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Not All Triggers Are Created Equal.

Not All Triggers Are Created Equal

As you all well know, different triggers set my Crohn’s off into a tizzy. What might make my Crohn’s act up might be completely different then yours. When I talk to people who have Crohn’s, I am able to find differences in what sparks us. So what triggers my Crohn’s to act up? I shall tell you:


Like most Crohn’s patients, when I am stressed out, I am running to the bathroom. Being a teacher, students can be a handful. When their behaviors are out of line, or my lessons aren’t going as planned, I get stressed. As a result, I find myself making my way towards the lavatory during my prep periods. What do I do to relieve stress? I often run, or read. Speaking time with loved ones and family also help to diffuse my stress levels.

Red Sauce:

This is one type of food I stay away from. Anything that has tomatoes in it will have me in the bathroom for the evening. So how do I get pass this challenge. I just stay away from it! If I want pizza, I order a white pie with no sauce.

The Weather:

Believe it or not, if it is raining outside, I have a bad day. I heard about it with people with arthritis, and other inflammatory diseases, but not with Crohn’s. But when I started to notice a pattern; every time it rained, I couldn’t stop running the restroom. I talked to other Crohn’s patients, and they experience the same thing. Do you have a worst day when it rains?

The thought of- Just the thought of long car rides, drive me crazy. I guess you can put the word “Anxious” in this category. When I get anxious about something, my Crohn’s really starts to act up.


You know how it goes. We all eat too much during the holidays. If it’s Thanksgiving, or the Christmas season, I find myself falling to this category. I too eat too much, and yes I pay the price.

So you’re probably thinking, well Paul, why don’t you just adjust? You are probably right. I should stop being anxious, and eat less during the holidays. But as we all know, there is no rhyme or reason when it comes to why there are “good” and “bad” days for Crohn’s patients. There is no answer why I use the restroom, then two minutes later I’m back in the bathroom again. I can’t be perfect when it comes to changing my life for this disease. I think doing all these changes will make me even more anxious. Making me more anxious would only cause more issues.

Are there other triggers that pertain to my Crohn’s? Yep. I could list a bunch more. Some of you reading this could said, “Yes, I have the same symptoms.” Others say, “I don’t have the same triggers, but here are mine…” I am very interested to hear about your triggers. Remember, its ok to “live your life” while having Crohn’s. Remember, you only live once…

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Paul Richman author
    2 years ago

    Interesting Victoria. I would love to hear more!

  • Victoria
    2 years ago

    Anything pickled or fermented. Sauerkraut put me in the hospital for three days

  • Suevee
    2 years ago

    Exactly why I’m on 3 different anxiety meds. I have crohns, Sibo and a hiatal hernia. I don’t know what’s causing what! Horrible trapped gas in my upper stomach.

  • rjbender
    2 years ago

    My triggers are stress, tomatoes and red sauce, seeds and nuts, and milk or dairy products. Bad weather like rain, thunderstorms, and major weather changes make me feel worse as well… interesting how that works!

  • SusanHU
    2 years ago

    Very interesting @rjbender! How did you go about tracking your triggers so you could figure them out?

    – Susan ( Team Member)

  • rjbender
    2 years ago

    Susan, 35+ years of noticing what bothered me the worst. It was trial and error and paying attention to patterns. I also know when I eat something that is a trigger that I will likely pay greatly for it later…

  • Tvol65
    2 years ago

    As a Crohn’s patient I subsequently found that in addition to the “gut issues”, I have extra-intestinal inflammatory issues that also react to many of the same things listed. Weather, high stress, sugar, acidic foods, ALL of the artificially sweeteners, a high fiber diet, anything binding around my waist, and very greasy foods are some of the things I try to avoid.

    It isn’t easy! Even if I do my best, and stay clear of all of these, it still isn’t a guarantee that I won’t have a flare, or an issue with another inflammatory problem elsewhere in my body on a given day. This is my new normal. My wife and I just accept that, and we keep doing whatever, and going wherever we want. It’s a choice to live, or just exist!

  • rjbender
    2 years ago

    I absolutely agree!!!

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