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!