Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It affects the innermost lining of the colon and causes inflammation and ulcers in the digestive tract. The symptoms usually appear over time. Ulcerative colitis is caused due to abnormal response by the immune system. The condition may be mild and may affect only the rectum, known as ulcerative proctitis. In some cases, it may affect some other parts of colon and may cause severe symptoms. Younger people with ulcerative colitis usually show more severe symptoms. The condition is treated with medications like corticosteroids and aminosalicyclates. In severe cases, surgical option is recommended.
Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
Many people with ulcerative colitis experience mild to moderate symptoms. Some of the common signs and symptoms are loose and frequent bowel movements, persistent diarrhea with abdominal pain and bloody stool, cramps in abdomen, loss of appetite and weight loss. Fatigue and low energy is also very common. Among small children with ulcerative colitis, there may be delayed growth and development. There are periods of remission and flare-ups. The symptoms of ulcerative colitis may vary depending upon the severity and location of inflammation.
Causes of Ulcerative Colitis
Although the exact causes of ulcerative colitis are not clear, it is considered to be associated with immune system malfunction. Ulcerative colitis is said to be an autoimmune condition, where the immune system mistakes to identify healthy tissues and attacks them. In some cases, ulcerative colitis is hereditary and tends to run in families. Also, certain environmental factors such as certain diets or air pollution are considered to be related to develop ulcerative colitis.
Treatment for Ulcerative Colitis
The treatment aims at relieving the symptoms during flare-up and maintaining the period of remission. The doctor usually prescribes medications like anti-inflammatory drugs like aminosalicylates and corticosteroids as well as immune system suppressors and other medications like antibiotics to treat infection, anti-diarrheal medications and pain relievers. The symptoms during mild to moderate flare-ups can be managed with home treatment. More severe symptoms need proper medical treatment to prevent further complications. If medications are not working, then surgery such as ileostomy or ileo-anal pouch is recommended.
Home Remedies for Ulcerative Colitis
Since conventional treatment cannot be taken for longer time due to its side-effects, you may opt for home remedies, which are free from harmful effects and are known to give good results as well. There are some simple home remedies and improvised remedies. Let’s take a look at simple home remedies first.
Home remedies include certain changes in diet and lifestyle, which may help control the symptoms and increase the duration between flare-ups.
Following proper diet regime is very important, when dealing with the disorder like ulcerative colitis. Diet is considered to be the basic treatment. You may keep a food diary to check your diet and to understand which foods worsen your symptoms. Those with ulcerative colitis should avoid or limit the foods such as dairy products like milk and milk products, high-fat foods, high-fiber foods like fruits and vegetables. These foods may cause diarrhea and worsen the symptoms. Also, the sufferer should stay away from spicy foods caffeine and alcohol.
Avoid eating a big quantity of food at a time. Instead, try to eat small meals five to six times a day. Have plenty of water and fluids daily. But, avoid carbonated drinks, as they may worsen diarrhea. Since ulcerative colitis may affect the ability to absorb nutrients, it is recommended to take multivitamin and mineral supplements with expert advice.
Although stress is not directly related to inflammatory bowel disease, it may worsen the condition and trigger flare-ups. You can reduce stress by adopting various stress management techniques like exercise, relaxation and breathing exercises, meditation and yoga.
A variety of herbs are available to manage the symptoms of ulcerative colitis. They include Psyllium seed or husk, boswellia, bromelain, turmeric and gingko biloba. These herbs can help to relieve the symptoms and restore the health of gut.
If you are not getting satisfactory results from simple home remedies, then you may opt for some improvised remedies, which you may access from the site ‘The Crohn’s & Ulcerative Colitis Bible & Isaac Protocol’. This site reveals an e-book ‘The Crohn’s & Ulcerative Colitis Bible & Isaac Protocol’ authored by Ada Nowak. This 207 page e-book contains an excellent step-by-step program to help you to relieve the irritating symptoms of ulcerative colitis. Additionally, there are some effective remedies to boost the functioning of digestive system. Along with this, enjoy the benefits of 4 e-books namely ‘Boost Your Metabolism And Peel The Fat Off’, ‘Nostrum of Herbal Remedies: Secrets of the trade’, ‘Back Door To The Health Insurance System’ and ‘Natural Detox’. These e-books will surely guide you to improve overall health.