My "Unhealthy" Diet with UC
Last updated: June 2023
I just made myself a smoothie in a Nutribullet with ingredients I haven’t put into my body in over a decade (gosh, I am old!). This not only makes me feel hopeful for the future but it also makes me think about all my body has been through because of inflammatory bowel disease.
Eating unhealthy foods with ulcerative colitis
I never would have thought that being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis at the age of 13 would make me lean towards unhealthy foods. If anything, I would have expected my diet to become more fine-tuned with rich, wholesome fruits, vegetables, nuts, etc. Even though I was a competitive swimmer and ate pretty healthy prior to diagnosis, I still could have eaten healthier.
That is, at first, what I thought would happen to me because of my disease.
Natural methods to help heal UC
My parents were always very health-conscious and tried (and succeeded) to pass that along to my younger brother and me. Although we realized the seriousness of ulcerative colitis, given our background, my family and I wanted to try every natural way of helping me to heal (alongside Western medicine). My parents and I started reading some things on the internet about special diets, supplements, and vitamins I should be consuming.
I have been a vegetarian since the age of nine so I am someone who actually enjoys healthy foods. I loved ordering salads at restaurants and being able to munch on raw veggies.
Healthy foods for me lead to a blockage or an ostomy leak
I had no idea I would be at a point in my life where I would either have to skip the fruits, vegetables, salads, and other healthy foods or risk a blockage and/or ostomy leak. This came from years and years of trial and error.
But seriously! I never could have dreamt that I would be bogged down with these types of worries. I always assumed I would be able to eat healthy if I chose and eat garbage if the mood struck.
Finding ways to get healthy food without a negative impact on my body
Although I have accepted my food restrictions, I am also hopeful that I actually figured out a way to get all of this healthy food my body and mind have been craving for so many years into my system without it having a negative impact on my digestive tract OR wreaking havoc on my mind. As most of us know, this disease and the impact it has on the foods we eat can put a damper on your mental health.
I know it took a long time but I am trying to remember that even though certain struggles may seem impossible to overcome at times, there are always new products to be made and experimented with.
What type of colitis are you living with?
Loneliness with ulcerative colitis
One of the worst parts of this disease is the loneliness. Never give up hope and never forget you aren't alone with the many, many "side problems" (what I always referred to these types of things in my mind) that can go alongside life with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.
I felt alone for 12 years and it was one of the worst parts of this disease. So many people understand how hard this aspect of life is with inflammatory bowel disease.
Everyone is different when it comes to diet and IBD
Of course, there are many people who suffer from IBD eating all of the things I mentioned above with absolutely no issues and that is flat-out amazing! I just wanted to share my experience in case there were others out there who struggled with not being able to eat as healthy as you would had Crohn's or ulcerative colitis never entered your life.
What has been the most helpful for managing IBD symptoms?