Diet alone can lead children with mild to moderate ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease into clinical remission, suggests a small study published online December 27, 2016, in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology.
"This changes the paradigm for how we may choose to treat children with inflammatory bowel disease [IBD]," lead author David L. Suskind, MD, from Seattle Children's Hospital in Washington, said in a hospital news release.
Most centers typically treat with steroids or other medications, which come with potential adverse effects, the authors note.
Specific Carbohydrate Diet
The diet tested over the course of 12 weeks is called the specific carbohydrate diet (SCD), and it removes processed foods and sugars (except honey), dairy, and grains. It includes only vegetables, fruits, meats, and nuts — natural foods rich in nutrients.
At the end of the 3-month study, eight of the 10 patients, aged 10 to 17 years, who finished the study achieved remission from the diet alone, the authors report.