Specialized Digestive
Care for Your Child

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Call: (855) 638-3780
33 Overlook Road, Suite 208
Summit, NJ

 

 

There are two serious chronic inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract. Both are classified under the umbrella of "Inflammatory Bowel Diseases" (IBD).  One is called Crohn's Disease (CD), and the other, Ulcerative Colitis (UC).  Both may cause symptoms ranging from mild, where it may take months or even years before feeling the need to ask for professional medical advice, to severe, where initial presentation requires immediate hospitalization.The severity of the later (chronic) course may or may not correlate with the severity of an initial presentation.  In general there are three recognized groups of IBD patients: 1) those who have a severe disease, often with an involvement of an extensive segment of the bowel,  2) those who have a mild disease, and 3) those who have an intermediate disease course. At times an aggressive management, using an advanced "biological" and immunosuppressive therapy is necessary, and ( though rarely in children) surgery may be a last resort.

Any child who has any of the following symptoms: chronic episodes of abdominal pain, blood in the stool, chronic diarrhea, weight loss or inadequate weight gain, or delay of sexual development, must be seen by a pediatric gastroenterologist as soon as possible.

Below is also a helpful website:

http://www.gastrokids.org/content/7/en/IBD

www.pedsibd.org

nutritional aspects of IBD

       There are some clinical situations, when the diet (e.g. elemental formula, tube feeding) may become an essential. sometimes the only, or a primary way of the therapy.  Most of specialists are agree (I want to be optimistic), that the diet, as well as the life style in general, must be addressed in each case.

Food to be encouraged:  Whole food (an organic in many instances is important too), free of a processed and "junk" food.  It is best to prepare food yourself, and avoid fast food as much as possible.

        Focus on high protein sources, such as organic chicken and turkey, fish, legumes, and soy.  Homemade soups, using variety of vegetables, and high quality protein sources are particularly helpful during a flare-up.

        Drink vegetable juices, particularly from Cabbage.  Stay well hydrated.  Organic yogurt or kefir should be a part of a daily meal (especially , breakfast).

Food to be avoided:  All (especially packaged) products with refined carbohydrates, white flowers, white rice.  Brown and white sugars.  Food high in saturated, hydrogenated, and partially hydrogenated fat.  Greasy food of all types.  During flare-up stay on low fiber diet.  Stay away from fruit juices, caffeine, carbonated drinks, and spicy food (irritating effect on the intestinal mucosa).

Blood levels of vitamins (B12 in Crohn's, Vit. D, Folic Acid), Iron, some microelements should be checked regularly, and a daily dose of a potent multivitamins with Iron is usually a rule.

interesting to know....

        There are some preliminary studies, showing an anti-inflammatory effect of Flankicense (Boswellia) as 1,200-1,500 mg of standardized extract 2-3 times a day. 

        Probiotics (VSL#3) appears to be beneficial for patients with Ulcerative Colitis, but so far, there is no prove of their benefit in cases of Crohn's.  

       There some published studies (adult population with Crohn's), wich show a benefit of elemination of both dairy products and wheat.