Ulcerative Colitis? Do This

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 04/22/2024

Living ulcerative colitis can be extremely difficult and painful. Understanding this problem is the first step to managing it.

Learn about ulcerative colitis (UC), common symptoms, and what you can do to manage this issue.

Understanding Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation and ulcers in your digestive tract. It affects the innermost lining of your large intestine (colon) and rectum.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), ulcerative colitis affects as many as 907,000 Americans.

This chronic condition varies significantly from person to person, with symptoms ranging from mild discomfort to severe pain. Some people may experience periods of remission with no symptoms, but flare-ups often follow these periods.

A study published in GUT Journal found that up to one-third of patients will need surgery because medication does not effectively control their illness.

Limitations of Conventional Treatments for Ulcerative Colitis

Conventional treatments for ulcerative colitis, such as surgery and steroids, can be limited in effectiveness. Steroid treatment can be associated with some unpleasant side effects, like weakening of bones or a greater risk for infection.

Surgery, too, isn't a silver bullet. It often results in changes in body image and lifestyle adjustments due to the creation of an ostomy - that's where waste exits your body into a pouch you wear on your abdomen.

About 25% of people with ulcerative colitis will need surgery at some point, according to Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation.

The Limiting Side Effects Of Steroids And Other Medication

Prolonged use of medication can also result in other problems such as kidney damage or increased risk of heart disease.

The limitations don’t just stop there; these medications can also lead to mental health issues like depression and anxiety disorders.

Intermittent fasting concept

The Role of Fasting in Managing Ulcerative Colitis

While it may seem counterintuitive at first glance, fasting can be a potent tool for those battling ulcerative colitis. But how does this help with ulcerative colitis?

When you fast, your body switches gears from digestion to repair and detoxification. This process includes reducing inflammation, the key driver behind symptoms of ulcerative colitis.

How Fasting Increases Microbiome Diversity

Billions of essential bacteria, both good and bad, populate your gut for your well-being. When there's an imbalance leaning towards more harmful ones (a condition known as dysbiosis), conditions like ulcerative colitis flare up.

Fasting allows beneficial microbes to thrive, restoring balance within the microbiome. This diversity significantly reduces inflammation and improves gut health - two essential aspects when managing UC.

Essential Nutrients for Ulcerative Colitis Management

Fighting ulcerative colitis can feel like an uphill battle, but specific vitamins and minerals play crucial roles in managing this condition.

The Anti-Inflammatory Power of Vitamin D

Vitamin D is crucial for bone health and has strong anti-inflammatory properties. When inflammation hits your gut lining, vitamin D becomes an immune modulator to help calm things down.

A study found that patients with higher vitamin D levels showed fewer symptoms and flare-ups.

Sunshine is one way to get more vitamin D, but you might need supplements if you're deficient. Always speak to your physician before initiating any fresh supplement plan.

Preventing Ulcers with Zinc

Zinc isn’t only good for boosting immunity; it is critical when dealing with ulcerative colitis. One common symptom of this disease is ulcers in the colon; zinc helps to protect against these painful sores.

Research suggests people suffering from ulcerative colitis often have lower levels of zinc—so making sure you’re getting enough could be vital to managing your symptoms effectively.

Natural Remedies for Ulcerative Colitis

When struggling with ulcerative colitis, natural remedies can provide a surprising amount of respite. While not substitutes for medical treatment, they help manage symptoms and aid gut healing.

The Healing Properties of Cabbage Juice

You might turn up your nose at the thought of cabbage juice, but its benefits are no laughing matter. Cabbage juice is a potent anti-inflammatory, known to heal ulcers and alleviate inflammation in the colon.

Wheatgrass Juice Powder and Apple Cider Vinegar for Gut Health

Gut health is crucial when managing ulcerative colitis, so why not give a shot of wheatgrass juice powder or apple cider vinegar? They have the potential to heal the inner lining of your gut, making them worth considering on your journey towards better health.

Ketogenic food

Keto and Ulcerative Colitis

Keto and ulcerative colitis (UC) is a topic of interest for individuals seeking dietary strategies to manage this inflammatory bowel disease. The ketogenic diet, characterized by its high-fat and low-carb nature, may have potential benefits for some UC patients.

Reducing carbohydrates can help decrease inflammation and potentially alleviate some UC symptoms. Probiotics on keto can play a complementary role in managing UC.

Probiotics support a balanced gut microbiome, which is crucial for individuals with UC. A healthy gut flora can help regulate the immune system, reduce inflammation, and improve overall digestive function.

Incorporating probiotics while on a keto diet may enhance the potential benefits of both approaches in managing UC.

However, individuals with UC need to consult with a healthcare provider or gastroenterologist before making significant dietary changes, such as starting a keto diet or taking probiotics. They can provide personalized guidance and ensure these approaches align with your medical condition and treatment plan.

Conclusion

Living with ulcerative colitis can be incredibly challenging and painful, but understanding this condition is the first step towards effectively managing it.

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease that affects millions of Americans, with symptoms ranging from mild discomfort to severe pain and requiring surgery for some patients when conventional treatments prove ineffective.

While conventional medications like steroids can have limiting side effects, alternative approaches such as fasting, supplementation with essential nutrients like vitamin D and zinc, and natural remedies like cabbage juice and wheatgrass juice powder may offer relief and support gut healing.

Additionally, dietary strategies like the ketogenic diet, when combined with probiotics, can potentially help manage symptoms and improve overall digestive health in individuals with ulcerative colitis.

With a comprehensive understanding of ulcerative colitis and a personalized approach to management, you can work towards better health and improved quality of life.

Supporting Data

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1643665/

https://vitamindwiki.com/Ulcerative+colitis+treated+by+injection+of+300%2C000+IU+of+vitamin+D+%E2%80%93+RCT+July+2016

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2953593/

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