Diagnosed, medicated, and feeling fine
When I was 19, I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. I was prescribed a daily cocktail of anti-depressants (my doctor felt stress made the disease worse) and other medicines to try to combat the disease. Suddenly, I went from being a normal, healthy teenager to taking 20 pills a day. At first–besides the constant fatigue and a scary low weight of 85 pounds–I felt fine. So I continued to live my usual college lifestyle, living off of a combination of junk food, energy drinks, and coffee. (After all, didn’t I need to gain weight?) But these habits took a toll on me. Every year I felt worse.
Symptoms worsened, even surgery didn’t work
Soon, certain foods made me so sick, I couldn’t go to work. I could no longer keep up with my friends, and sometimes would sleep for over 12 hours if nobody woke me up. I wasn’t enjoying my life and had no idea what was making me feel so bad. By now, I had stopped taking pills that gave no relief and instead, started on a black label drug that had me hospitalized on more than one occasion. The pain was so drastic that I even had surgery to get a section of my intestine removed. Everything seemed to help temporarily, but why was I still getting worse?
I decided to listen to my body
I finally decided to change my attitude. Instead of a burden, Crohn’s could be a blessing in disguise. This condition was forcing me to be as healthy as possible to maintain a normal level of energy and live a full life! While others could eat whatever they wanted without consequences, my body communicated with me immediately if it wasn’t happy with how I was treating it. For the first time, I decided to listen to my body and give it what it needed.
Changed my food, changed everything
I began eating as naturally as I could, focusing on foods with anti-inflammatory effects. The funny thing is, I suddenly felt better! After an entire year eating this way, I went back to the doctor that I used to visit every month. He tested my blood and was shocked to see that, for the first time since I became his patient, I had zero inflammation in my body. My Crohn’s was in complete remission, and my intestine looked just like any normal, healthy intestine.
My ultimate advice
I know that food alone is not a cure, and my Crohn’s can come back at any time, but I do believe that my new diet gave my immune system the boost it needed. If there is any advice I could give to those going through a similar situation, it would be two-fold: do your research and listen to your body. It may just be telling you what it needs to heal.
Note: PLEASE consult with your doctor before making any changes to your diet or medications. The material on this site is provided for educational purposes only, and is not to be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.