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Q. What kind of dietary changes should I make if I have Crohn's disease?

Answered by
Dr. Noushif M
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 13, 2018

Hi doctor,

I have Crohn’s disease. I would like to know how long it takes for the affected area of the small bowel to end up causing scarring (scar tissue). Do you feel if I have a lower number CRP on regular blood tests, that it should not lead to scarring, thickening or narrowing of the bowel? I have had a resection in the past and am now on 75 mg of Azathioprine after finding very minimal Crohn's after colonoscopy. Will getting on Azathioprine for minimal Crohn's help it from progressing?

Dr. Noushif M

General Surgery Medical Gastroenterology Surgical Gastroenterology


Welcome to

  • Azathioprine helps in controlling the disease and hence should be continued.
  • We cannot say how long it will take for scarring. CRP (C-reactive protein) helps in determining disease activity. It may not correlate with scarring. Not all inflammation results in scarring. Some may be mild and heal without much scarring.

For more information consult a medical gastroenterologist online -->

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Thank you doctor,

Do you believe diet and certain food and drinks can make the minimal Crohn's I have to spread or only just irritate it and still keep it to a minimum?

Dr. Noushif M

General Surgery Medical Gastroenterology Surgical Gastroenterology


Welcome back to

  • Diet, stress, lifestyle, etc., have a definite role in flaring up of Crohn's.
  • There is no specific diet which can be suggested for those having Crohn's, rather it is on an individual basis.
  1. The best thing what I can recommend is to identify the trigger foods.
  2. Never introduce more than one new food into your diet at a time.
  3. Certain foods like those with high-fiber are to be avoided when you have abdominal pain or bowel narrowing. 
  4. Fruit juices without pulp are permitted.
  5. Milk and milk products are to be used with caution as it can worsen diarrhea occasionally.
  6. Carbonated drinks, red meat, etc., have to be avoided.
  7. Always make sure to have a high-protein diet to avoid malnutrition. Though difficult to maintain a balance, it is very important especially during flares.
  8. Also, maintain good hydration daily to a target of 2.5 liters a day.
  • The trigger foods are known to create a flare. This may indirectly worsen the scarring, but not always.

Hope I have cleared your queries to your satisfaction. Please revert if you have any further queries.

For more information consult a medical gastroenterologist online -->

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