If you’re looking for ways to reduce your risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a good place to start. Eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and managing your stress levels can all help keep your immune system functioning at its best. If you already have IBD, making these positive lifestyle changes can help you stay symptom-free and manage your condition.
A new international study published online in the journal Gut suggests that maintaining a healthy lifestyle may prevent up to 60% of inflammatory bowel disease cases, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
Inflammatory bowel disease is a chronic inflammatory condition affecting the intestines. It includes two major diseases – ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, which can cause serious digestion problems, abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, and malnutrition. The exact cause of inflammatory bowel disease is unknown, but it has been linked to genetic and environmental factors such as smoking, antibiotics, and diet.
The study included 121,700 female nurses (aged 30-55) from 11 U.S. states in 1976 from the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS). From the NHSII study, 116,429 female nurses (aged 25-42) in 1989 from 15 U.S. states were also included, and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS) included 51,529 male doctors (40-75) from across the U.S. in 1986.
Researchers created modifiable risk scores for all participants based on risk factors for IBD to estimate the proportion of IBD cases that could have been avoided. The risk factors included weight, smoking, physical activity, and the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Diet was also considered, and intake of fruit, fiber, vegetables, polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), and red meat was included in risk factors.
During the monitoring period, 346 cases of Crohn’s disease and 456 cases of ulcerative colitis were reported. However, based on the findings, researchers concluded that maintaining a healthy lifestyle could have prevented 61% of
Crohn’s disease cases and 42% of ulcerative colitis cases.
Researchers concluded the study by saying, “Lifestyle modification may be an attractive target for future prevention strategies in IBD,” they add. “This may be of particular relevance to high-risk groups, such as first-degree relatives of IBD patients, who have an estimated 2%-17% risk of developing the disease over their lifetime.”
Maintaining A Healthy Colon
Healthy Colon provides an excellent solution to healthy digestion. The unique blend of ingredients includes natural sources of fiber, herbal ingredients, and probiotics to help prevent constipation and diarrhea. Poor digestion can impact the absorption of nutrients and vitamins, depriving the body of the valuable nutrients it desires. But Healthy Colon can target a number of causes of digestive issues, promoting overall health and wellness.