Foods I Eat

What CAN You Eat??
We all get this question.
You know, when you go to someone's house for dinner, they ask you what you can eat, or can't. Frankly, it's not that easy to answer.
My answer always is, "Everything" and that gets me strange looks because they know that's not true.
It's just easier than trying to explain the foods that:

1. cause me problems
2. sometimes cause me problems
3. don't cause any problems
4. I outright avoid.

Easy right? Sometimes I will just eat whatever is put in front of me and pay for it later...though, I don't do that very often. I'll even tell them not to make something special for me, I will eat what you make, but will leave on my plate what I would normally avoid.  I hate making people feel THEY need to make changes for me. It's not fair to them.

So, I'm going to try and make a list of items of things I can and cannot eat. This is tailored for me and will be different for you. This also changes on "bad" days such as a flare.


I try and stick to just water because it's the easiest, BUT, I drink Brita filtered water. I cannot drink water straight from the tap, it's caused problems for me, I've been using Brita for almost 30 years now.
I avoid soda, but do drink it occasionally, because of the sugar and causes bloating. If I drink it at a restaurant, I ask for no ice (ice is usually made from tap water) and I know I'm heading home afterward as I try to avoid public washrooms.
I drink coffee and tea occasionally, but with coffee, only brewed coffee and not instant. With 1 teaspoon sugar and no milk or cream.
Milk is a straight "nope". Way too many problems drinking milk, even lactose-free milk.
Alcohol is also a no-go. I will have a small glass of white wine at Christmas and that's it. I do miss drinking long island iced tea though...


I ALWAYS avoid "gaseous" vegetables like onions, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, asparagus, etc.
I also ALWAYS avoid all raw vegetables. They can cause blockages in the intestine because of strictures. I once was hospitalized from eating raw carrots...never doing that again, it was a very bad experience, throwing up every 5-10 minutes.
I avoid leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, kale, etc. You know....the ones you're supposed to eat. LOL
Any vegetable needs to be cooked down so it's soft.
My normal vegetables are cooked carrots, corn, potatoes, or squash. I will have cucumber, with the rind cut off.


This one is fairly easy.... chicken, fish, pork or hamburger.
The only problem I've ever had with meat is with steak. It's too hard to break down, in me anyway.


I try very hard to avoid milk or some milk products like ice cream, cream cheese, cream, cottage cheese, sour cream, whipped cream, etc.
Though, I CAN have yogurt, some cheeses (mainly hard cheddar's), and frozen yogurt.
When I was a baby, I could not drink cow's milk and was brought up on goat's milk. I outgrew it and did drink cow's milk (loved chocolate milk) as I was in soccer and figure skating, but when I was diagnosed with Crohn's, it caused wayyyy too many problems, even Lactose-free milk. So I avoid it altogether.


I try and avoid grains altogether, not easy but I stick to white or sourdough bread. But I can tolerate instant oatmeal. Good healthy grains like whole wheat etc have too much fiber.
I do my best to avoid fiber as it causes me to go to the bathroom because of a lack of large intestine.


Basically.... bananas. Everything else has fiber. Berry's have seeds and other fruits have skin that contains fiber. So the safe bet is banana's


And that's a firm NO

It's hard to list everything, but I highly recommend keeping a food/drink journal. It was very helpful when I was first diagnosed.
I kept track of the time I ate or drank, what I ate or drank when I went to the bathroom, and type of bowel movement (watery, semi-formed, etc.), as well as if there was gas or blood.

I highly recommend keeping a journal, especially for the newly diagnosed.

Protein Bars
Finally found a protein bar that doesn't cause me any discomfort or pain each day. 
I found them at Walmart and Costco here in Canada

Pork Chops
4 pork chops
341 ml (1 bottle) Beer
3 tbsp brown sugar
3/4 cup ketchup

Brown the pork chops and add pepper/salt (or your fave seasoning) and add to the baking dish.
Mix the beer, brown sugar, and ketchup together and pour over pork chops.
Bake for 1 1/2 hours, covered, at 375F, remove the cover for the last 15 minutes.
Serve with rice.
The sauce can be poured over the rice

Cinnamon and Honey Drink
4 teaspoons honey
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
3 cups water

Boil ingredients together in a small saucepan and drink 1 cup, 3 times a day, boiling it each time so its hot.

All this is to my taste, yours might be different, so feel free to tweak it any which way. 


DebraEllen said...

Hi Vern, I too have wonderful Crohn's. For me, I could never eat the cinnamon or even ketchup. When I have flare's it is a must- very very bland foods. My last flare I discovered Coke was a contributing factor in the flare. I have not had a Coke or any other soda since.

I have enjoyed reading your post. Thanks and take care!


Vern Laine said...

Hi Debra, when I'm flaring I resort to bland food or liquid only, so I hear ya. I don't think I've had a Coke in.....forever
Thanks !!

Anonymous said...

A new member of your elite In fact the lab panel is not back yet, but doc's and I are very suspicious as to my symptoms, etc.

I sure need to know, even though know meats (just ate lightly sauted filet of catfish {this is the south} and "waiting" for the verdict) has caused a flare just on 12/29.

Vern Laine said...

This is why I kept a food journal. Is it the fish that might have caused it OR was it something you ate or drank with it? For me, I know I can't eat steak, but can have hamburger, chicken or fish. If I eat, for example, mashed potatoes with it, I could get a flare sometimes depending on how they were made. Was milk or cream added? Did I have water, juice, soda, coffee to drink? It gets complicated sometimes, but worth it to figure everything out.
Good luck!!

Anon said...

I can relate, I can only eat the blandest of the bland food. Bread, peanut butter, bananas and canned sardines. Meh, so tired of bland old food. I seriously just want to eat a heavily cheesed pizza with everything on it, but I know that would land me in the ER.

Vern Laine said...

I hear ya!! I would love to do that as well

Anonymous said...

Like everyone else, I have Crohn's/Colitis. My G.I doctor told me that I can eat everything, although I know from experience that I can't. I'm having a problem tolerating everything. Recently, I had to go off real food and just consume liquids..Blech!!! I tried to drink Ensure or Boost which don't have enough nutrients for me. I recently went to a somewhat healthy 140lbs. to approximately 120lbs. I have found that I am extremely weak, no muscle toning, exhausted and sad. I now have no idea what to eat without feeling excruciatingly pain from gas, a possible blockage etc. Also, I have Osteoporosis from receiving a high amount of Chemotherapy Drugs (For Cancer that I am a survivor of), I suffer from Clinical Depression and Social Anxiety which sometimes makes me feel like not leaving my home. When I was in the hospital after being diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis then Crohn's, I didn't mention it to who I thought were my true friends. One day one of them contacted my Dad who told her all about the diagnosis. A small group of them came to visit me in hospital. What I thought was going to be a relaxing visit turned into an argument about why I didn't want to tell them. The reason that I didn't is because they didn't know what Colitis or Crohn's was. I got extremely upset and asked the nurse to escort them out of my room and never allow them to come back. When the nurse returned to take my vitals, she noticed that I had an extremely high temperature which was causing me to hallucinate.

Vern Laine said...

It's always tough and no one understands who doesn't have the disease. Ask you Gi to take a colonoscopy and maybe you have to get an ostomy. Advocate for yourself with the Dr, insist on searching and investigating more.
Keep strong