Can You Help Me With Crohn’s Disease?
Julian Whitaker, MD
Dear Dr. Whitaker,
Would you supply me with whatever information you have on dealing with Crohn’s disease? I have had it for 36 years and they want to do surgery and remove my large bowel. I don’t want to go that route. Any nutritional information you can give me would be helpful. — Pastor David, NE
The first thing I’d recommend isn’t a nutrient but a safe, effective drug that your doctor probably doesn’t know about: low-dose naltrexone (LDN). In a recent pilot study, Jill Smith, MD, of the Pennsylvania State College of Medicine treated patients with Crohn’s disease, an autoimmune disorder of the intestinal tract, with 4.5 mg of LDN at bedtime for 12 weeks, and then followed them for an additional month. Eighty-nine percent of the participants responded to LDN, and 67 percent went into remission. Dr. Smith is now conducting a larger phase II placebo-controlled trial of LDN involving children with Crohn’s.
Diet modifications are also helpful. By now, you likely know what foods exacerbate your symptoms. If you aren’t sure, try eliminating common problematic items such as milk, gluten, citrus, tomatoes, additives, preservatives, sugars, and starches.
Crohn’s is associated with poor nutritional status, which means taking a good daily multivitamin is essential. Correcting vitamin D deficiencies alleviates symptoms in some patients, so make sure you get adequate sun exposure and talk to your doctor about testing your blood level of vitamin D (25(OH)D). If it’s below 50 ng/mL, take enough supplemental vitamin D to bring it into the optimal range.
Other supplements with proven benefits for Crohn’s disease include aloe vera (I’ve heard good things about AMP Floracel and Digestinol), the amino acid glutamine, fish oil, curcumin, and probiotics.
- Look for these supplements in your health food store or call (800) 810-6655 to order
- To schedule an appointment for treatment of Crohn’s at the Whitaker Wellness Institute, call (866) 944-8253.
Modified from Health & Healing with permission from Healthy Directions, LLC. Photocopying, reproduction, or quotation strictly prohibited without written permission from the publisher. To subscribe to Health & Healing, click here.