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Can inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) be treated by diet alone?

A lot of people want to try to treat their inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) with diet alone. It is important to note that diet has not been implicated as a cause for IBD with the exception of possibly high-fat animal proteins. IBD is not related to food allergies, and there are no specific foods that have been identified that worsen the actual disease once you have been diagnosed.

As of yet, there is no IBD-specific diet that helps to treat inflammation. A lot of different theories are out there, and many different diets have been tried. However, a lot of the time, those diets lead to malnutrition and eventually a worsening of disease activity. Nevertheless, diet is important in the management of IBD because the most important aspect is to maintain adequate caloric intake and hydration. Malnutrition is associated with worse outcomes, including more infections and more hospitalizations.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.