How to Use a Food Diary to Help Manage Crohn’s Symptoms and Flares

Your diet doesn’t cause Crohn’s disease, and changing what you eat can’t cure the condition. But keeping a food diary can help you correlate your Crohn’s symptoms to the foods that you eat so that you can identify the worst offenders — and avoid them.

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that affects the digestive system. “Although any part of the GI tract can be affected, inflammation of the small intestine is the hallmark of Crohn’s disease, which leads to a reduced ability to break down foods and absorb nutrients,” explains Everyday Health nutritionist Kelly Kennedy, RD. The result? Severe GI discomfort, diarrhea, and malnourishment.

There’s no universal list of foods that trigger Crohn’s symptoms or one set Crohn’s diet to follow — you have to uncover your individual triggers and create your own personalized list. And a food diary is exactly the tool you.

What to Track in Your Food Diary

Keeping a food diary can help you pinpoint specific foods that exacerbate your Crohn’s symptoms. Here are some tips on what to record to help you gain better control over them:

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