ULCERATIVE COLITIS & OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS
 
   

Ulcerative Colitis
and Omega-3 Fatty Acids

This section was compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C.
Send all comments or additions to:
  Frankp@chiro.org

If there are terms in these articles you don't understand, you can get a definition from the Merriam Webster Medical Dictionary. If you want information about a specific disease, you can access the Merck Manual. You can also search Pub Med for more abstracts on this, or any other health topic.

 
   

Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Ulcerative colitis (UC), a subcategory of inflammatory bowel disease, afflicts 1-2 million people in the United States, and many more worldwide. Crohn's disease, a subcategory of inflammatory bowel disease, contributes to significant morbidity, particularly in industrialized nations. It can affect people of any age, but is more commonly diagnosed in adolescence and young adulthood. Factors such as antibiotics, psychological and physical stress, and certain dietary components have been found to contribute to intestinal dysbiosis. If these causes can be eliminated or at least attenuated then treatments aimed at manipulating the microflora may be more successful.

   Part 1: Ulcerative Colitis–Pathophysiology and Conventional and Alternative Treatment Options
Alternative Medicine Review 2003 (Aug);   8 (3):   247–283 ~ FULL TEXT

While conventional treatments can be effective in maintaining remission and decreasing the length of active disease periods, the treatments are not without side effects, and a significant number of people suffering from UC fail to respond to even the strongest drugs. This article reviews potential unconventional treatments - transdermal nicotine, heparin, melatonin, DHEA, probiotics, fiber, dietary changes, botanicals, essential fatty acids, and other nutrients - that may be considered in conjunction with conventional approaches or as part of a comprehensive alternative treatment protocol.

   Part 2: Crohn's Disease–Pathophysiology and Conventional and Alternative Treatment Options
Alternative Medicine Review 2004 (Dec);   9 (4):   360–401 ~ FULL TEXT

Conventional medications are not curative but can contribute to resolution of acute flare-ups and help maintain remission. Because significant side effects are associated with many these medications, more natural interventions to help maintain remission should be considered. Associated nutrient deficiencies, dietary interventions, and nutrient and botanical supplementation are discussed.

The Causes of Intestinal Dysbiosis: A Review
Alternative Medicine Review 2004 (Jun);   9 (2):   180–197 ~ FULL TEXT

Alterations in the bowel flora and its activities are now believed to be contributing factors to many chronic and degenerative diseases. Irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis have all been linked to alterations in the intestinal microflora. The intestinal dysbiosis hypothesis suggests a number of factors associated with modern Western living have a detrimental impact on the microflora of the gastrointestinal tract. Factors such as antibiotics, psychological and physical stress, and certain dietary components have been found to contribute to intestinal dysbiosis. If these causes can be eliminated or at least attenuated then treatments aimed at manipulating the microflora may be more successful.

Nutrition in Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Current Opinion in Gastroenterology 1997;   13 (2):   140–145

Nutrition is an important aspect of the inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Components of the diet and the nutritional status of an individual patient may impact on IBD, and the diseases themselves may in turn impact on nutritional status. In this review we highlight recent advances in the field of nutrition and IBD.

Nutrition and Gastrointestinal Disease
Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology 1996;   31 (220):   52–59

On the other hand, dietary manipulation may be used to treat or prevent specific GI disorders such as coeliac disease, functional bowel disease, Crohn's disease and colonic neoplasia. The future development of nutria-pharmaceuticals is particularly attractive in view of their low cost and wide safety margins.

Influence of Nutrition in Ulcerative Colitis –– The Significance of
Nutritional Care in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Langenbecks Archiv fur Chirurgie 1995;   380 (1):   4–11

In prospective, randomized and controlled studies omega-3 fatty acids were found to be therapeutically useful. A reduction of the steroid doses needed is particularly important. Another therapeutic approach in distal UC is seen in the rectal administration of short chain fatty acids.

Fish Oil Fatty Acid Supplementation in Active Ulcerative Colitis:
A Double-blind, Placebo-controlled, Crossover Study

Am J Gastroenterol 1992 (Apr);   87 (4):   432–437

We conclude that fish oil dietary supplementation results in clinical improvement of active mild to moderate ulcerative colitis.

Nutritional Issues in Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease
J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr 1991 (May);   12 (4):   424–438

Malnutrition, characterized by weight loss, growth failure and micronutrient depletion, are prominent features of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in the pediatric age group. Preliminary studies on the use of dietary supplements of marine-oil-derived omega-3 fatty acids have indicated a beneficial effect in IBD patients.



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