What Diet Should I Follow If I Have Crohn's Disease?


Quick Answer

There is no single diet that people with Crohn's disease should follow, according to the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America. Many people with the condition follow a diet free of dairy products because of lactose intolerance or a low-fiber diet to reduce abdominal pain, ease cramping and reduce diarrhea.

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What Diet Should I Follow If I Have Crohn's Disease?
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Full Answer

A low-fiber diet, also known as a low-residue diet, decreases the amount of residue left in the stool, states WebMD. Crohn's patients often follow this diet because of a stricture of the small intestine. Foods that are restricted on this diet include raw fruits, raw vegetables, corn hulls, nuts and seeds. Other foods that may trigger symptoms in those with Crohn's include anything that is deep fried, beans, legumes, lentils, spicy foods, whole grains, bran, red meat and pork.

Beverages that trigger Crohn's symptoms include alcohol, carbonated soft drinks, coffee, tea and anything containing caffeine.

Because certain foods trigger symptoms in different people, many nutritionists encourage Crohn's patients to try elimination diets to see which foods cause sensitivities, according to the CCFA. Nutritionists recommend keeping a food diary to make sure patients meet their nutritional needs and get enough protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals each day. Because of the risk of chronic diarrhea, it is also important for Crohn's patients to drink enough water throughout the day to avoid dehydration.

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