Diet is the foundation of health. What we put into our body either fuels it or harms it. Unfortunately, for those with IC there are many foods we traditionally think of as “healthy” that cause pain and suffering. When we identify and eliminate these foods, we can begin the path of healing and vitality. We must also fuel our body with the proper foods in the right portions to give our body everything it needs to thrive.
The reason it is essential to eliminate certain foods from our diet is inflammation. While acute inflammation is necessary to fight off harmful bacteria and viruses, chronic inflammation is destructive. This chronic inflammation occurs when our body cannot eliminate what is causing the inflammation, such as a food we cannot tolerate. Chronic inflammation also occurs when the body mistakenly identifies its own healthy tissue as foreign and begins attacking it, causing damage and pain.
We do know there are certain foods that cause inflammation and there are certain foods that reduce inflammation. Pro-inflammatory foods include those with added and refined sugars; refined grains; saturated fat; trans-fat; alcohol; and foods that are grilled, fried, or barbequed (AGEs). Anti-inflammatory foods are those that contain antioxidants and phytonutrients, such as fruits; vegetables; nuts and seeds; fish; healthy fats and oils; and spices.
Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” diet, especially for those with IC. Yes, there are specific foods that trigger symptoms for most if not all people with IC; however, one person with IC may be able to tolerate one food that another person with IC cannot tolerate. This seems to be one of the many reasons that IC is so difficult to treat.
Fortunately, IC Wellness has solutions for you. We work with you to evaluate your diet and lifestyle as well as provide information and support as you make the necessary lifestyle changes. We also recommend food sensitivity testing, which will identify the specific foods, chemicals and additives that may be causing symptoms. With this information, there’s no more guessing, and you are able to develop an individualized diet that addresses and eliminates your specific food triggers. The final step is to introduce foods, nutrients and self care practices that cultivate a new level of wellness and truly make your health blossom.
While activity and hydration are essential to health, they cannot negate a poor diet. Although supplements and self care can support the process, they cannot be as effective if toxins and triggers are still present. You have control over which foods you choose to eat and which foods you choose to avoid. While making these diet and lifestyle changes is not always easy, it is empowering to know that YOU are in charge of your own health, and we are here to support you. When you make the decision to choose foods that nourish your body and avoid those that cause damage, you are choosing a life with less pain and more joy. If you need help getting started our book The Complete IC Diet Cookbook will help set you on the right path.
Our mission is to help those with IC find true healing through identification of the root cause, elimination of foods that further progress the disease, and addition of nutrients and self care that bring true health and wellness. To speak with health coach Brianne Gohlke, click here.