Tucker Sweeney’s New Book and His Success Treating Ulcerative Colitis

My journey with ulcerative colitis (UC) started when I was in my early twenties and cut into my life, separating me from the people and places I used to love.

Before UC I spent the majority of my time hiking, rock climbing, and skiing in the great outdoors. I was an active person, and being active was part of who I was, part of my character and soul. With UC came a segregation of people and places I used to frequent. I could no longer do as I pleased and be safe. Safety now meant being close to bathrooms and quiet areas with locked doors, a sort of sanctuary while I did battle with the disease that raged within me.

Yes, I tried medications, yet they all worked then failed to work. Asacol, Colazal, Prednisone all of them provided only temporary relief from UC. I felt I was in a dangerous downward cycle that was leading me towards death. Having surgery to remove my colon was no longer a scary thought but instead an envisioned paradise where pain was no longer present.

Yet, before I made the all to permanent choice to have my colon removed a dear friend informed me of a diet. A protocol called the Specific Carbohydrate Diet or SCD. I was also told about a book called Breaking The Vicious Cycle and I bought it the next day. This was one of the most important decisions I could have made.

Long story short, here I am today over six years on the SCD diet and I feel I have been given a second chance at a healthy life. The road to recovery was far from easy and my setbacks many, yet the experience I have gained from my healing are priceless. UC no longer dictates my life, and how I choose to live it. I am able to ski into the far reaches of the backcountry, climb on extended climbing trips, and live a normal life with my wife and family all on my terms not on UC terms.

Managing your disease with the SCD is not easy and takes serious commitment and work but in my mind is nothing compared to living with a disease that is out of control. The SCD is not a quick fix or a magic pill or potion, yet with hard work, commitment, and courage you can gain your life back.

Tucker Sweeney
Author of  Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: A Journey Through Life, Ulcerative Colitis, and the Specific Carbohydrate Diet
BS Physical Education & Health

5 thoughts on “Tucker Sweeney’s New Book and His Success Treating Ulcerative Colitis”

  1. HEY!!! Great story Tucker!! Now that you have been on the diet for so long… are you off your meds??
    Did you know cheat somewhat on your diet? Did you notice anything that set you back diet wise?
    Also have you tried any alternative medicines??

  2. Did you **ever”” cheat somewhat on your diet… and if you did… can you give some examples?
    I have never really cheat on the diet and ive been on it for 8 months… I never cheat like eating a bread stick or slice of pizza. although I do it ham for breakfast that’s not completely SCD legal,but with cost and convenience its literally the only thing I cheat on and it really doesn’t bother me..

    1. Hey there, I have not needed to get on meds in quite a while but in years past I did have to get on colazal a few times but the flare ups were easily handled with the addition of the SCD. The flare ups usually coincided with stressful events or traveling in other countries were I was unexpectedly eating illegal foods. I really did not cheat on the diet and still do not. I have tried a few things that contained cocoa power a few times as well as agave with no real effects though. Also, canned black beans but all in moderation and only once in a while. To me it was not worth going through a month of pain for a few illegal ingredients.

      Take care, and good luck to you!

      Check out my blog for more updates: http://twostepsscd.blogspot.com/


  3. I realize I’m getting to this long after you posted and I’m hoping you are still doing great. My question is, I have been on this diet for 1 month now. All seemed to be going great and I was feeling better about 2 weeks in. However, all of a sudden I am right back to where I was…cramps, diarrhea, body aches. I have not cheated at all that I am aware of so I am so confused?!? You mentioned setbacks in the beginning of your diet. Did something like this happen to you? I guess I don’t know if I should hang in there or just assume this diet won’t work for me. Looking for some advice I guess. Thanks.

  4. Jessica…did you try anything new? Even something just slightly different than what you were doing? Like buying a different brand of a food that may have added ingredients that are not listed…

    Without knowing more, it sounds like you had a setback…but to clarify.

    Was it working for you? Meaning were you having symptoms? If so, what? When?(time of day, frequency) If you were void of symptoms you could see, how did you feel? How do you feel now? I’m just throwing some questions out there to help you think.

    The truth is if you were seeing improvements but you’re no longer seeing them, you likely ingested something that set this off. Not to worry. It happens and SCD is still a viable option. If you haven’t seen improvements, then maybe it will not work…but you said you did. Personally, I think lifestyle changes can help anyone…especially eating raw or eating SCD. While we are different, the processes involved are not different from person to person(example—most of us have ten toes. If we come out with an extra one, is that extra toe going to change how we walk, run, jump? The process to walk is still the same, as is running/jumping. Driving different model cars is the same, even though every car is different. In other words, you might not be able to tolerate an apple while most people can…however, that will not apply to all foods nor will it even apply to more than a handful. In all likelihood(using the apple example), it is not that you can’t tolerate apples. Maybe there were chemicals on the apple. Maybe your body was not ready for apple skin. Any number of things could be a factor…but very rarely will a diet change like SCD not work because the SCD principle is to remove the cause of the problem. That is one part of the SCD Elaine doesn’t explain too well…its not the proper eating that will get you healthy. Proper eating plays a role, as does getting plenty of sleep, lowering stress, exercise, and so on. It all is part of a bigger whole so it is no wonder people struggle then think they messed up. You might not have messed up at all so don’t give up. Take it slow and see if you want to try it again.

    Hope I could be of some help and made sense…Steve

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