Guest post, meal plan, and photos by Natalie Holladay
I didn’t expect the year 2016 to start out with a diagnosis of IBD for my son. A family history of Celiac Disease left me almost hopefully anticipating to hear something familiar as the verdict. I desperately wanted an accurate diagnosis so that we could start working to heal his damage and reduce his symptoms. I knew a few people with Crohn’s Disease, but knew very little about IBD, symptoms, management or prognosis. I’m not sure I had ever heard of – or paid attention if I had – anyone I knew with Ulcerative Colitis.
SCD Families is only open to parents of children and teens with IBD. The goal of this group is to share information, tips and experiences relevant to parents maintaining or wishing to learn about using the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SDC) as nutritional therapy to manage IBD.
Most people respond well to SCD as it is presented on BTVC. Sometimes, a more restricted version of the diet is needed to help the body heal. In our parent support group we have seen that extra-sensitive IBD kids respond well to a more restricted form of SCD when first starting the diet, and over time as they heal, they gradually expand their diet and are able to enjoy the full scale of SCD foods.
Morana Bodmer (PhD) is a researcher by nature, a scientist by training, and the mother of three children. When her son Noah was diagnosed with Crohn’s, she and her husband, a medical doctor, decided to use SCD as a dietary therapy.
Iron deficiency is a common problem for many IBD patients,who have a hard time absorbing and storing iron. However, iron supplements are not allowed when practicing SCD as a diet therapy, since iron in a supplement form is harsh on a sensitive gut. Research also suggests that iron supplements can alter the bacterial balance in the gut of people with IBD
When adhering to the Specific Carbohydrates Diet, there are several alternatives to the use of iron supplements. While mentoring SCD families I have seen people that managed to restore their iron levels shortly after starting SCD. As their gut was healing their absorption of iron from foods sources was sufficient to normalize lab results of iron levels. At the same time, some other people struggle to restore iron levels even while on SCD, and must try different methods to supplement their iron until they find a good fit that their body absorbs well. Listed below are various methods that are in compliance, or minimally interfere with SCD.