Home > Uncategorized > IBD Pilot Study Using Diet based on SCD shows 100% Success Rate

IBD Pilot Study Using Diet based on SCD shows 100% Success Rate

It looks like the mainstream medical community may be finally realizing that diet is central to the cause and healing of IBD.  Last May, the folks at UMass led by Barbara Olendzki published a pilot test using a diet largely based on SCD to treat IBD. Here is a link to a pdf showing the study results, and I’ve copied the abstract below. I’m sure it will take alot more to completely turn things around, but this is a major step forward. Even though this study is small, I’d say a 100% success rate is pretty good!


And here is a link to the most recent SCD Lifestyle post and podcast interview of one of the researchers that conducted the study http://scdlifestyle.com/2012/02/umass-ibd-diet-study-sees-success/ Kudos to Steve Wright for putting this together!

Abstract

Background: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), which includes Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), are chronic non specific inflammatory conditions. Standard IBD treatment typically employs a combination of anti-inflammatory and immune suppressive medications; however, the pharmacological approach is not by itself curative. The Anti-Inflammatory Diet for IBD (IBD-AID), which is derived and augmented from The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), is a nutritional regimen that restricts the intake of complex carbohydrates such as refined sugar, gluten-based grains, and certain starches from the diet. These carbohydrates are thought to provide a substrate for pro-inflammatory bacteria. The second component of the diet involves the ingestion of pre- and probiotics to help restore an anti inflammatory environment.

Study Objective: To assess the efficacy and feasibility of the Anti –Inflammatory Diet (IBD-AID) intervention for the treatment of IBD.

Intervention: Patients were recruited from the UMMHC gastroenterology clinic upon referral from their gastroenterologist. They received individual instruction of the diet and its restrictions through 5 individual nutrition sessions over approximately a 6-10 month period. Support materials were provided. Cooking classes were also available to the patients.

Conclusion: This case series indicates the potential for the IBD-AID to be used as an adjunctive or alternative therapy for the treatment of IBD. Notably, 9 out of 11 patients were able to be managed without anti-TNF therapy, and 100% of the patients had their symptoms reduced. To make clear recommendations for its use in clinical practice, randomized trials are needed alongside strategies to improve acceptability and compliance with the IBD-AID.

Citation: Barbara C. Olendzki, Gioia Persuitte, Taryn Silverstein, Katherine Baldwin, David Cave, John K. Zawacki, Kanishka Bhattacharya, and Yunsheng Ma. “Pilot Testing a Novel Treatment for Inflammatory Bowel Disease” Clinical and Translational Science Research Retreat.. May. 2011. Available at: http://works.bepress.com/barbara_olendzki/46

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  1. Shelley Stewart
    January 13, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Its about time!!!!

  2. Karen
    January 13, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Thanks for posting the study. It’s very exciting.

  3. Rivi Peer-Tirosh
    January 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    I was newly diagnosed with crohns and want to thank you for your site,information and work.
    It is SSSSOOOOO helpful!!!!!!!
    I read the article about the GAPS diet and bought raw milk.The article calls for fermentation without boiling the milk.
    I would apriciate if you can comment
    Thanks again,
    Rivi Peer

    • January 13, 2012 at 2:41 pm

      The GAPS diet is great. One of the improvements that GAPS has over SCD is an intro version without dairy at all. And when you try to add it back, I would go slow. I have not tried fermenting raw milk without boiling, but it makes sense that boiling raw milk defeats the purpose of getting raw milk in the first place.

  4. Bethany Walton
    January 13, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    This makes me so incredibly happy! My 5 yr old daughter has recently been diagnosed w/ UC, and this article confirms what I just read in Disease Proof Your Child by Joel Fuhrman. I am very happy/hopefull that this WILL WORK!! Thx for sharing 🙂

    • January 13, 2012 at 3:47 pm

      Bethany, Sorry to hear about your daughters UC. This is not an easy disease and its just not fair on kids. But please be careful with Dr. Fuhrman. Although I completely agree that diet is central to the problem and critical for healing, I completely disagree with his approach. He completely misses the point that grains/legumes are the problem. And he has you avoiding meat! If I had to pick the most healing food it would be grass fed beef/bones/marrow. I would highly suggest you check out Robb Wolf – http://www.robbwolf.com and his autoimmune protocol instead. Good luck, and keep me posted!

    • January 16, 2012 at 12:52 pm

      I have Crohn’s, and I follow the SCD diet by Elaine Gotschall which is what the article refers to. I was sick for 8 years before I started this diet and ended up in the hospital. I got out, looked the diet up for myself, and I have now been following it for a year and 7 months. I have been med free 8 months! It truly works. I also buy some foods labeled organic and use organic non toxic cleaning products in my home now. Just making better choices all the time since I started the diet. 🙂

  5. Dexter
    January 13, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    @bethany I have assisted an elderly lady age 74 who has ulcerative collitis for 25 year and the doctors just say they can do nothing for her. They have essentially abandoned her. She would have BMs 6-8 times a day. And this for 25 years. I had her eliminate all grains, all sugar, all oils except coconut oil and MCT oil. Within two weeks she is feeling exceptionally well and vibrant after years and years of feeling sick all the time.

  6. January 13, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    How many pilot studies does it take to equal the credibility of a large scale study? There’s at least 3 or 4 pilot studies, every one of them shows strong benefits of SCD.

    • January 14, 2012 at 7:00 am

      Unfortunately, pilot studies do not meet the gold standard of being double blind and placebo controlled. In addition, they are too small to be statistically significant.

    • February 25, 2012 at 11:12 am

      The study, like the others, is far too small a number of patients tested to be significant.
      I agree it looks promising but have a look at some studies for biologic drugs, they seem amazing! I know from bitter experience, they are not. I am too ill to even be on a diet, so not sure how sc or any other diet could help!
      the study i just read in the pdf looks promising, like I said, I won’t be ripping my PEG out just yet – or see any future time when I can stop all the steroids and painkillers…oh and wearing nappies at 38 does get tedious!
      My point is, I will keep reading research and learning more but I see nothing even close to a solution or ‘cure’ as yet.

      • February 25, 2012 at 11:32 am

        You are right…this study is very small. However, when you look at this study, along with the research that has been done by Fasano and Cordain (see the links section or just listen to the Robb Wolf video), it all supports and fits into an overall framework that has about 3 million years of history. Framework Matters, and the framework of evolutionary biology explains virtually all that is going on with all autoimmune diseases. The latest publication from Fasano explains how removal of the environmental factors that cause leaky-gut can reverse/aid in healing of autoimmune diseases and the success of this small pilot…along with anecdotal reports from thousands that follow SCD/GAPS/Paleo diets, makes following these diets as part of your healing protocol just make sense. Please do read the research and ask questions. That’s how we all learn.

  7. January 13, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    Awesome!

  8. January 16, 2012 at 9:56 am

    I was diagnosed with crohns 3 yrs ago, last feb. I began the scd diet and saw a significant reduction in symptoms. My doctor at the va does not support the scd diet. He wanted to put me on humira which could cause fungal infections that could be fatal and or lymphoma cancer. I have a 4 yr old child so could not take that risk, no humira for me.

    • January 17, 2012 at 12:45 pm

      Good call. Humira put me in the hospital after I developed a dangerous reaction to it after 8 months of use. It worked for me for 6 months and then I developed antibodies to it, causing immunity. Docs wanted to pump me up full of Remicade and Imuran as a next step… NO THANKS! Specific Carb Diet has worked for me. 4 months later, I am med free and symptomless. 🙂 Success!

  9. January 17, 2012 at 12:43 pm

    Hi CrohnsDad. Ever since I started SCD, you have been around throughout the journey contributing knowledge that has helped me be successful. Just want to let you know that I’m 4 months into the diet, med free, and symptom free with totally normal BMs (solidity and frequency are ideal at the moment.) I am the healthiest I’ve been in years, all thanks to this diet. These results come as no surprise to me. Thank you for sharing knowledge and helping regular Joes like me tell their doctors who to cure IBD. 🙂

    • January 17, 2012 at 12:45 pm

      btw, it’s Jo from http://www.thescdexperiment.com

      • January 17, 2012 at 12:56 pm

        I’m thrilled with your success…and what you’ve done with your blog. Your story is inspiring! Hopefully others will be motivated to follow your lead.

  10. Alyse Giancola
    January 30, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Yay!!! I’m sooooo excited about this! KUDOS Dr.Z. and Barbara. I am so very happy and proud to have brought SCD to your attention 4 years ago…and have you stick to your promise of trying to help other patients. I know this study was not easy. Thank you all for keeping with it!!! I am 4 years off ALL MEDS… the only downside is that I miss seeing you Dr. Zawacki!!xoxoxox

    • January 30, 2012 at 11:13 am

      Alyse, Thank you for your efforts in pushing them to do this study!

  11. Lauren
    February 11, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Please comment on the probiotic ‘dark chocolate’ listed in the study as well as the addition of ‘oats’. Thank you.

    Lauren

  12. Joe
    March 30, 2012 at 4:15 am

    The evidence supporting carbohydrate consumption as a major factor in Crohn’s is indisputable, and likewise for IBS. And even more significant is that when CD sufferers in remission (and drug free) start consuming carbs again, symptoms inevitably return! Clearly, the carbs are being used somehow to induce inflammation in the gut. With this in mind and the fact that a bug called MAP is found in the guts of CD sufferers, I isolated a cow with Johne’s disease and feed it grass only (very low carb diet) instead of its normal high-carb cattle-feed. And remarkably, it was in clinical remission in about 2 months. I mentioned the experiment here: http://crohnsandibsbreakthrough.com/blog/the-experiment-that-will-shock-the-medical-community/

    • dibbledibble
      March 30, 2012 at 6:55 pm

      Where is the evidence that Crohn’s sufferers in remission have an ‘inevitable’ -as you put it- return of symptoms when they eat carbs? I know of no such studies.
      I have absolutely no faith in the MAP theory. It really would be ‘faith’ if I were to believe it.
      I appreciate your experiment but you are speculating when you say Crohn’s sufferers who eat carbs become ill…

  13. dibbledibble
    March 30, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    I appreciate your experiment but you just stated that Crohn’s patients who were n remission -inevitably?- had a return of their symptoms when they ate carbs.
    I know of no studies to confirm anything like this, can you point them out to me please?
    I also would say that the MAP theory is nothing more than faith, if it is believed, there is no evidence that I can see. Sorry, facts are facts. I have been on a carb free diet and it did not have the effect of helping my aggressive chronic Crohn’s.

    • March 30, 2012 at 7:34 pm

      MAP is an interesting theory worth keeping an eye on, but I’m not convinced yet either. As for the carb free diet…specific carbohydrates are one piece of the puzzle. There are also specific fats (omega 6) and specific proteins (prolamins & casein) that increase intestinal permeability and damage the gut lining. And just eliminating specific foods may not be enough to allow the body to heal. It still needs extra B12, extra Vitamin D (critical for tightening up those tight junctions). And of course, that’s why we have LDN.

      Let me know if you need help troubleshooting your plan.

      • Joe
        March 30, 2012 at 9:07 pm

        briefly covered LDN here: http://crohnsandibsbreakthrough.com/blog/what-do-prednisolone-budesonide-naltrexone-helminthic-therapy-and-thalidomide-have-in-common/ one of the reasons it may be effective in Crohn’s is because of its TNF blocking capabilities.

        crohnsdad :MAP is an interesting theory worth keeping an eye on, but I’m not convinced yet either. As for the carb free diet…specific carbohydrates are one piece of the puzzle. There are also specific fats (omega 6) and specific proteins (prolamins & casein) that increase intestinal permeability and damage the gut lining. And just eliminating specific foods may not be enough to allow the body to heal. It still needs extra B12, extra Vitamin D (critical for tightening up those tight junctions). And of course, that’s why we have LDN.
        Let me know if you need help troubleshooting your plan.

  14. Joe
    March 30, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    I stated once in remission in the context of this post – after following a VLCD. Since 2007, I have worked with dozens of Crohn’s sufferers on low carb diets. And we tested what happens when switching from a VLCD (very low carbohydrate diet) to a high-carbohydrate diet once in remission, symptoms returned in every case. Note from Eric’s SCD story (http://crohnsandibsbreakthrough.com/blog/erics-scd-story/) that he found the same.
    The latest study found MAP in 92% of Crohn’s sufferers. It’s not about faith, it’s about science.
    MAP may be controversial but we have some ground-breaking studies planned this year that will MAP into the limelight of Crohn’s research.

    dibbledibble :I appreciate your experiment but you just stated that Crohn’s patients who were n remission -inevitably?- had a return of their symptoms when they ate carbs.I know of no studies to confirm anything like this, can you point them out to me please?I also would say that the MAP theory is nothing more than faith, if it is believed, there is no evidence that I can see. Sorry, facts are facts. I have been on a carb free diet and it did not have the effect of helping my aggressive chronic Crohn’s.

  15. dibbledibble
    March 31, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Allow me to retract my comment about MAP theory above.
    It would appear that since my last good look at this theory, there has been a LOT more research and the site Joe posted is very enlightening!
    Apologies, I am now immersed in this and discovering things I had already put to bed years ago when the research wasn’t there. This really is exciting!
    Thank you,
    Paul

    • March 31, 2012 at 12:04 pm

      MAP or no MAP, the key issue is intestinal barrier function. And what drive intestinal barrier function is the interplay of genes and diet. Even if MAP plays a role, it really only does so because the genetic pre-disposition was there, there was a severe vitamin d deficiency combined with diets high in prolamins and omega 6 fats that damaged the gut lining and created leaky-gut. More research is always good though.

      • April 3, 2012 at 5:49 pm

        “Leaky-Gut” is not accepted by the mainstream medical community. However it is not at all quack/pseudoscience. There is real science being done in research centers and major universities in the US and all over the world on different aspects of the relationship between intestinal barrier function and disease. Pubmed is filled with studies on the foods and substances that either increase (worsen) or decrease (improve) intestinal permeability. Please do go to http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov and search on “intestinal permeability” and Gluten, Lectins, Omega 6 fatty acids, CLA, Zinc, s. boulardii, NSAIDS and more. And then read the Fasano study – Leaky-Gut & Autoimmunity
        https://crohnsdad.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/clin-rev-allerg-immunol-leaky-gutautoimmunity.pdf

        I can’t explain why the mainstream medical community ignores the research. Ignorance is tough to deal with.

  16. dibbledibble
    April 3, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    crohnsdad :
    …that damaged the gut lining and created leaky-gut. More research is always good though.

    Sorry but I just do not have an opinion on ‘leaky gut’ as it isn’t even recognised medically, the only places I see it mentioned are pseudoscientific sites, selling some remedy or another.

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:vytSuIodX8cJ:www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/fad.html+leaky+site:http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/fad.html&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=uk&client=firefox-a

    I’m not offering the above link as the absolute definitive resource to base an opinion on, it is just a little extra for you 🙂

  17. Tanya
    May 4, 2012 at 10:49 am

    Crohnsdad, you seem to have gathered a ton of really useful info, but it could be overwhelming for a newcomer to non-conventional approaches to Crohn’s or whatever digestive health issue one is trying to work on. I think if you wrote up a Getting-Started article, probably with some links to other posts you’ve got, that includes a high-level discussion of the basic premise of using diet (and supps) to improve the wide spectrum of digestion-related problems, it may be an easier way for people new to these concepts to get oriented.

    I know it may not be your purpose, and I’m sure it would take time, but it could make your website more user-friendly to a wider audience.

    • May 4, 2012 at 11:39 am

      Tanya, I think you have a good point. I need to get more organized here. Actually, the first post I did – The Core Strategy – is essentially what you are talking about. The problem is that it is now burried as an old post. I’ve added it as a link in the About section and I’ve also added it as a link.

      Thanks,

      Alan

  18. Bernardina Violante
    October 31, 2012 at 1:36 am

    when you have bad allergies, it is a good idea to have anti-inflammatory diet since it reduces allergies quite a lot. .

    Have a look at all of the helpful write-up on our own internet site
    http://www.healthmedicinelab.com/bed-bug-bites-pictures/

  19. November 13, 2012 at 11:20 am

    My prayers have been answered since finding the SCD Diet! I suffered with Chronic D and it was just about debilitating me. I started the intro, then moved into phase one after Day 5, as I was still having the same symptoms (in fact it got worse – day 10 was the worst day I’ve ever experienced), but on Day 11 everything changed. I am now starting my third week and I feel “normal” again. My life has been given back to me. Please try SCD and don’t give up hope. I thought on Day 10 that it wasn’t going to work for me but I kept going because I knew the success rate was so high. I’m so glad I continued, and will be SCD for life! Thanks to everyone who has blogged/posted/shared their experience and knowledge with this wonderful, life-saving, magnificent diet. I am forever grateful.

  1. July 29, 2012 at 3:13 pm

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