Traveling with IBD III: The AirBnB

Over the Holidays, I traveled to Germany again, this time with Lee. We visited my family for a week, and then met up with friends from London in Munich for five days. The four of us rented an apartment using AirBnB. I was hesitant at first- aside from the fact that I feel uneasy about the “sharing economy”, I was also worried as an IBD patient. Would we find a place where I didn’t have to share the bathroom withRead more

It’s Tuesday, and I am tired…

Even though I am a lapsed, non-practicing Catholic, there are certain ways that this belief system has shaped the way I think. I associate my grandfather with Catholicism, and how his fierce beliefs in justice often brought him pretty close to liberation theology. The whole flipping tables and whipping people thing that Jesus did? Tots okay in my grandpa’s book. If there was an injustice, he called it out, and it was a way to articulate his catholic identity toRead more

The ABC of IBD: “A” is for Anemia

Many people with IBD have a hard time conveying that their disease is more than just “a bathroom disease” (whatever that may mean). While digestion and its products certainly do play a big part, they are a fraction of everything that happens to you in the grand scheme of things. So, my newest project is to go through the alphabet and explain symptoms, medications, procedures- things that have to do with IBD. I’ll give you a brief definition and tellRead more

I heart colonoscopies- Tips and advice

There is no way around it: Colonoscopies are important. Even if you are not a Crohnie, don’t smoke, don’t have a family history of colon cancers, if you are older than fifty, you should have one every five years. A 2013 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found out that you can lower your risk of developing colo-rectal cancer by 40% through colonoscopies. How? Cancer doesn’t come overnight, and pre-cancerous cells or polyps can be found via colonoscopies.Read more

Take Steps 2015, the good, the bad and opportunities for next year

Yesterday, I went to Take Steps2015- the annual fundraising walk that the local chapters of the CCFA. The Northwest Chapter of the US is mainly located in Seattle, the Portland Chapter is much smaller. When I went to the Crohn’s and Colitis Support group meeting in April however, a representative of Take Steps was there, advertising the event. So, a good month later, my better half and I put on our walking shoes and went to the event. I haveRead more

Crohn’s, Weight and Body Image (and a dash of feminism, for good measure)

I have always had weight fluctuations. Spoiler alert: All of them had to do with Prednisone…. In the eighties, there were not a lot of options to treat Crohns- steroids and Azulfidine was it. When I was about ten, Imuran came on the market. It helped, but usually only in conjunction with….drumroll… prednisone. So over the years, I’ve had my fair share of steroids, tapering etc. With every steroid cycle, I gained weight. You see, I was HUNGRY. And thenRead more

Things I can eat: Winter Soup

I love soups. I didn’t always, because I associated them with sickness and hospitals. Then I realized that I could stop pretending, an try to eat something that can stay with me. I love making broths with marrow bones, but I also like thicker soups. This is one of my new favorites, originally called Winter White Velvet Soup, but I call it simply Winter Soup (coz I am lazy and un-fancy). It allows me to eat things I usually haveRead more

Diets and Superfood Fads

If I hate something with a passion, then it’s all these diet fads that show up and supposedly cure everything from ingrown toenails to cancer and of course Crohn’s and Colitis. I like it even better, if they are advertised by people who claim to have suffered from IBD, and then “cured” themselves by “eating right.”  Usually, these people had Crohn’s for less than five years. I wish them well- because their world is going to crumble when they haveRead more