23 yo male, living with bowel problems my whole life, diagnosed with Ulcerative colitis 8 years ago. My UC has been kept fairly under control the whole time with just Lialda, but recently the UC has started to take control. I am terrified of going down the slippery slope that is prednisone and remicade, so I’m trying to do this the natural way with the SCD.
Bloody bowel movements (no D, just bloody) and a frequent urge to go.
SCD Diet Update After 5 Months:
I wrote here about 3 months ago about my adventures with the SCD and how I was improving but still seeing some symptoms. I wanted to give an update on how I am doing in order to give people considering the Specific Carbohydrate Diet more ideas about whether or not they want to try this diet.
Prior to starting SCD, my UC symptoms were probably better than most people’s. If I went somewhere and needed a bathroom, I was always able to hold it, and I never had any accidents. My BMs were formed about 50% of the time, and the other 50% being a bloody mess. I was going 5-6 times a day, but the number was rising. When I was first diagnosed, I was going 2-3 times/day, and I felt myself getting worse. I started SCD after crying myself to sleep for like a week straight, after realizing that I was going to feel like this every day. For the rest of my life.
Inspired by all of the success stories online, I started SCD 5 months ago, hoping to heal myself. I thought to myself that my UC was not as bad as everyone else’s, so I’ll probably heal quicker. Well, that didn’t happen. I am still nowhere near where I want to be. In the almost 5 months I’ve been on the diet, a lot has changed, but also a lot has stayed the same. UC is still in control of my life, and I still worry whether or not there will be a bathroom whenever I go somewhere. However, there are some definite improvements: I do not have abdominal pain in the morning anymore. I used to wake up with the worst abdominal pain that would only go away if I went to the bathroom. Now, that pain is gone. Also, about 90% of my BMs are formed now. There is still significant blood, but there is definitely less than 5 months ago. I am only using the bathroom about 2-3 times a day, and I have even had a few days when I only went once!
My typical day is usually waking up around 7am, with a breakfast of some dry curd cottage cheese and homemade yogurt with honey and homemade jam. My first BM is usually between lunch time and 4pm (which is pretty awesome — 5 months ago I would have gone two or three times by then). Lunch is usually some broiled ground beef with avocado, and dinner is some type of fish with squash or more beef patties. I will often use the bathroom after dinner, and then again before bed (and a lot of the time I will only go before bed). I usually snack on some bananas and almond flour muffins. Also, Adam is right, and that SCD smoothie is like the best thing in the whole world. Seriously. I have like 3 a day. It is a very bland diet, and have lost close to 30 pounds in the last 5 months because I don’t eat very much. I was pretty skinny before, so now I look… not so great.
So… what are my symptoms after 5 months? The way I described it in the above paragraph you would think everything was perfect. But it’s not. When I wake up in the morning, I still have to use the bathroom. It’s just not a strong enough urge that I end up actually going. Furthermore, while my BMs are formed, I frequently feel the urge to go very soon afterwards (maybe an hour or so). Again, this urge is not strong enough for me to go, but just enough that I can’t focus on much else.
I know I am lucky for my UC to be as mild as it is. I know from reading this website that a lot of people are much worse off than I am. Yet I am still terrified of my condition. I know UC tends to come back after many years, just when you think you are done with it, and it usually comes back much worse. I am worried that I am only feeling better because I am eating less, not because of what I am eating. I have promised myself to stay on this diet for at least 2 years. I am not a quitter, and I know that 5 months is not enough. The improvements I have seen have convinced me to keep going, and hopefully things will continue to get better.
Where I’d like to be in 1 year:
If not Ulcerative Colitis free, at least more convinced that the SCD is getting me there. I want to be certain that the diet is working, and that I am not simply feeling better because I am eating less.
written by KK-SCD’er
submitted in the colitis venting area