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Diet For Gi Issues


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#1 barefut

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Posted 08 August 2007 - 06:54 PM

I've been wondering about diet, the same as Jennifer, about my GI issues specifically, which have been flaring and there seems to be no rhyme or reason as to what I eat or don't eat that makes it any better or worse.

I've been taking probiotics off and on but for the past week have gotten serious about them and put them in my daily pill dispenser. No improvement yet.

My appetite is ok but I don't want to eat because of the inevitable.... :(

Has anyone found anything that works for them or can you tell me what food triggers I should avoid?

One thing I have learned is I cannot drink even decaf from my favorite espresso shop or I will be in pain within 20 minutes.

I have been toying with the idea of going all liquid with fruit/yogurt smoothies and vegetable drinks to see if that helps.

Thanks,
B

#2 jefa

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Posted 08 August 2007 - 07:49 PM

Commercially prepared vegetable drinks can contain a lot of salt. I have found that limiting the amount of citrus and tomatoes has helped considerably. I don't have a juicer anymore, but I used to enjoy my daily combos of fresh juice drinks: green apple and carrot was a favourite.

I was feeling pretty down about not enjoying some of the meals I cooked and I noticed that I was tending to mix everything together on my plate cut in smaller and smaller portions. Then I thought, why not take it one step further with my food processor? I have taken serving my husband's portion on his plate and put mine straight into the food processor for a quick chop (not pureed, just reduced to much smaller pieces). Everything goes in together: salad, potatoes, chicken, for example. When I eat it, there is still a variety of textures, flavours and temperatures and it tastes a lot better than some of the alternatives.

I haven't tried probiotics in pill form. We have become quite used to having our daily yogurt as dessert. :)
Warm wishes,
Jefa

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#3 susie54

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Posted 09 August 2007 - 01:48 AM

Hey Barefut,

I have found diet doesn't really affect the overall pattern of my MCTD but certain foods do give me trouble. Mainly I have given up all pastas, cereals,milk and generally processed foods. Of course I am not perfect and have milk products and grains in other things once in awhile. I mean who could live without ICE CREAM.
I just found that if I stick to fresh foods, fish, chicken, vegetable and fruit that I feel my best. But I still have trouble with motility. It just flares up, no matter what. But I think eating better makes me feel the best I can. I hope this helps.Susie54

#4 janey

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Posted 09 August 2007 - 03:54 AM

Barefut,
You're right - there is no rhyme nor reason to what in our diet causes what. I think we all make discoveries through experimentation. What works for one may not work for another. The one thing I have found that has been a positive change for the GI is the elimination of heavy grains - whole wheat, brown rice, crackers, chips - all that good stuff. I've also eliminated all dairy but that was for another reason and that has been a positive change as well. However, I do miss the ice cream!

We do have a section on scleroderma and diet. You might find some helpful information there as well. It's not specific for gi problems, but mostly for inflammation reduction. You have received some good ideas. I hope you find something that helps you. You just need to experiment until you find the right combination. I never would have considered putting everything in the blender - but Hey Jefa - if it works, it works!

Let us know when you find something that helps!

Big Hugs,


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#5 Sweet

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Posted 09 August 2007 - 10:08 AM

Barefut,

Have you had any testing done for food allergies? I had similar problems, then had testing, identified I was allergic to dairy and wheat and voila! but them out of my diet and I'm better.
Warm and gentle hugs,

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#6 Joel

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Posted 09 August 2007 - 03:53 PM

Hi Barefut,

I had the same problem and could find no rhyme or reason to what I ate. My belly would get huge with gas and I would vomit to relieve the pressure. I learned that SSc can present itself as a psuedo bowel obstruction. Before I was diagnosis with SSc I was cut open to only find nothing wrong. After 9 months of trying to figure out my diet and losing 80 lbs I was finally diagnosis with a bacterial overgrowth of the small bowel. This is common with SSc due to the motility problem. My rheumatologist didn't diagnosis, my GI doctor did. They put me on a rotation of antibiotics and solved the problem. I gained back 40 lbs, which was just right, and I feel better and can eat almost anything (no milk or icecream, I can eat cheese!)

Hope this helps,

Joel

#7 barefut

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Posted 09 August 2007 - 06:42 PM

Hi Joel,

Did you have any other symptoms besides gas and weight loss?

I keep getting needle like stabbing pains in my upper abdomen as well as diarrhea.

I have heard of bacterial overgrowth but not sure what to watch out for.

Thanks,
Barefut

#8 Joel

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Posted 10 August 2007 - 05:12 AM

Yes, the pain got so bad that I went to the emergency room while I was on vacation visiting my wife's family in August of 2005. The doctor decided to cut me open and take a look after a couple of days of observation with acute pain coming and going (I hadn't been diagnosis with SSc yet) . He didn't find any problems with my bowel.

For the next 9 months a typical day would start out with me feeling okay so I would eat a little breakfast. Usually by noon I was feeling not so good. I might try and eat a little lunch if I could. By 2:00p I was vomiting and would leave work so I could lay down (I would get some relief by laying down). I usually did not eat until the next morning. This routine caused me to go from 240 lbs to about 155 lbs (I'm 6'-1").

The antibiotics that have worked for me so far are Ciprofloxicin 500mg BID with Metronidazole 250mg BID. I took these for almost one year before they started to become ineffective. I then went to Amoxi/Clavul 500mg/125mg BID which worked great then went back to the Ciprofloxicin/Metronidazole after a couple of months and it is working fine. My GI doctor wants to introduce a third antibiotic called Rifaximin (Xifaxin ?). He wants me to rotate monthly between the three antibiotics.

Ideally my doctor would like me to not take any antibiotic for one week per month. I tried and within two days I was really sick.

Joel

#9 barefut

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Posted 10 August 2007 - 06:21 AM

Oh man that sounds awful! How were you able to keep working?

I had no idea antibiotic treatment would have to last so long. That must be because the root of the problem (dismotility) cannot be fixed?

You must also suffer with side effects from the antibiotics?

I am sorry you can't be without them.

So glad you are doing better now!

Thanks for sharing.
Barefut

#10 Sheryl

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Posted 10 August 2007 - 08:24 AM

Joel,
Sounds like you are on a good regiment. Xifaxin is awesome. Also, levaquin was prescribed for me. Between the two and a few months I was better. I also now have to take Colestid 3 pills two times daily. To make things appear to be more normal. I have only had to take the anitbotics two or three times a year now. I have a standing prescription to take in with me if I need it filled. I rotate between the levaquin and xifaxin. If I don't use the script before the year is out I just stop by the doctors office and pick one up. That is in case I am out of town or need to get something filled on a weekend. That way I don't have to wait. Another thing that has helped take some of the pain away is to eat very little cheese and milk. I am borderline lactose intolerant anyway. Sheryl
Strength and Warmth,
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#11 Joel

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Posted 10 August 2007 - 08:37 AM

I have not worked since last June. I've been on disibilty since October, 2006. Along with the bowel problem I have also been dealing with pulmonary fibrosis since 2001. My lungs are operating at about 50%. So I continue to battle shortness of breath, fatigue, low energy and joint pain. Since I don't work it helps. Low stress has certianly played a part in managing the disease.

As far as side effects, I have noticed some discoloration in my teeth. Otherwise, if there are other side affects they pale compared to the bowel pain I was having before the antibiotics.

I hope this helps,
Joel