Crohn’s disease is a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that causes inflammation in the lining of the digestive system. It may go without saying for those with Crohn's disease that the symptoms can be quite difficult to deal with such as abdominal pain and diarrhea. During a flare up - certain foods and beverages can further worsen these symptoms[1].

While there is no cure for Crohn’s disease, all hope is not lost! Following a balanced, nutrient-rich diet may help in managing your symptoms. Some items to consider incorporating into your diet include:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Calcium-rich foods
  • Protein
  • Fibre-rich foods

See also: What is Crohn’s Disease? Symptoms and Causes


What are the best foods to eat with Crohn's disease?


Although there is no set ‘diet plan’ for those with Crohn’s disease, a healthy and balanced diet is always a great place to start!

See also: Anti-Inflammatory Foods: Foods to Fight Inflammation


Fruits and vegetables


Fruits and vegetables are a great source of vitamins, minerals and fibre which is why it’s important to take in around five portions per day.

If you have trouble eating fruit and vegetables because of the fibre intake, try speaking with your doctor to see what other options are available.


Calcium-rich foods


A great way of getting calcium into your day to day diet is through calcium-rich foods, these include milk, cheese and yogurt.

For those with Crohn’s who are lactose intolerant, choosing lactose-free dairy products or using an enzyme product should help with your calcium intake! [2]


Protein


The role protein plays in growth and repair makes it an essential part of anyone's diet! Some of the most reliable sources include lean meat, poultry and fish.

Some great sources of protein for vegetarians include tofu, beans, peas, nutritional yeast and lentils.

See also: What is the Function of C-Reactive Protein (CRP)?


Starch-rich foods


Starchy foods are a great source of energy and provide some pretty important nutrients such as B vitamins, iron, calcium and folate. Pasta, rice, potatoes and bread are all starchy foods and are all a delicious addition to your daily diet!

It’s common for those with Crohn’s to have unfavourable reactions to starchy foods, if this occurs, check in with your doctor[3].

See also: How do you Reduce Inflammation in the Body?


What foods trigger Crohn’s disease?


According to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, there are foods that those with the disease may want to avoid during flare ups and some foods may even trigger some unwanted symptoms such as abdominal pain and unusual bowel movements.

Some foods that may potentially cause triggers include:

  • High fibre foods
  • Lactose
  • Sugary foods
  • High fat foods
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine

See also: What Causes a Change In Bowel Movement?


What can I drink with Crohn’s disease?


Unfortunately, there is no direct answer to what people with Crohn’s can drink as, similar to food, not all beverages affect people with the disease in the same way.

With that in mind, there are some drinks that may potentially aggravate symptoms [4], these include:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Coffee
  • Sugary juices
  • Soda
  • Milk

When it comes to testing Crohn’s disease, one of the main markets is C-Reactive Protein (CRP). Although elevated CRP levels are non-specific, they may indicate the presence of an underlying inflammatory disease such as Crohn’s disease.

LetsGetChecked’s at-home CRP Test allows you to check your CRP levels from the comfort of your own home. Online results will be available within 5 days and our dedicated clinical team will be available to answer any questions you may have throughout the process.

You should consider taking the test if:

  • You are at risk for chronic inflammatory diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or vasculitis
  • You are at risk for Crohn's disease
  • You are at risk for bowel disorders
  • You are overweight
  • You require a risk assessment for cardiovascular diseases
  • You require a risk assessment for cancers

See also: What Does High CRP Mean?



References

  1. Mayo Clinic. Crohn’s Disease. Online: Mayoclinic.org, 2020
  2. Crohn’s and Colitis UK. Food. Online: Crohnsandcolitis.org.uk
  3. Crohn’s and Colitis UK. Food. Online: Crohnsandcolitis.org.uk
  4. Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. What Should I Eat? Online: Crohnscolitisfoundation.org