Knowing what we’re consuming and how it affects our bodies is essential to maintaining good health and especially important if you suffer from Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis. The right foods can soothe a flare or cause major discomfort if you aren’t aware of your triggers. A great way to identify these triggers and discover patterns is with maintaining a food journal. It’s easy to do and can be a great tool in helping you manage your symptoms.
Identify which foods and beverages are best to avoid, energy spikes and slumps throughout your day and any. Here are a few food journal tips to keep in mind.
Hold yourself accountable to documenting your food. Set a recurring alarm for an hour before bed, so you know to recount your food at the same time every day. If you’re prone to hitting ‘snooze’ and ignoring your alarm, take a dry erase pen and write a reminder on your bathroom mirror. When you go to brush your teeth before bed, this cue will trigger you to spend a few minutes recounting your day.
It’s easy to let things ‘slide’ or not want a permanent record of the ‘bad’ foods we indulge in, but being thorough and honest is what makes this exercise worthwhile. If you have a sweet tooth and fail to recount your sugar intake, you could be missing vital information in identifying your triggers foods.
When food journaling for the purpose of Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis management, you want to track not just what you’re eating but when you’re eating and how much. The frequency of what you’re eating and the volume can have a major impact on your symptoms. Don’t lose out on monitoring these key factors!
Make food journaling even easier with the use of mobile apps. Apps like GI Buddy and My Symptoms Food Diary and Symptom Tracker make it simple and convenient to manage your food journaling initiatives and ultimately give you a history to recount the ways in which food can affect your Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis symptoms.
Crohn's and Ulcerative Colitis affect each person differently, so diet changes will also affect people differently, what can be helpful for one may not be helpful for another. If you are interested in supplementing your current medication with a diet-based treatment, click here and fill out a quiz to confirm your candidacy.
Dr. Kelvin Hornbuckle
Virginia Beach, Virginia