Something that I have struggled with from the beginning of my diagnosis is food, and determining what aggrevates my stomach. For me this has been immensely difficult because as they tell you Crohns is different, especially with food for each individual diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Although there are sites which tell you general information, which outline common food that people struggle with, I’ve found it very difficult to pinpoint recipes that are safe but also easy to make.
A list of the common food we are told to stay away from include;
- Popcorn (which I love)
- Some raw veg and fruit, especially those with pips in
- Oil/fatty foods
- Red meat
- Spicy food
Even though they give you a broad list, and I mean broad as the mention many more and it seems like there isn’t any food left you can eat, there still isn’t enough information to help those struggling with this. For me I’ve found so much food that I can’t eat, and I can’t go for the easy meals anymore where I use a jar sauce as my stomach balloons and my body doesn’t like it. I’ve definitely learnt that I can cook things from scratch and it’s easy but I’m still going through trial and error with what I can eat. Through my trial and error I’ve realised that gluten seems to be a problem. With this comes another problem of having to buy EXPENSIVE gluten free products. The best place we have found for gluten free products is Morrisons, but if your lucky enough and get there in time aldi seem to be the cheapest. A friend of mine mentioned for me to sign up for product testing from the gluten free companies to try them but at the same time you get free food, I haven’t yet done this but I will definitely do this.
I love milk, I used to always have it before I went to bed at night, with cereal and for the most wonderful thing white hot chocolates. Even though milk is good for the acid reflux I always get, my tummy wasn’t happy with this. I know you will all think well there’s an easy substitute for this, soya milk or something similar, but to me it didn’t taste that nice so I just didn’t have it anymore. That was until we had done a little research and found a product called B2 milk, which has the lactose properties which most lactose intolerant people react to removed. I’ve now had it a few times and it’s brilliant, it tastes nice and I don’t react (well I don’t think I do).
As I said earlier I couldn’t have jar sauces anymore, which meant I was cooking everything from scratch. Onions for me are a big part of most my recipes, but they create havoc for me if they are too raw, I have found if they are cooked down enough I can still have them, the same for most vegetables. As long as the vegetables are soft they are okay. Fruit on the other hand increase the acid in my stomach, which yet again leaves me uncomfortable, I haven’t found a way around this yet, as I love fruit.
I have done a lot of trial and error, a fellow Crohns sufferer advised me to start from scratch; chicken, veg and chips/potatoes. So I did for a while and sometimes I would have sausages, but the sausages never agreed, until I found gluten free ones, which were amazing! But this soon became very boring, so I started making stir frys with gluten free soy sauce, which is now my standard meal I fall back to. My major struggle now is knowing what I can have for snacks, I am still working out what food I can have but I will keep you updated on recipes I have found that work for me personally.
I hope this helps anyone struggling with food, but I shall out some recipes up soon, especially as I know this is the hardest part for me!