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7 Tips That Helped Me Maintain Weight in an IBD Flare-Up



Remember, no matter how you look or feel, you are worthy of your own love.

While most symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are invisible, the weight loss is an extremely visible one that puts a strain on those affected, both physically and mentally.

Maintaining an appropriate weight is often a constant challenge as weight can fluctuate slightly in people with IBD. In a culture that praises smaller bodies, we are sometimes even praised for weight loss, which is perceived as a sign of health rather than a sign of a chronic, invisible disease.

Losing weight and struggling to maintain a healthy weight with IBD is something I’ve worked on for many years. During this time I lacked confidence and self-love.

Even at times when I was doing really well, I couldn’t get past a certain number on the scale. I often felt like I was going to evaporate. I felt bones that people shouldn’t be feeling because they’re usually protected by fat, which was scary and unnerving.

However, I’ve managed to gain weight using the strategies outlined below and keep it off for the long term.

Most of our nutrients are absorbed from food in the small intestine. Since the small intestine is involved in Crohn’s disease, it can be a significant barrier to weight gain and maintenance.

Even if ulcerative colitis (UC) occurs only in the large intestine, it doesn’t mean that patients with UC shouldn’t focus on healing inflammation. That’s because inflammation from intestinal permeability, bacterial and fungal overgrowths, food sensitivities, and more can occur – not just from inflammation directly from IBD. In addition, inflammation in the colon is its own concern.

The more inflammation you have, the more difficult it will be for your body to absorb nutrients. That hurts your chances of reaching a reasonable weight.

I saw improvements in my weight as I made my diet simple but nutritious. I left out some of the “fun” gluten-free snacks I enjoyed and focused on proteins, pasture-raised butter and extra virgin olive oil, bone broth, teas, and herbs.

I even switched out some of the products I used on my skin and at home to eliminate them as potential sources of stress on my body.

To start healing inflammation, focus on an anti-inflammatory diet and incorporate the best foods for colon health.

In general, an anti-inflammatory diet is low in sugar and free from refined grains. The focus should be on whole foods such as high-quality proteins, fats, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds according to tolerance and water as the main source of hydrate.

You can consider additional supplements like collagen, ginger, turmeric, tart cherry juice, and other foods or herbs that have been shown to improve inflammation.

It’s important to evaluate what you eat on a typical day and see how you can tweak the types and amounts of your foods. Insufficient intake of macronutrients, including protein, carbohydrates, or fat, can be harmful, especially if you are already underweight.

If you’re looking to gain weight, now is not the time to cut down on macronutrients (I’m looking at you, keto.)

Try to prioritize whole food macronutrients. What I mean is pick sweet potatoes over bread. Choose chicken, beef, and fish over protein powders. Opt for extra virgin olive oil, pasture butter (if tolerated) and coconut oil instead of vegetable oils. This provides nutrients that are much easier to use and have health benefits.

Make a mental checklist and make sure there are always protein, fat, and carbohydrates on your plate. You may want to work with a nutritionist or nutritionist to make sure your servings are appropriate for your goals.

Some foods have more calories than others, which can be a great thing when you are trying to gain weight.

Fats have the most calories per gram compared to proteins and carbohydrates. Higher fat foods like coconut, avocado, nuts – and the products made from them – are foods to consider on a daily basis.

Think about how to include more of these high calorie foods in your diet.

Whenever I needed to gain weight and maintain weight, I added sliced ​​avocados to dishes, ate smoothies between meals, and ate rice cakes with nut butter.

An extra dash of extra virgin olive oil or avocado slices add up if you make these choices consistently.

These are just a handful of ways you can add high calorie (but still nutrient dense) foods to your plate.

It is common for large meals to cause gastrointestinal discomfort in IBD. Larger meals during the day can cause diarrhea in some, which is not helpful in gaining weight.

If you experience gastrointestinal symptoms while trying to gain weight, eating smaller meals and snacks throughout the day will likely make you feel better and won’t cause additional symptoms in the long run.

To ensure you have access to many of the food options that you can get hold of on a daily basis, buy and prepare some easy-to-grab groceries. Some additional snacks I’ve stocked up on are:

  • soft-boiled eggs
  • Meat sticks or jerky
  • dried mango
  • yogurt
  • hot buckwheat cereal or oatmeal
  • Bananas
  • Apple sauce
  • grilled chicken strips
  • smoked salmon
  • gluten-free toast or waffles with jam and nut butter

Make sure you leave extra snacks where you work or where you spend time outside of your home.

It can be difficult to get enough calories in without feeling like you’re eating all day.

Not only that, but not every job or lifestyle can eat that often.

Liquid food can be a helpful supplement here to support a nutrient-rich diet or to temporarily replace solid food if necessary.

One important note: research liquid supplements before buying or incorporating them. Some popular liquid supplements on the market use bad ingredients. Keep in mind that as you gain weight, you want to cure inflammation, so avoid things like corn fillers, vegetable oils, and artificial ingredients.

Use these as a supplement to your diet. They can be taken between meals when you don’t have time to eat a full meal, or as a substitute for solid foods to give your digestive system a break.

I haven’t moved my body productively for so long. Apart from the occasional short walks, exercise was not part of my lifestyle.

I was either too tired or afraid that exercise would burn calories that I couldn’t afford to lose. It didn’t occur to me then that I should try on purpose.

Weight training helps build muscle which will benefit your body composition goals. In addition, it is important to maintain muscle mass, as a lack of exercise and lack of nutrients puts you at risk of losing.

I haven’t started and don’t recommend weight training if you are in or recovering from a surge or generally feeling weak. Bodyweight exercises are great to get started with and to add to your routine later.

Try everything from lunges, squats, pushups, planks, and more. Start slowly and gradually increase your repetitions as can be tolerated.

You don’t need a lot of time for these exercises. Start your day with some of these exercises, or take breaks during your work day and pump a few reps.

This is a more drastic option and takes your overall health and vitality into account. You should consider the pros and cons, as well as your state of health.

I am listing this as an option because bowel resection surgery has allowed me to make leaps in my weight and general health.

How does this work? A surgeon will remove the parts of your bowel that are scarred from inflammation and possibly other severely inflamed areas. Without these compromised areas, you can absorb nutrients much more easily and experience less pain.

For me it was like getting a clean slate. I was able to gain weight and have held this weight for over 2 years until remission.

The surgery brought me other benefits, such as a lot of energy and a reduction in symptoms.

Is A Colon Resection Right For You? This is a question you need to ask your doctor and discuss with a gastrointestinal surgeon. If you are having a hard time getting through relapses, maintaining your weight, or managing pain that is interrupting your life on a daily basis, your doctors may think this is a good option for you.

Remember, every body and case of IBD works differently. People take and hold weight in different capacities.

Gaining weight also takes time, especially when dealing with inflammation and pain. Be gentle with yourself and your trip, and contact your doctor and other healthcare professionals who can assist and guide you along the way.

The most important thing I want to take away from you is that you are worthy of your own love no matter how you look or feel.

Looking back, I can see that I didn’t love myself when I really needed it. Appreciate the challenges your body is going through and don’t lose sight of what you can achieve.

Alexa Federico is a Boston-based writer, nutritional therapist, and autoimmune paleotrainer. Her experience with Crohn’s disease inspired her to work with the IBD community. Alexa is an aspiring yogi who would live in a cozy cafe if she could! She is the guide in the IBD Healthline app and would love to meet you there. You can also connect with her on her website or on Instagram.

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Healthy Eating

Here’s how longer lunch breaks may encourage kids to eat more fruits, vegetables | Health



Parents, watch out! When kids have lunch at school, fruits and vegetables may not be their first choice. But with more time at lunch, they are more likely to resort to these healthy foods, a new study found.

The results of the study were published in the journal “JAMA Network Open”.

If we’re looking to improve children’s diet and health, taking longer school lunches can help meet those goals, according to a study by the University of Illinois.

“A sitting lunch break of ten minutes or less is quite common. The scheduled lunch break may be longer, but students will have to stand in line to get their food. And sometimes sharing lunch breaks with breaks Meals are much shorter than the scheduled time, “said Melissa Pflugh Prescott, assistant professor in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at U of I.

Prescott and study co-authors Xanna Burg, Jessica Metcalfe, and Brenna Ellison compared fruit and vegetable consumption during 10 and 20 minutes of sedentary lunchtime, and the results were clear.

“During the shorter lunch breaks, children ate significantly fewer fruits and vegetables in their meal, while there was no significant difference in the amount of drinks or main dishes consumed. It makes sense that you eat the part of the meal you are looking for, forward to the first, and when there is enough time left, you can move on to the other parts. But when there isn’t enough time, these items suffer, and they’re usually fruits and vegetables, “Prescott explained.

This particularly affects children from low-income families who participate in the National School Lunch Program and may not have the resources to bring their own lunch from home in order to avoid lunchtime waiting times, she added.

Prescott and her colleagues conducted the study using elementary and middle school children enrolled in a summer camp on the University of Illinois campus. The researchers set up the lunch area as a school canteen, where students walk through the food line and choose their food. They prepared meals according to the guidelines of the National School Lunch Program.

“We tried to make this as comparable as possible to everyday school life. We worked with the local school district and used the same grocers as they did and we selected the menu items based on the local public school menu, ”explained Prescott.

Each day was randomly assigned to either a short or a long lunch day. Each short lunch menu was paired with a long lunch menu with an identical menu. The researchers wanted to rule out that the foods offered would lead to differences in the children’s diet.

Research assistants took a photo of each tray as the children left the food line. They monitored the time from when the children sat down to the end of the meal and observed behavior throughout the meal, including eating together, interacting with peers, and using the phone.

After the lunch break, the children put their tray with the leftovers on a rack and completed a two-question survey about the taste and appearance of their meal. The researchers measured all the servings before and after the meal to get an estimate of how much each child ate.

While fruit was consumed more frequently than vegetables overall, consumption of both types of food was significantly higher during longer lunch breaks, Prescott said, introduced in 2010 to improve nutritional standards for school meals.

“In my opinion, one of the best things about the new nutritional standards is that a variety of vegetables are served each week to ensure that children of all income and resource strata are given a variety of healthy foods that they may not have access to but when we have lunch breaks that is too short to give children the opportunity to get used to these foods, then we are putting the guidelines close to failure, “said Prescott.

“The most important finding from our study is that children need protected time to eat their fruits and vegetables. Our findings support guidelines that include at least a 20-minute sedentary lunch break in school, ”she said.

Lunchtime guidelines can be set at the district level, with some leeway for individual schools to set their own standards; For example, schools may introduce a longer lunch break than the district mandates dictate.

Prescott found that longer lunchtimes, in addition to a healthy diet, can also have positive effects on children.

“The time the children have sitting is also a very valuable time for them to get in touch with their peers. You may have limited opportunities to do this throughout the school day. We saw significantly fewer social interactions during the 10-minute lunch break, suggesting other positive results may come from longer lunch breaks, “she concluded.

This story was published through a news agency feed with no changes to the text. Only the heading was changed.

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Healthy Eating

The #1 Best Food to Eat to Reduce Inflammation, Says Dietitian



Is It Really Possible To Choose A Food To Reduce Inflammation? According to Toby Smithson, MS, RDN, LD, CDCES, FAND, Diabetes Lifestyle Expert at DiabetesEveryDay and author of Diabetes Meal Planning and Nutrition for Dummies.

“It’s hard to pick just one food as the best food to reduce inflammation,” says Smithson. “Reducing inflammation is a holistic nutritional approach that follows the guidelines for the Mediterranean Diet. More specifically, it’s a diet that’s high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, fish, and healthy oils. “

According to a study published by Cambridge University Press in the journal Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, the Mediterranean diet may reduce chronic inflammation, which may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition, research shows that the Mediterranean diet is also linked to longer life and is also regularly ranked as the best diet for weight loss.

However, while many of the foods in the Mediterranean diet are helpful in reducing inflammation, there is one food in particular that is particularly powerful in reducing inflammation and that is cherries.

Cherries are high on the list for reducing inflammation“Says Smithson. “They get an A + for their antioxidant content (anthocyanins, beta-carotene, and vitamin C) as well as polyphenols, which act as antioxidants and can stop damage to your cells. Studies have shown that cherries reduce inflammation and oxidative stress. “

Thanks to these antioxidants, cherries can help reduce inflammation from joint pain and even swelling from arthritis. Studies also show that tart cherry juice is also helpful in reducing inflammation.

Now that you are aware of all of the amazing anti-inflammatory benefits of eating cherries, you may as well include them in your diet! Here are a few healthy recipes made with this sweet fruit that you can easily make at home. Then check out our list of the 100 Easiest Recipes You Can Make.

Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Enjoy this sweet fruit in a creamy smoothie bowl in the morning, topped with coconut chips, cocoa nibs and cherries, of course.

Get our recipe for a chocolate-covered cherry smoothie bowl.

Chocolate and cherry bread pudding with pistachios in a baking tray with spoonWaterbury Publications, Inc.

Use some leftover bread and beat that cherry bread pudding for dessert one night! This bread pudding uses two whole cups of cherries that give you that cherry goodness with every bite.

Get our recipe for Chocolate Cherry Bread Pudding with Pistachios.

Honey pecan cherry granolaJason Donnelly / Eat This, Not That!

Use up your bag of dried cherries and prepare this granola for easy yogurt parfaits on busy mornings!

Get our Honey Pecan Cherry Muesli recipe.

melted lava cherry chocolate cake with frozen yogurt and spoon on black plateJason Donnelly

Melted lava cake with cherries for dessert? It doesn’t get much better than that. Unless, of course, it’s a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Get our recipe for Pressure Cooker Melted Lava Chocolate Cherry Cake.

Paleo fruit smoothie in a glass on wooden surfaceRebecca Firkser / Eat This, Not That!

This two-layer fruit smoothie combines a peach smoothie bottom with a cherry smoothie top. It’s paleo, which means you don’t have to worry about dairy or added sugar!

Get our recipe for Easy Paleo Fruit Smoothie.

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Healthy Eating

US Labor Department to offer virtual seminars in August about prevailing wage requirements



LUMBERTON – Cooking summer vegetables with fresh herbs is a delicious variant of summer products. With the Robeson County Farmers Market now open, as well as other product stalls across the county, it’s the perfect time to explore fresh herb growing and / or cooking. Whether you plant them yourself or buy them at the farmer’s market or in the grocery store, using fresh herbs you can quickly transform ordinary meals into extraordinary dishes.

In addition to helping the taste of foods while saving on salt, fat, and sugar, herbs can provide additional benefits. Researchers have found that many culinary herbs (both fresh and dried) contain antioxidants that can help protect against diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Cutting a fresh herb into a dish also instantly gives the appearance an extra boost!

Unless your recipe dictates otherwise, add more delicate herbs like basil, chives, coriander, dill leaves, parsley, and mint a minute or two before the end of cooking, or sprinkle them over the food just before serving. Somewhat less delicate herbs like oregano, rosemary, and thyme can be added in the last 20 minutes of cooking. A general guideline when using fresh herbs in a recipe is to triple the amount of any dried herb. When replacing, it is often more successful to replace dried herbs with fresh herbs than the other way around. Think, for example, of potato salad with fresh versus dried parsley!

Buy herbs just before you plan to use them. If you’re growing herbs in your own garden, the ideal time to pick them is in the morning, after the dew has dried, but before the sun gets hot. This helps to ensure the best taste and storage quality. You can store fresh herbs in an open or perforated plastic bag in the vegetable drawer of your refrigerator for a few days. If you don’t have access to commercially available perforated bags, use a sharp object to drill several small holes in a normal plastic bag.

When you have more herbs than you can eat, enjoy herbal bouquets all over the house. You can either use individual herbs or combinations of herbs, or use the herbs as greens mixed with other flowers. To preserve the aroma and color of your herbal bouquets, place them out of direct sunlight.

One of my difficulties with using fresh herbs is knowing the best combinations. Here are a few suggestions;

– Basil goes great with tomatoes and great with fresh pesto.

– Chives can be added to dips, potatoes and tomatoes.

– Coriander is used in salsas and tomatoes and is used in Mexican, Asian, and Caribbean cuisines.

– Dill enhances the taste of carrots, cottage cheese, fish, green beans, potatoes and tomatoes.

– Mint is often used in carrots, fruit salads, parsley, peas, tabbouleh and teas.

– Oregano gives flavor to peppers and tomatoes.

– Parsley – the curled leaf is the most common, but the flat leaf or Italian parsley is more flavorful and is often preferred for cooking. Naturals for parsley are potato salad, tabbouleh, and egg salad sandwiches.

– Rosemary is often used in chicken, fish, lamb, pork, fried potatoes, soups, stews, and tomatoes.

– Sage can refine beef, chicken, potatoes, pork, carrots and summer squash.

– Thyme is often used with eggs, lima beans, potatoes, poultry, summer squash, and tomatoes.

Adapted from Fresh Herbs: A Healthy Eating Image from the University of Nebraska Lincoln Extension.

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