Diagnosis IBS

Daniëlle`s story

Daniëlle Wemijer was at the end of her teenage years and had to deal with a lot of stress. Eventually, that had an effect on her intestines. Which resulted in a flat line in her social life, to quote her. She has been guided by IBD Free Life for over a year and she is doing great.

“My thoughts no longer only go out to my intestines”

The 28-year-old dental hygienist assistant from Coevorden did not suffer from complaints in her childhood. Due to stress, I started to suffer from intestinal complaints. “That meant that I had to change what I eat and drink a full day before I could go and visit someone, for example. I suffered from chronic diarrhoea and was diagnosed with IBS. This meant for me that after consuming food or drink I always had to go to the bathroom 15 minutes after. I always had to be close to a bathroom.”
“Luckily I was able to work because I knew that I could always go to the bathroom in time and I have a flexible employer. Other than that I was not able to do anything. My entire social life was becoming non-existent.”

Receiving a label

She entered the medical circuit, consulted doctors, specialist and even a hypnotist. The result? She was given diarrhoea inhibitors and the statement that she just had to learn to live with it.
I was only 28 years old and that was not the message I was waiting for. Via, via, I came in touch with IBD Free Life and I scheduled an appointment with Jeroen. Immediately, it felt like I was in the right place. He listened to me and told me truthfully what he was able to offer me and planned out a trajectory. His explanation of anatomy, the connection between intestines, body and mind and the inner workings of the intestines were exceptionally clear, says Daniëlle.

“IBS was a label that I had received. I am going to help you get rid of your label Jeroen added.”

After filling out a questionnaire, I had to do blood and stool tests. The results showed that Daniëlle was not suffering from any parasites of fungi. She was prescribed supplements for additional vitamins and minerals, which she was lacking. That was the cause why her intestines were not functioning properly. After the tests, she had a consultation with the nutritionist.

Between brackets

“I had to follow a certain diet, even though I would like to put the word diet in between brackets. It turned out that I was not suffering from a gluten allergy, so I did not have to completely stop eating wheat or gluten. But I do have to eat low in gluten, which turned out to be quite the challenge in the beginning. Because I love eating bread. I used to eat a lot of spelt bread, but that had to change. In the end, it was not as hard as I imagined it to be because I was already used to watch what kind of food and drink I consumed. It did not turn my life upside down and I thought it was manageable in the end.“

“Besides I was monitored well in the beginning. After a few weeks, it went better. I was taking different supplements and after a while, I could taper off the diarrhoea inhibitors.”

“It was going well, but then came a point at which I stagnated. That is quite difficult, heavy and also a tad emotional. It is doing something with you. You have a flying start and then suddenly nothing changes. I was told that my intestines are still searching. In my case, I will always know that my weak spot is my intestines and that will never change.”

Almost everything

“Meanwhile, I am tapering off the supplements and soon I will have the last consultation with Roelie. During that consultation, we are going to evaluate my journey. I know that I have to continue with my diet but that is alright. I feel great and I am confident to step into my car and eat something. Without having to worry about where the nearest bathroom is. That is such a pleasant realisation. I am actually able to do everything I was able to do ten years ago.”

Written by Erik Riemens
Intestinal complaints without diagnosis

Jellien`s story

Halfway through 2019, I started to get complaints. Pains in my upper stomach, difficult bowel movements, and a bloated stomach. Whatever I ate it did not sit right. The strange complaints also resulted in me having a decreased appetite and eating less.

Decreasing my food intake went well for a moment but slowly I became underweight. My body was literally and figuratively not getting enough nutrition. Which resulted in me developing even more complaints. I was feeling weak, exhausted and I stopped getting my period. My body even started to show signs of anorexia.

There was nothing to find

Because my complaints started to add up I decided to make an appointment with my family doctor. He recommended me to the hospital. In the hospital they had me undergo a lot of unpleasant tests. My intestines, oesophagus, stomach, everything was extensively researched yet nothing was found. I was only given the advice to start using antiacid.

Thanks to digestive enzymes I am able to eat again

Luckily, in the meantime, I had found IBD Free Life and was introduced to Roelie. At the beginning of the process, she listened to my story carefully and always took the time to really listen. She is a very good listener and has a lot of expert knowledge of the entire digestive function. Luckily, because of all of her knowledge, she was able to discover what the cause was of my complaints. Thanks to digestive enzymes Roelie was able to get me to eat again.

Slow recovery

Now that I was able to eat again, I was gaining weight again. Because of that, I regained my energy. I wanted to be a busy bee again and do everything I used to. But I was told to take it easy for a while. My organs needed the energy to recover and I was not allowed to spend the energy on other things.

Competent, custom and very concerned

At IBD Free Life you are getting the nutrition advice that is suited to your specific problem. The specialists are very knowledgeable and will tell you exactly how your body works and where it goes wrong. They will also tell you how you can fix this.
Also thanks to IBD Free Life I regained 10 kilos and my body is functioning properly again. Besides, I am of the opinion that Roelie is very involved and has a warm personality. That has given me faith and support.

Diagnosis UC

Jorieke`s story

Imagine this: always suffering from a stomach ache and having the need to go to the bathroom 20-30 times a day, even at night. Having diarrhoea and stool accompanied with blood. In 2007 I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. It prohibited me from doing everything. All I wanted was to live without suffering from complaints and being able to take care of or my young children and being able to enjoy the time we spend together.

Medicine did not work, what now a stoma?

The medicine I was taking only work temporarily. I also was having allergic reactions to some of the prescribed medicine. But “luckily” new medicine kept coming on to the market. I tried everything: From Prednisone, Humira, Infliximab and Azathioprine to Salofalk suppositories and enemas. Then that dreaded moment arrived that I had tried all of the possible medicine options and we needed to discuss the probability of getting a stoma.

IBD Free Life was my last chance

I was slowly getting used to the idea of getting a stoma when I read an interview with Jeroen from IBD Free Life in the paper in 2019. Maybe getting a stoma is unnecessary after all. The intake was free and without obligation, so I decided to immediately schedule an appointment.
But I had all faith in IBD Free Life and wanted to go for the full 100% for it. I saw this as my last chance.

It was very difficult for me to learn to eat differently in the beginning.

I really loved eating bread and I love to eat sweets. I really disliked the taste of eggs and fish and now I had to stop eating bread and start eating eggs. In the beginning, it was really tough and my friends and family were sceptical. My life existed out of reading nutrition labels, baking bread and making weekly schedules. That did cost me a lot of energy and time. The energy which I barely had, because the Colitis was getting worse. My appetite decreased and it became very difficult to keep to the strict diet.

Involved guidance by IBD Free Life

Luckily I was able to contact Jeroen from IBD Free Life via app daily. After two months of perseverance, I prevailed. My intestines were healing and I had an increased appetite and even started to like the taste of eggs! When I started to feel better, keeping to my diet became much easier.

Just a way of life

Baking your own bread was a very big challenge for me. Now it has become part of my lifestyle. Naturally, it is more work and takes effort. At night I meal prep a fresh salad for the next workday and bake myself an egg every morning. Eating like this makes me feel more energetic and pleasant throughout the day. Restaurants and friends are often able to take my diet preferences into account. If they are not able to do that, I will bring my own food. No problem!

No more medication

By eating the right kind of nutrition I have regained control over my intestines. It has been going great for over a year. I have gained more energy and my blood results are better than ever! I am tapering off my medicine, I have complete faith that I will be able to go completely medicine free throughout my life eventually.

My lifestyle has completely changed, that was a drastic change but most important: I have got my life back!

Intestinal complaints without diagnosis

Rees` story

My entire life I have been trying to figure out what it is that I am suffering from. I have seen a lot of doctors in hospitals. I have seen many an examination room. Underwent dismal examinations. Tried everything. My wallet was getting emptier but I was not getting any closer to an answer. No one was able to give me a clear diagnosis and because of that no clear solution.

I have tried so many things already

When I eventually stumbled upon IBD Free Life I thought: “ I should give it a try. Who does not dare, does not win. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. No harm, no foul. Something like that” I have already seen so many doctors, so naturally I was sceptical. Are these people actually capable to find out what is wrong with me? But the warm welcome and the informal ambience were a good foundation for me to trust them.

Hurrah! A gene abnormality

After filling out the anamneses, doing the blood and stool test, we discovered after a few consultations what is wrong with me. It turns out that I have a gene abnormality! In itself, it is not something to rejoice about but I am so glad to finally know what is going on with me. Because now Roelie can teach me what I can do.

Say it in plain English

Roelie translated all the difficult terms to me regarding Biochemistry to laymen terms. I understand how the body works, but especially how my body works. And what I can do to help my own body.

Expert and reliable guidance

After a lot of bad experiences, what gained my trust is that IBD Free Life never prescribed me unnecessary research. Roelie also never prescribed me expensive recourses if it was not necessary. Everyone on the staff is an expert, they are very honest and trustworthy. Even now I am still able to ask for some advice and I still get a quick response. Amazing!”

Diagnosis UC

Ellen`s story

Ten years ago I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. That was scary. I was prescribed suppositories. Which helped, so I started to taper off. Until another inflammation occurred. However, the suppositories stopped working after 4 years.

Chemo pills, injections or a stoma

I have tried everything, from chemo pills to injections. My complaints were repressed but the inflammation never disappeared. I became increasingly more ill. I was lying on my bed with migraines for three days. The medication options ran out and my only option seemed to be a stoma.

The growing feeling of guilt and a low self-esteem

Mentally it took its toll. Because of my illness, I had little energy to take care of my children. I was not able to be there for my partner, the way I wanted. My guilt kept growing and my self-esteem decreased. I was getting help from a phycologist and a neurologist.

Searching for a real solution

In January of 2018, I was completely done with everything. I stopped taking all my medication and as a result, I was in the bathroom at least 20 times a day. I could not leave the house at all. If I wanted to leave the house, I had to call ahead to shops to ask if I could use their bathroom. I was getting anxious the moment I felt the need to use the bathroom. I was distraught. Yet I was convinced that my intestinal problems are nutrition-related and that it is the key to finding the solution. So I started searching. A few weeks later I saw Jeroen le Duc from IBD Free Life at RTL Late Night (A Dutch late-night talk show) He confirmed what I already thought: nutrition is key.

Searching for the real solution

From the first moment of contact with IBD Free Life, I felt it was heading in the right direction: I received expert guidance but also empathy and reassurance. Especially in the beginning, I had a lot of questions. When I send Jeroen a text and he always responded immediately. My surroundings were worrying about me, they thought it was scary. They said: “What are you doing? You already lost 10 kilos!” But I went for it.

Regained trust in my own body

Under guidance from IBD Free Life, I changed my nutrition pattern. After 2 weeks I noticed improvement. The need to go to the bathroom decreased and I had regained control over my life. I could go to the store again, without having to call the store in advance and picking a route to the nearest bathroom during my journey. I regained trust in my own body.

It takes some getting used to, but it is working!

Especially in the beginning, it was not easy. You have to read all the labels on food in the supermarket. You cannot spontaneously go out for a drink and eat a platter of snacks. However, the new nutrition pattern is becoming a habit and you are starting to get creative with it. I am going through life without medicine for 2 years and thanks to IBD Free Life I have my life back!

Intestinal complaints without diagnosis

Corina`s story

My entire life I have been suffering from stomach aches. Even as a child I had trouble going to the bathroom. Just like my mother and just like my grandmother if I am correct. I have tried everything: eating a lot of fibres, using pouches the doctor prescribed, certain juices or other things the pharmacy recommended me. But nothing seemed to help. There were even days that I could not go to the bathroom for days. When I finally could go, it was a process that led to me getting haemorrhoids.

Constipated and depressed

The constipation was the worst. Besides suffering from constipation I was also depressed. For years. According to the family doctor, I was suffering from depression so he prescribed me anti-depression medication. I had to take them for almost 15 years. A friend referred me to DarmSpecialist. During the intake, Roelie asked me if I had other symptoms besides being constipated such as insomnia or depression. I thought that they were odd questions to ask. How did she know that? I am here about my constipation right? Later I understood that my complaints were related to each other.

The little substances do it

It soon became quite clear that my intestines are not optimally producing certain substances. That is why I was constantly constipated. That same substance is also related to depression and insomnia. From the results of the stool test, they could tell that I was also suffering from a fungal infection. The critters in my stomach did not seem to like it so much. And it turns out that I am gluten intolerant. So the nutritionist has taught me how I can eat gluten-free without a lot of hassle.

Let the sun shine in!

After I had followed a treatment course, to get rid of the fungus, I noticed that I was feeling a lot better. I have so much more energy and the world seems so much brighter. I can go to the bathroom every day now without extra effort. I also do not feel bloated anymore. The best part? I am slowly tapering off the anti-depression meds!

Intestinal complaints without diagnosis

Karin`s story

The most embarrassing moment was when we went to the zoo with our children. One was seven and the other 5 years old at the time. The previous night I experienced a stomach ache and in the morning I also had to go a few times to the bathroom. It was only a 40-minute drive, yet to be sure I checked where the nearest bathrooms were along the way. I also had downloaded a map of the zoo so I knew the exact locations of the bathrooms. Besides packing a bag for the children, I also packed myself a bag. I never left the house without clean underwear and pants.

B-line for the bathrooms

The journey went fine, but it was very busy at the zoo. We had to walk a long time from the parking lot to the entrance. There was a long line for the entrance. I felt the need to go to the bathroom enhance but I bit through it, but sweat was forming on my brow. Once inside, my husband, our children and I went to the nearest bathroom but there was a long line too…

The woman who had a trouser accident

There I was standing, with tears in my eyes. I decided to explain my problem to the first woman in line. She was kind enough to let me go first but it was too late. The need to go was too much. Just before I opened the door of the bathroom stall I felt it coming. And my bag with clean clothes and other necessities was still with my husband.

My cheeks were red with embarrassment but I walked out of the stall towards my husband. He immediately understood and took me without blinking to the family bathroom, where I could change myself into some fresh clothes. The entire day I spend watching around me to see if I saw the women who were standing in line for the bathroom that morning. To see if they recognized me, stared at me, the woman who had a trouser accident. I decided that I could not bear it any longer.

“I had little faith, they have checked me so many times, I even saw a nutritionist. What could IBD Free Life for me what they could not?”

I really suffered from inflammation and bacteria.

Via Facebook, I came into contact with IBD Free Life. I had little faith that this could actually work. They have checked me so many times before, I even saw a nutritionist. What could IBD Free Life for me what they could not? But after an intensive intake, stool and blood tests they told me that I actually have an inflamed intestine. Besides that, it turned out that I was suffering from a very nasty type of bacteria. The combination of the two caused my complaints.

Regained my freedom with the right nutrition

With IBD Free Life I learned which types of nutrition have an effect on the quality of my intestines and which nutrition types I should not eat at all. I was prescribed supplements to boost my immune system. That way my body could fight the bacteria and the inflammation on its own.

We are about 3 months along and I finally can leave the house without having to check where the nearest bathroom is. Without bringing a bag with clean supplies. That way I have regained so much freedom!

Diagnosis IBS

Jo-Ann`s story

I am from a big Indonesian family where food is centralized. There always was plenty of food. If you came over unexpectedly and there was just enough, then more was made or ordered. After years of eating too much, my intestines stopped functioning properly, which meant everything was clogged.

To the family doctor? I was too embarrassed

I was immensely suffering from constipation and ashamed for it. I was so ashamed that I did not want to see a family doctor. Because of that, I kept experiencing pain, until I could no longer bear it.

A bag filled with medications

I discussed my complaints with my family doctor and soon I was standing in the pharmacy, prescription in hand. With a bag filled with medicine, I went back home. I meticulously followed my doctor`s advice. “If the medicine is not working properly, you can enhance the doses you are taking. He told me. The constipation complaints eventually disappeared but the pain in my stomach and the bloated feeling remained.

My health is in my own hands…with some help of the internet

Because the medication was not really working, I eventually stopped. It was time to decide for myself what would be best for my health. After my search on the internet for healthy nutrition, I decided to throw everything out that has to do with processed food. (Everything that came in a pack or bag) But what is next? There is so much information regarding healthy food and it all seems contradictory. I no longer see the wood for the trees. Doctor internet gave me a lot of stress which made me spiral back to my old nutrition pattern.

Changing for the better… for real this time

The reason to really change for the better was a hectic diagnosis within our family. Healthy food was a necessity and it gave me the strength to seriously tackle the problem. I was following the study program Orthomolecular therapist and there I learned everything about nutrition and the effects of nutrition on our body. To enhance my knowledge some more I am now following the study program Epiphysiological therapist.

Together on a supermarket safari

At IBD Free Life I am now teaching others with intestinal complaints new ways of eating. I do this in a few different ways: During a consultation, during a (private) cooking workshop, a supermarket safari or I am making nutritional charts with which I provide one guidance. That way I can help others gain control over their own stomach.

Diagnosis IBS

Roelie`s story

Even as a child I always suffered from a stomach ache. During my teenage years, I was diagnosed with a spastic colon. The advice I was offered: Eat more whole grain bread and drink a lot of water. There is not a lot more you could do, is what the doctor said. If I had known what I do now, it would have saved me a lot of pain.

From fascinated patient to cum laude graduate specialist

In 2015 I was suffering from a severe burn-out. I have drastically turned my life around. I quit my job and decided to do some research into nutrition and health. I became so fascinated that I decided to go back to university. Within 4 years I graduated cum laude from the HBO study program Basic Medical Knowledge and the study program Orthomolecular Epiphysiological therapist. In 2020 I will graduate as Epiphysiologist.

“Eat more whole grain bread and drink a lot of water. If I had known what I do now, it would have saved me a lot of pain……”

I now, know what is going wrong and how to fix it.

I know so much about the biochemistry of the human body. Where it can go wrong, but more important: how to solve the problem. As a therapist, I am guiding people with intestinal complaints for more than two years. Almost all success stories. At IBD Free Life I am a consultant but I am also the interpreter of the blood and stool tests.

Woman on a mission

I meet Jeroen during the study program Epiphysiology. We decided to combine our knowledge and experience. That is how IBD Free Life was born. Our goal? Reducing the number of people with intestinal complaints drastically. (1 in 4 people in the Netherlands)

Diagnosis Crohn

Jeroen`s story

It was just a regular workday in 2015. As an employee of Safety and Service with the NS (A Dutch railway company), I was walking in my uniform over the platform of Utrecht Central station. Suddenly, out of nowhere, I experienced a sharp sting in my stomach. The world slowed and time seemed to stop. The only thing that existed was that dreadful pain. After a few seconds, the pain slowly faded away. It seemed like a very odd experience but no immediate reason to go to and see my doctor. Or so I thought.

Holy shit! Crohn`s disease?

In the first months after that first sting in my stomach, the stinging pain kept occurring more frequently. Eventually, it became almost a daily occurrence. I was no longer able to deny that something was wrong. After the internist had done his research I was given a diagnosis: I have Crohn`s disease. A chronic intestinal disease. Shit. Treatment consisted out of slowing and repressing the symptoms with medicine. To discuss the treatment I had to come back a week later. But I never made that appointment.

Medicine? No way!

The pain flashes have a name now, so I was able to go and do some targeted research and try to find a solution. Because I was determined to find a different way to live without medicine. I was raised with the idea that if you can live without using the medication you should. You should look at what you can do yourself first. I read everything regarding the relationship between nutrition and chronic intestinal diseases. I was my own guinea pig and experimented on myself trying to see what the effects on my intestines were.

“Collecting knowledge and experimenting has taken 6 months in total. Ever since I am living complaint and pain-free without ever having used any medicine.”

Pain and complaint-free

My search and experiments took 6 months. By changing my nutrition I gained more energy, the pain in my stomach lessened and my stool improved. Ever since I am living without any pain or complaints. Without having used medicine up to the present day.

I am a graduate Orthomolecular and Epiphysiological therapist

To share my personal succus with the world, I have followed different study programs and I am a graduate Orthomolecular and Epiphysiological therapist, specialized in IBD Inflammatory Bowel Disease, also known as chronic intestinal inflammation. By using my expertise in these fields, I will not only look at the symptoms, but also at the entire processes of the body and mind, and take a look at the source of the complaints. That way I will help others with my knowledge and experience. Because chronic? That is not okay in my book.

Complaint free without medicine with IBD Free Life

During one of my study programs, I meet Roelie and together we founded IBD Free Life. Since the start, we have guided dozens of people with the “IBD-Free method” to a life without pain, complaints, and….. a life without medication.