Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is an umbrella term used for irritable bowel syndromes (IBS). These are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. We often see that People who suffer from any of these health issues or IBS tend to lose weight. Weight gain in general requires eating a lot of food, which might not suit these health conditions. So how can a person with colitis or IBS gain weight ? Here is a weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis patients in India).
What is IBD ?
There are two types of Inflammatory bowel diseases.
- Crohn’s disease – It is a chronic inflammatory disease of unknown cause that can inflame any portion of the digestive tract. It often results in diarrhoea, strictures (narrowing), fistulas (abnormal opening) or malabsorption.
- Ulcerative colitis – Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory disease of the colon, or large intestine, accompanied by bloody diarrhoea. This inflammation is superficial. Hence it does not result in fistulas.
These disorders cause chronic inflammation in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The GI tract is the area of the body where digestion and absorption of nutrients take place.
Normally, inflammation helps protect the body from harmful germs, damaged cells or irritants. But in IBD, the immune system reacts inappropriately leading to unwanted inflammation. Inflammation impairs the ability of affected GI organs to function properly.
Why does a person suffering from IBD becomes Under weight ?
- Undigested food that passes through the colon may cause diarrhoea and abdominal pain.
- Severe diarrhoea can cause dehydration, leading to nutrients and electrolytes losses.
- People with IBD often have a reduced appetite.This happens as a result of nausea, abdominal pain or altered taste sensation. This leads to significant weight loss and malnutrition. Hence make you underweight.
Weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS and ulcerative colitis patients in India)
Before we move on to weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis patients in India), we must see the nutritional requirements of these Individuals.
Nutritional requirements for IBD: How to plan a diet for IBD ?
Adequate Caloric Intake:
Meeting the body’s calorie demands is essential to prevent tissue wasting and weight loss caused by IBD. However, consuming adequate calories is challenging as loss of appetite is a symptom of IBD. Caloric needs may increase during times of stress. Including inflammation, fever and diarrhoea. If your weight begins to drop, try adding about 250 to 500 calories more per day.
Select the Right Grains:
Consume wheat, broken wheat, rice, oats, barley and others grains. People with IBD should avoid whole grains or grains with husks as it may increase the IBD symptoms. Consume easy to digest grains during the flare stage. Rice, oats, quinoa are a good option.
Read – Health benefits of Quinoa
Choose the Best Sources of Protein:
Animal proteins like fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy along with pulses and dals are recommended. During inflammation a high protein diet helps. Thoroughly cook the protein source and then consume to avoid any flatulence. Avoid bigger pulses like chana, rajma or whole urad, as it may induce flatulence. Using mung dal is better over using any other variety of dals.
Due to fat malabsorption during IBD, avoid foods like butter, margarine and cream. It causes diarrhoea and flatulence. These symptoms are more visible in individuals with inflammation in the small intestine or removal of majority of small intestines. Include omega 3 rich olive oil, walnuts, fish or flax seed to reduce the inflammation caused by IBD.
Eat a Variety of Vegetables and Fruits:
Tolerance for vegetables and fruits varies among people with IBD. Select vegetables and fruits that are easier to digest, such as potatoes, gourd vegetables, boiled carrots and beetroots, pumpkin etc. Remove the skin (the insoluble fiber part) and avoid the seeds. Consume cooked vegetables instead of raw vegetables. Avoid cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and broccoli as it causes flatulence.
- Drink Plenty of Fluids:
Drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water as per requirement. Sip on your beverage slowly rather than drinking fast. Also avoid using a straw. Drinking fast and using a straw increases air into the digestive system, which causes discomfort. Alcoholic and caffeinated drinks do not count as they dehydrate the body. With diarrhoea the water requirement increases with addition of electrolytes. Consult the doctor if the diarrhoea persists. Water, juices, soups, dals, low calorie sports drinks are all included in the fluids.
Extra care to be taken while selecting certain foods for weight gain diet chart for IBD :
Fiber can sometimes be problematic for people with acute IBD. Soluble fiber is more preferable than insoluble fiber. Fruits like banana, papaya, vegetables like gourd vegetables, cereals like quinoa, oats, daliya, psyllium are all rich in soluble fiber.
Some people with IBD may be sensitive to gluten and have gluten intolerance. Gluten is a protein found in grains including wheat, rye and barley products. These grains can cause abdominal bloating and diarrhoea after eating. It can be solved by avoiding any such foods that may cause these symptoms. Maintaining a food diary simplifies this process. Replace wheat with rice, maize or potato flour.
Lactose intolerance causes gas, bloating, cramping and diarrhoea within minutes of consuming milk, ice cream or any other dairy products. Avoid most dairy products instead curd or buttermilk is better option with lactose intolerance.
Weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis patients in India)
Here is a sample weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis patients in India). These food items are easily available in your household and this diet plan is absolutely easy to follow.
Sample diet menu: (Approximately 1800 – 2000 calories, 60 – 70 gms proteins)
Empty stomach: 1 glass lemon juice with 1 teaspoon soaked chia seeds
Breakfast: 2 – 3 Idlis + 1 cup Sambar + 1 glass masala Milk
OR Apple and oats porridge with dates. (Avoid sugar)
OR 2 Mung dal chilla with 1 bowl curd .
Mid-morning: 1 serving Date Banana custard (Avoid sugar)
OR 2 boiled eggs
OR 100 gms Paneer.
Lunch: 2 Chapatis OR 2 Rice Roti
+ 1 cup Pumpkin Vegetable
+ moong dal 1 cup
+ 1 cup Rice
+1 bowl curd with flax seeds powder
Mid-afternoon: 1 glass Buttermilk
OR 1 glass ragi kanji
Evening: 1 glass fruit smoothie with 2 tspn walnut powder
Mid-evening: 1 cup vegetable soup or chicken soup
Dinner: 1 cup oats, dal and vegetable khichdi
+ 1 cup cucumber raita
+ 1 cup mashed potato
Bed Time: 1 cup milk or buttermilk
+ 1 tsp psyllium husk
* Note – Every individual gets different symptoms. Hence , if there is any food item mentioned above that does not suit you , or was advised to avoid by your doctor, please skip that . or mention below in the comment so that we can give you a different option for it .
Protein powders allowed in Colitis and IBS
Here are some Protein Powders that a person with IBD (colitis and IBS ) can consume for weight gain.
- Ensure Original – Gluten free and suited for lactose intolerance patients, 8 gms protein
- Ensure Original therapeutic nutrition shake – Gluten free and suited for lactose
intolerance patients, 9 gms protein per serving. Instead of milk with protein
supplement consume therapeutic shake.
- 1 serving sofit soya milk – Replace milk with soy milk (contains 6.4 gms protein per
serving of 200 ml).
- Peptamen – Elemental proteins (contains 18.5 gms protein per 100 gms). Suitable for
severe lactose intolerance post intestinal surgery to remove a particular portion of
(P.S – This is not a paid post ).
List of foods to avoid in IBS:
- Caffeinated beverages – Coffee and tea in any form, Cola beverages, Green tea (Read the label to know if it is caffeine free).
- Highly spicy food
- Processed foods
- Artificial sweeteners
- Cruciferous vegetables like – broccoli and cauliflower
- Carbonated drinks and soft drinks
- Big pulses like rajma or chickpea.
Handy Tips to manage IBD symptoms:
- Start your day with either lemon juice or dry cracker to combat nausea.
- Follow a low residue diet to relieve abdominal pain and diarrhoea.
- Consume small frequent meals.
- Include calorie dense foods like fruit juices or smoothies to provide more nutrition in less amount of food.
- Use lots of nutritional toppings on foods like nuts, oilseeds, chia seeds, if tolerated etc. These foods increase the nutritional value of the recipe and provide additional calories. But if you have strictures avoid nuts, beans or high fiber foods.
- Restrict sugar intake in the diet. The sugar in the diet cause excess water in the intestines which results in watery stools.
- Restrict alcohol consumption.
Subscribe to our You tube channel for updates on health and informative videos. Subscribe Now.
IBD doesn’t need much of food restrictions. Just a correct food selection which does not aggravate the symptoms does the trick. Small frequent calorie dense meals help in weight gain post IBD flare. the above mentioned weight gain diet chart for IBD ( IBS, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis patients in India), will help you achieve a healthy weight.