Going vegan to pacify Crohn's disease
Jenny Quiroz has Crohn's disease and although it limited what she could do, and she suffered a lot with it before; she has dramatically pacified it. Guess how she did it? That's right! Through making changes in her diet!
She's been kind enough to share her story with us. After you've read this post, I hope you feel as inspired and full of hope as I do now.
What kind of food and drink did you consume before going vegan?
I grew up consuming the standard American diet. Lots of processed foods such as boxed dinners, cereals, white refined bread, meat, and lots of dairy. I started to cut back on meat to about once a week, probably through the last few months of 2012 up to June of 2013 when I decided to try a "banana island". Which is when you consume only bananas for a short period of time to heal your body.
Why did you shift to a plant-based diet?
I started to notice after cutting back on meat and dairy that I felt my best on the days that I had none. I started to have less flare ups from Crohn's disease.
What is Crohns disease?
Crohn's disease is an auto immune disease. It causes chronic diarrhea, cramps, bloating, fatigue, anaemia, weight loss, and can cause a person to need immune suppressing medications, and/or surgery to remove their intestines/colon.
How did shifting to a vegan diet help you reduce the affects of Crohn's disease?
After doing a smoothie cleanse, because I had a hard time sticking to just bananas; I had very few flare ups. I changed to a vegetarian diet at first, but I also stopped eating dairy so frequently. I noticed that when I did eat it, I would have a flare up. After watching a lot of health documentaries and seeing how eating meat and dairy effects not only the lives of animals but our environment, I decided to try harder to eat all plant based or "vegan".
What changed and what remained the same?
What has remained the same is that I still have to know where a restroom is no matter where I am. I can't wait long if I have to go. I will still get sick if I eat oily vegan junk foods (high fat foods).
What has changed is that I now drink miralax twice a day, to help move things along, since my bowel size did become restricted due to Crohn's. However, I don't need to take Imodium AD, like ever. I used to practically live off that stuff to stop diarrhoea, and a lot of times it wouldn't even help. I only have flare ups rarely now. By rarely, I mean once or twice a month and when it happens, it doesn't last as long as it used to. So when I eat something that doesn't suit, I may need 2-3 restroom breaks, until my body has cleared it out, but it doesn't keep flaring after that.
How soon after making the shift, did you see a positive difference?
I made the change pretty slowly at first, but I would have to say after doing the smoothie cleanse in June of 2013, I felt amazing. ( I did the cleanse for the whole month.) My digestion felt perfect, no bloating, no pain, and most importantly no diarrhoea.
What kind of food and drink do you consume now?
I try to consume a high raw, high carbohydrate, low fat, low sodium, plant based diet. Sometimes I do eat some vegan junk food, hence the flares once or twice a month. High fat foods do not seem to work well with Crohn's disease. Neither do animal products, such as, meat and dairy.
Hear Jenny's story about how making a shift in diet helped her control Crohn's disease
For 26 years, Joe Cox suffered from crippling Crohn's disease and was taking 20 pills a day to ease the pain. The economics teacher from South Croydon was following a low-fibre diet on a doctor's advice. But when this failed to ease the symptoms, the Avondale Road resident took drastic action and decide to cut meat out of his diet. Two years ago, the 45-year-old joined Britain's 600,000-strong band of vegans, after a friend suggested the change could improve his health. Since then, Joe hasn't looked back and is now a strong advocate of the vegan way. He told the Advertiser: "It's literally as though I don't have Crohn's disease now. "What it has done for my life is amazing.
- Joe Cox