I’ve avoided vegetables for my IBD. How should I go about adding them back?

Glad to hear you’re adding vegetables back to your diet! Living with Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis does not mean you need to live without vegetables!

Here are 5 tips for reintroducing vegetables:

1. Add one vegetable at a time. Adding more than one food per sitting increases your risk of feeling unwell and will make it more difficult to determine the offending food.

2. Start with a small amount. One-half cup is a good starting point for vegetables.

3. If the vegetable has a peel then peel it. If it has a stalk, then remove it (e.g. broccoli, asparagus). If it can be cooked, then cook it. Cooked and peeled vegetables are easier for the gut to break down.

4. Chew your food well and eat slowly. This applies to all foods, all the time.

5. Choose a relaxed environment to reintroduce foods. Stressful environments can hinder your tolerance.

Not sure where to start? Lots of people with Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis fare well with peeled and mashed root vegetables, like carrots, parsnips, and turnips. Others prefer peeled zucchini, summer squash, and seedless cucumbers.

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