Crohn's Disease and the Right Diet

Patients with Crohn's disease have found that specific foods can trigger intestinal symptoms when the disease flares. Patients who learn to avoid these foods can better manage the disease and live their daily lives. It also can help reduce gastointestinal symptoms and promote healing. Crohn's disease involves an immune reaction against the intestinal tract. With this condition, the small intestine is usually inflamed which leads to difficult digesting and absorbing key nutrients. A poor appetite can lead to malnutrition for people. It can result in taste bud alterations and reduced food and nutrient intake. 


Because this disease affects the small intestine, it can lead to diarrhea and undernourishment. On top of that, the large intestine can also be inflamed, making diarrhea more severe. This combined with malnutrition leads to further issues such as anemia or low levels of folic acid, iron and vitamin B12.

It's important to note that a proven diet for any inflammatory bowel disease has yet to be proven but many researchers, experts and physicians believe that some patients can identify specific foods that trigger gastrointestinal symptoms mostly during disease flares. 

If you have had problems absorbing nutrients due to Crohn's disease, it's important to follow a high-calorie, high-protein diet, even when you don't feel like eating. In this setting, an effective diet plan talks about eating regular meals, having a routine, eating two snacks per day. This ensures you get enough protein and nutrients. In addition to this your physician may add vitamin and mineral supplements to replenish the nutrients in your body.

Avoid these foods: 

  • alcohol (mixed drinks, beer, wine)
  • butter, mayonnaise, margarine, oils
  • carbonated beverages
  • coffee, tea, chocolate
  • corn husks
  • dairy products (if lactose intolerant)
  • fatty foods (fried foods)
  • foods high in fiber
  • gas-producing foods (lentils, beans, legumes, cabbage, broccoli, onions)
  • nuts and seeds (peanut butter, other nut butters)
  • raw fruits
  • raw vegetables
  • red meat and pork
  • spicy foods
  • whole grains and bran