Ulcerative colitis (UC), similar to Crohn’s disease, is a type of irritable bowel disease (IBD). This chronic illness causes ulcers and inflammation in the colon’s lining. If you have UC, you may experience diarrhea, fatigue, nausea, abdominal pain, and weight loss. Foods such as avocados, eggs, refined grains, and salmon may help alleviate colitis symptoms. Medical practitioners also advise UC patients to avoid the following foods because they may trigger ulcerative colitis:
Drinking caffeine or coffee will increase your blood pressure and heart rate because these products are stimulants. This can irritate your digestive tract, leading to abdominal pain and gut inflammation. Although a few studies show the effect of caffeine on ulcerative colitis, it has been proven that coffee is unsuitable for people with UC. For example, in a survey on the impact of coffee involving 442 people, 22% reported that their ulcerative symptoms worsened when they took caffeine.
This is a common allergen for people with ulcerative colitis as it can trigger several reactions. Many individuals suffering from UC have reported increased abdominal issues after consuming sweetcorn. This is because sweetcorn contains gluten, which is not always good for people with intestinal problems. Starchy foods containing gluten always cause abdominal problems, such as constipation, diarrhea, cramping, and inflammation. This is because it encourages the multiplication of bad bacteria in your gut, which, in turn, slows your digestion and affects your large intestine. Other foods that contain gluten may include wheat, barley, and rye.
Also, avoid any foods made from milk if you have ulcerative colitis to avoid abdominal discomfort. These products have lactose, which can trigger diarrhea. This usually occurs because the body cannot convert lactose into glucose and galactose. When you don’t have enough lactase, an enzyme that helps to digest lactose in your gut, it ferments in your digestive system and causes gas and bloating. This fermentation can lead to diarrhea, cramping, and abdominal pain in people with ulcerative colitis. Besides, high fats may trigger UC, leading to severe inflammation in your large intestine.
4. Carbonated beverages
Patients with ulcerative colitis are also advised to avoid carbonated drinks like sodas and beer. This is because they are notorious for causing intestinal gas and even bloating. These beverages also contain a lot of sugar, which can cause diarrhea, abdominal pain, and constipation. Instead of sodas, drink plenty of plain water throughout the day to feel better. Water will help with digestion and promote better sleep.
5. Butter or margarine
People with ulcerative colitis should avoid using margarine or butter because it will worsen their symptoms. Butter is filled with saturated fats, which can easily contribute to gut problems and inflammation. Margarine is also high in trans fats, which accelerates inflammation. Fats are usually hard for the digestive system to break down, meaning that they can cause cancer, heart problems, and other health conditions.
If you have ulcerative colitis, you must choose your foods wisely to prevent abdominal complications. First, you should identify foods suitable for UC and eliminate the trigger foods to make your work easier. Above are some of the foods to avoid if you have ulcerative colitis. Lastly, seek medical help to get the best medication for your condition.