If you’d like to try a ketogenic diet to manage your Crohn’s condition, talk to your physician to see if this might be an approach that is good for you. Also be sure to check out our article about gluten and Crohn’s for more information about a low-carb diet.