• Welcome to Crohn's Forum, a support group for people with all forms of IBD. While this community is not a substitute for doctor's advice and we cannot treat or diagnose, we find being able to communicate with others who have IBD is invaluable as we navigate our struggles and celebrate our successes. We invite you to join us.

You can beat it!

I was diagnosed with Crohn's by a colonoscopy approx 10 years ago. We realized a bad colitis/border ulcerative colitis diagnosis 20 years ago was probably incorrect as well. Anyway, after being put on steroids and anti-inflammatories and still not feeling better, I committed myself to getting rid of this. I read as much as I could about natural healing, benefits of massage, etc. and was on the path to recovery. I stopped the meds after 3-4 months, when I realized they were only band-aiding the problem and I was not getting better.

Approx. 8 years after my first colonoscopy, I was informed there was NOT sign of any Crohn's! I continue to try to follow a healthy lifestyle and pay attention to my stomach. I learned about food allergies and how they affect my stomach and cause inflammation and keep vigil about what I put in my body.

Stay focused and you can beat it too! There is hope.
Chrisnsteph: Initially there were MANY foods. However, to simplify, I removed dairy from my diet (although hard boiled eggs seem fine for me), grains, red meat, corn, gluten, breads, sugar, all beverages (w/exception of an occasional glass of red wine, herbal teas. I found green tea aggravates my stomach, so that has remained off the list. I found that corn actually swells my joints, besides its internal swelling of the bowels. Found a good eastern/western doc who has helped me in this journey. She has said that food is one of our greatest drugs and causes more side effects than many meds. We have to listen to our bodies and realize what goes in must be good to have a good effect. If we do not make any such change, we will not see any change. Hope this helps!
Thanks! I'm on an elimination diet (no dairy, gluten, corn, soy, egg, sugar) for 3 weeks, then I'll start adding foods back. I have been eating red meat on it, though (had a juicy steak for dinner last night). I'm on day 11 and hoping to see some improvement any day! I sure do miss my daily can of Red Bull (energy drink). I don't really miss the coffee very much. I drink a ton of water, but I've always done that.
I brew some herbal teas and then put in fridge, so I can either have hot teas or iced/room temp tea. I like to feel like I have choices for drinks. I have realized so many of those energy drinks have corn syrup or other additives that affect my stomach, so I avoid them like the plague. Good luck on the diet. You will begin to find things that you can substitute.


Yay Mickey! Great news!

I hope your diet keeps you healthy for a long time to come!

Thanks for sharing your story with us. :)
hi, mickey. i just joined the forum, and it's great to learn that there are others out there who are committed to treating their crohn's naturally, without conventional medications. i am one of those unfortunate (or fortunate depending upon how you see it!) souls for whom the myriad IBD medications have been of absolutely no help - and came to the hard realization that this disease cannot be (for me at least) effectively managed with a simple pill or injection. in hopes of finding a sustainable treatment, i've recently turned to diet modification (the SCD diet), vitamin & mineral supplementation, and yoga. after 11 months i have seen substantial improvement, and have hope that things will continue to improve, but remission still seems a long way off.

would you be willing to share more specifics about the "healthy lifestyle" that you've been following with such success? i especially have trouble dealing with the depression and anger that comes along with this disease, but am afraid i'm a bit too impatient for meditation! perhaps you have some other suggestions?
Heather: thanks for your comments. I think a big part of getting healthy is keeping your mind open and healthy and realizing these illness are only speedbumps in life; not a death sentence. We have to figure out our stress relieving activities (i.e., yoga (try Bikram), reading, sort of a date night with yourself to relieve stress). We can not stay in a depression mode or illnesses will progress. There has to be a balance in our life. When stress comes, we have to figure out what destresser works for us. Whether it is playing music, lighting candles and reading or taking a long bath, or working out; whatever it is, we need to move our mind to that, rather than get depressed. THAT will make a huge difference in healing. Otherwise, you are submitting to the disease and your mind will further trouble your illnesses.

I learned to get my mind strong. Whether it is reading scripture, reading motivational books; whatever works for you, find a focus and get out of a self-pity circle. Not meaning to be attacking by saying that, but depression is not a positive thought, so you need to realize that and move away from it like the plague.

I did not find any comfort in meds and when the doc told me that within a year I would probably have an operation and then a minimum of 2 thereafter, I was appalled. It was as though I was expected to accept that and let all the other immune diseases stack up on me. I began reading books on Crohns and even got further stressed. I then realized I was subconsciously accepting the medical field's sentence to illness, rather than trying to fight it. I eliminate the meds and began opening my mind to other ways to improve my overall health. My back happened to go out and I visited a highly recommended chinese masseuse and that began a journey of listening to my body and incorporating belly massage into my daily life. It made sense that bringing blood circulation to the area would help the body heal itself. Taking that concept a little further, I focused on what I was putting into my body and how processed so much food is...began making my own chicken soup, bean soups, etc...and only drinking herbal teas or water. WOW! What a change I felt! Anyway, it is an ongoing process, but I am in charge of my health. When you read about vaccines (NOT for me) and how foods have become so sugary and processed and how illnesses are increasing, the math is not so hard to realize there is a direct correlation...I can go on and on, but I think you get my point. Hope this helps!
I've been off meds (6mp and Lialda) for over a month now and off prednisone since January. I'd say I've been in remission since April. I take 8,000 iu Vit D3 drops, magnesium 400 mg a day, 50mg zinc a day and 1000 mg vit c. I mainly cook at home and and eat very little gluten. I cook veggie stir fry with lots of fresh ginger root and turmeric root and habanero peppers. My latest thing is making bone broths and then making soup with that. Beef broth is my favorite but a whole organic chicken with some veggies is very healthy. I cook bone marrow bones for about 24 hours to leach out the minerals in the bones and the gelatin. I try to eat bananas but don't eat them enough. I only eat fruit in the AM and not with other food. I'm a chocolate addict and eat chocolate several times a week. I cut out sodas and don't eat anything boxed or processed. I'm trying to eat less meat and 90% veggies except the broths but I eat a homemade burger once in awhile. My main thing is I have to be very conscious of everything I out in my body. So far so good. Oh and I make sure to get enough sleep every night and control my anger and anxiety.

I'm going to start a YouTube channel with my recipes that I use to make healthy tasty food that is healing. I will start a thread here when it's up.
You Can Beat It


I really agree with you about taking some responsibility over your Crohn's and tuning in on what your body is telling you. Not saying we can do this exclusively without good medical help, but I'm found that there are certain habits, including what foods and drinks I consume, sleep and how I handle stress is what really impacts whether I have a relapse in my Crohn's or not. Thanks for the advice.
Thanks for posting about depression and pity. I was in denial that I was sick or didn't want to accept it. Part of me still doesn't accept the official diagnosis but I have taken repaonsibility for my health and am conscious of stress, adequate sleep and nutrition as well as mental/spiritual component of becoming well. I couldn't have said it better. Thanks!
You Can Beat It

Yeah, you really can. And what you said is true. It's about taking responsibility for your life. Though Crohn's symptoms become less severe and sometimes do go into remission, you always have Crohn's. Moderating your life-style towards the condition is everything. I've found that health professionals can help through surgery/drugs, in terms of lessoning many of the symptoms, however, you ultimately call the shots 90% of the time. Finding ways to control stress, through spiritual activity, exercise, along with continued review of medicines, watching your diet and sleep are all huge.
hello i know this is an old thread but after just coming across this i have to ask how did the scar tissue dissappear (ur crohns), did it just naturally healed up and widen your bowel or surgery first?? i was just hospitalised and i too fail to accept that meds for life is the way to go.
I never had surgery. After a colonoscopy diagnosed the disease, I was put on meds and then after a few months of not truly feeling better, only a little less swollen because of meds, I opted for controlling what was put into my body and addressing environmental/food factors. I guess the body naturally healed, since the second colonoscopy showed no signs of Crohns and completely healthy colon. If you think about it, your outside body scars heal over time and better health, so I guess it makes sense. I realized I was causing inflammation in my internal organs due to the food choices. I found, through testing, that I have a myriad of food allergies/sensitivities and once I got that under control, inflammation reduced and then eliminated, no disease could continue. At the time my mother was also going through colon cancer and I was the primary caretaker to doc visits, etc... He was very insistent with her that her diet caused the disease. She did not change a thing in her diet. It was an "aha" moment for me and it all came together that if I can make changes, I would be able to expect changes. I addressed diet, exercise, stress, etc.. and was quite happy with the outcome of a clean bill of health. Now, I am sure if I returned to the diet of sugars, bakery goods, breads, grains, etc., that I am sensitive to, it would maintain an inflamed state in my intestines and it would probably progress to Crohns or cancer. So, I keep my head on straight and stay on the narrow path of a cleaner diet as best as possible. Bikram Yoga made a world of difference, as well as massage, clean diet and change in releasing emotions; rather than keeping the thoughts inside. Hope this babbling helps!
LukeE: I am not saying that eliminating docs is the way to go, but for me I questioned docs and sought Western/Eastern doc advice and blended the two. I still go for annual doc visits with reg doc and he is amazed at my good health, so I know I am doing something right. I am within my acceptable weight range and certainly could exercise more, but I do stay active.
Mickey: truely inspirational, i agree to keep going t specialist regualrly for check ups but i also love keeping active (gym, kick boxing, swimming etc) and now after losing 10kgs (gym weight-muscle) it has hit me pretty hard and confronting at that. Im using the meds to help control and get the flare down but want to change my diet to be able to be med free and still be able to have active lifestyle and have yummy food. Once better i will be looking at cutting ot breads and grains, only having hi-lo milk, and hoping my mind is strong enough to cut out fast food entirely lol. But to cook free range food (chicken and eggs) , no red meats and to stick to gluten free. Im hoping my plan is on the right track to achieving this/to achieving the same as yourself. Also trying to find the correct technique for a gently stomach massage.

Again thank you , truley uplifting and raised my hopes up after a daunting eye opening hospital experience.
LukeE, if you have not seen my previous posts on belly massage, look down at stomach and look at center of navel. Use that as center of circles. Begin with flat palm on your right side (ascending colon) and go up above navel and go toward left (descending colon) and down around to right side. If you are having deep cramping, I have to dig in and see if pushing harder will stop the cramping; which it commonly does. If bad pain, I will sometimes go lighter and spend longer time on it. However, when I first began doing it, the Eastern doc told me to do it at least five minutes each morning and before bed, as well as as often as possible during the day. I found myself doing it in the car, watching tv, etc...amazingly relaxing once my belly got better. You can feel your stomach rock hard and then by the time you are done it is as soft as jelly. Bikram Yoga also has a pose (Wind Removing Pose) that you can google and do. I combine both in my daily activities. This is getting the blood circulating which will help your body heal (per Eastern doc). Have to say, this has truly made a difference for me.
Hi Mickey, I'm new to this forum and I had my first colonoscopy in the beginning of december as they suspected Crohns because they couldn't figure anything else out.. all my blood work was normal but the only thing was my inflammation marker was a bit higher than usual but not as high as most people with crohns so we did a colonoscopy anyways...after having it done they said they found very small amount of inflammation with the "clinical suspicion of Crohns" with a question mark at the end...

anyways, I went and saw a Naturopath and got my food intolerance tests done and found out I was intolerant to all dairy including eggs, red meat, gluten and a bit of corn... I cut it out of my diet and I have no problems now, they than prescribed me budesonide to take for 2 months to help... but even taking this, i cheated on my food diet one day and ate pizza and i got extremely sick so this makes me feel like maybe it's not crohns and maybe it is food allergies because i get sick any time i eat any of those foods even though I'm on medication...my GI seems stuck in her ways where as the Naturopath said it could be just the food as they cause they same sort of problems.. any advice on what anyone thinks would be great...
My GI is stuck in his ways. Says food has nothing to do with my digestive issues. He pretty much doesn't work for me anymore. I only have problems when I don't get enough sleep, water, eat processed foods etc.
Taylor 27: please think about what you said. You cheated on the diet and got extremely sick. Based on my experience, I think my Crohns came as a result of my constant inflammation (which was caused by eating the wrong foods). So when I addressed the diet, the stomach inflammation went down and eventually helped me heal from Crohns.

You have to be committed to keeping on a diet that stays away from your food sensitivities, junk food, pop, etc., for a LONG time. That is the only way your inflammation will go down. You are way past inflammation and into a disease. You need to reverse the disease by eliminating the cause of inflammation. There are plenty of good foods you can eat that will not cause you trouble, but you have to figure out what they are and stick to it.

Sort of like when a smoker say "I can't quit". That is not true. A smoker who WANTS to quit will be able to do so. While they know they should not do it and it will cause health issues, they still smoke. Same with dieters. We all know what we should do, but give in and do it anyway; even if it adversely affects our health.

We have to reach down and take control of our health and realize that if we do not do so today, then down the line our health will be getting worse and we will add on more disease and other issues. When you reach for the pizza, imagine the pain and perhaps that will help you stay away from it? Figure out your triggers and then a remedy so you do not fall back into harmful ways.

It is an amazing feeling to be able to plan a day and know I can accomplish something, without having to plan around bathroom runs, etc., (no pun intended).

Hope this helps!
Hi, I was only diagnosed this week and this is all very new to me and i am hoping that i can strike a balance between medication and diet to live a better life! I know that cheese and some dairy causes problems and brown rice too. I will do a chart of what causes a reaction and hope that i learn from all your experiences too. Thanks
Hi Ray6007. Welcome to the forum. There is the diet and fitness forum you may want to visit. Everybody is different about food that triggers symptoms. It a great idea to make a chart of everything you eat and see what makes you sick. Some of the people in this forum don't have problems with any kind of food. If you like you can share your story with us or ask any questions.