Food & 3 Things to do During a Colitis Flare Up

Cooking with Colitis (and even moreso during a flare up), is not currently about the book I would love to write (see below). It’s about two other things:

  1. The idea that food has nothing to do with Colitis
  2. The idea that food has everything to do with Colitis

Cooking with Colitis – sounds like a great name for a book, and truth be told – I have been thinking about writing one (though mine might need something with a little more “sass,” –Giddy Up Gluten Free Cooking with Colitis – now we’re talking)! I have a sweet friend by the name of Stefanie Michaels (aka @AdventureGirl) who says it’s a niche I need to “eat up” (pun intended)!

Yesterday I explained to you during, “What is Proctitis” that much of the medical world doesn’t associate diet with flare ups or refraining from flare ups. I am not a doctor, but this is FAR from what I have ever experienced first hand. When I changed my diet and overall lifestyle, I no longer needed medication. And if I reverted to any old ways, after a period of time the straw would break the camel’s back and a full blown flare up lived on. This time was no different.

The good news? Instead of reaching for medication, I fell back on my tried and true (and extremely quick) way to healing.

In addition to those 3 things, when a Colitis flare up strikes, here are some of my other “Colitis Flare Up Food Tips:”

  1. No seeds. No nuts.
  2. No skins from apples, cucumber, zucchini, etc.
  3. Nothing extremely fibrous, including the skins from above and things like cauliflower and broccoli.
  4. Carbs and sugars nixed. I have 1 – 1.5 bananas a day. That’s it, and that is only because I workout and am moving 1-2 hours/day (the workout is part of the healing – more on that tomorrow).
  5. Coffee extremely watered down, if at all. I have one cup (except for the first day when I have zero) per day, watered down with unsweetened almond milk.
  6. Slow-cooked chicken is my friend.
  7. So is my homemade chicken broth and homemade vegetable broth.
  8. Fats heal. A few tablespoons of things like avocado (I whip mine up in our awesome KitchenAid) and smooth Organic Raw Coconut Butter.
  9. I eat no grains, not even the awesome gluten free ones like Quinoa.
  10. No alcohol. Not even a little red wine. Not at all!

I have been doing this for 4 days now. By day 2 (Monday) I was already leaps and bounds better. Today I’m almost fully recovered. What does it mean when you recover so quickly? You will SCREAM – YEHAW:) But furthermore, I will not make any drastic changes yet. I’m not healed; it will take longer than 4 days. But by this weekend, I’ll add more foods in. I can’t wait to share all the new things I’m going to cook up! And the following weekend?! Let’s not get ahead of ourselves….

If you remember only 3 things from this post, remember these:

  1. Just because it works for me, doesn’t mean it will work for you. But giving it a try never hurt anyone.
  2. Nothing changes if nothing changes.
  3. When you have a Colitis flare up, remember: Food is not always the enemy. We can’t solely blame it. There are several triggers.

I will talk about some of those Colitis flare up, non-food triggers tomorrow!

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    • says

      Hope you found them useful, Erin! And ps. I’m feeling FANTASTIC! I couldn’t push out my stomach if I tried. Total immediate success:)

  1. says

    Hey Sarah,

    I was wondering how much alcohol you drink when you are not seeing any active colitis symptoms? Is that something that you still go really easy on, or do you open up the drinking gates and drink freely? Great story and great tips too!

    • says

      Hi Adam! I really like red wine and vodka. I used to drink pretty occasionally, but what I found was it always triggered symptoms – even in small doses. I rarely drink now, and when I do it’s usually only 1-2 drinks. Alcohol is such a tricky one – people with digestives typically will not process it very well, but then it’s just the decision to be made about how good you want to feel:) Hope that helps!

  2. Terry King says

    Found your blog today researching “diets for colitis flare ups”. As a chronic sufferer of this disease I will be looking forward to reading any info on this that you post. I am currently battling a flare up. Thank you for sharing.

    • says

      Hi Terry! Thanks for stopping by. I have a ton of information on my blog. Just put in the “search bar” anything you want, and I’ve likely written on it before!

  3. Jane Hall says

    My first flare-up in 11 years… ugh (and it came after a 48 hour flu bug 4 weeks ago!).
    I’d forgotten how truly awful life can be when the colitis is active. Thanks for the tips.
    But slow-cooked chicken? What kind and how do you do yours? I’m just so darned hungry though :(