One of the most common topics that comes up with new and prospective clients is around what changes they can expect when modifying their diet & nutrition.
It makes sense- people want to know what they are getting into beforehand.
More importantly, people want to know if it will be worth the time, money and effort it takes to do take part in one of our programs.
We hear questions like:
- What kind of outcomes do you have with other IBD patients?
- What percentage of patients do you see that have positive outcomes?
- How long does it take to reach my goals?
- Shouldn’t I wait until after starting a treatment to incorporate nutrition, otherwise how will I know what worked?
- Will this require huge life altering changes?
At the core of these questions is that people want to know before committing what’s in store for them and if it’s actually worth their time!
I understand, which is why in today’s post I’ll break down some of what you can expect while working with us.
What outcomes can I expect?
People the Crohn’s and Colitis Dietitians for a variety of reasons including- reducing painful IBD or IBS symptoms, reducing risk of flare, improving digestive health, helping maintain a healthy weight, working on nutrient deficiencies or just simply seeking a better strategy to help manage their IBD.
We have been able to get exceptional results with those that have incorporated our method in both our group program and through 1:1 work.
- Reducing diarrhea from 20 times per day to 2 times a day
- Being able to come off imodium and laxatives
- Relief from constipation & having regular bowel movements without pain
- Expanding the diet and including foods like garlic and onion
- Being able to have a healthy pregnancy with tools in place to help IBD symptoms
- Not having symptoms reoccur between infusions
- Being able to reduce inflammation, disease activity & rectal bleeding
- Seeing improvements in bowel tissue in colonoscopy after 4 months of nutrition support
- Getting to remission after a 12 year flare
All of the above are real improvements our patients have seen!
Having a quality plan in place for your nutrition can make a huge difference.
Are there exceptions when people don’t see results?
Yes, definitely. Nutrition isn’t the only factor involved in our health.
Potential roadblocks that are in our control that sometimes keep people from seeing results include:
- Not being ready to make changes
- Not communicating when something doesn’t work
- Not being open to perspective shifts when new information is presented
However, we do find that those that see results are those that are consistently following our recommendations and asking questions when they need help.
How long do they take?
There is research that suggests that significant changes to our microbiome can occur in as little as 2-3 days of dietary changes!
However, that doesn’t necessarily translate to long term symptom reduction.
For most people we see it can take 3-6 months to start to see long term sustainable changes like reduced symptoms, improved energy and adapting to a more expanded, diverse diet.
However, this doesn’t mean that we don’t have outliers that take less time or longer to see results.
Sometimes people notice huge benefits in the first 1-2 months.
The reason for this huge variance is that everyone comes in at a different starting point and with different goals in mind.
Disease severity, location of the disease and nutrient deficiencies all play a role in what treatment plan is recommended and how long it will take to see improvements.
For example, for someone with severe anemia or very low vitamin D it can take much longer to see results until we correct these deficiencies.
Vitamin D is a key regulator of inflammation and treating it when it is low is a top nutrition priority since it can be a roadblock to success otherwise.
Anemia can also be a roadblock since it can impact energy and recovery in a very big way.
The bottom line: Expect and plan for 3-6 months before you see long term change.
How do I know if it’s food, supplements or pharma making the differences?
Wouldn’t it be nice if it was just one single thing that made a difference?
If it were only one single thing that put everyone in remission- well then we would have a cure for IBD.
The truth is, it’s hardly ever just one thing that makes a difference for people. It’s often a combination of things that we know help that when added together complement each other for an even greater effect.
Oftentimes it can be tempting to want to experiment on ourselves with different diets and supplements.
However, experimenting on ourselves isn’t best since there are so many variables involved.
A better approach to take is to lean on evidence based approaches that we already know help in different ways.
And keep in mind that it’s ok if a combination of things help you rather than just one thing.
Results Are Possible
If you are curious what’s possible for you, reach out and schedule a call here. We would love to work with you!