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The SCDiet

In order to make the theory behind the SCDiet very sensible, I will use different scientifically conducted studies. I do understand that the medical world won't accept the findings below, but I hope you will be able to benefit from the information below. Please remember: To regain your health, you need to keep an open mind:

  1. The elemental diet works !
    The elemental diet is a restrictive diet that very successfully heals the intestines of a Crohn's patient. Very often the patient is in remission within a week. Remission means: Being free of symptoms.
  2. The elemental diet has been shown to work in many scientifically conducted studies.
    The first studies date from the seventies. Don't you think it's very odd your physician didn't inform you about this diet ?
    These studies even show that the elementary diet is more effective in treating Crohn's disease than prednison.
  3. Het elemental diet is very much alike the SCDiet
    Het elemental diet is in fact a more restrictive version of the SCDiet. The SCDiet only restricts the consumption of non-elemental carbohydrates, while the elemental diet also restricts the consumption of non-elemental fats and proteins.
    The SCDiet only allows one type of carbohydrates: The monosaccharides. The monosaccharides consist of one sugar-buildingblock, while disaccharides and polysaccharides consist respectively out of two or many (often 1000 and more) sugar-buildingblocks (saccharide molecules). The elemental diet is the same, but it also restricts proteins, in that you can only eat the elemental parts of the proteins: The amino acids. The same for the fats: Only the short-chain fats are allowed.
    In the elemental diet only elemental (non-dividable / predigested) foods are allowed.
  4. The intestines are not responsible for digesting (splitting, ie making more elemental) of fats and proteins; Only for the carbohydrates
    When we take a close look the process of digestion, we discover that only one of the three macro-nutrients (carbohydrates, fats and proteins) needs to be digested in the small intestines, namely the carohydrates. The fats and proteins and the polysaccharides are already digested when they come in contact with the small intestines. The juices of the stomach and the juices of the pancreas have already taken care of this. The other carbohydrates (the disaccharides), on the other hand, need to be digested by the enzymes that are produced by the cells in the small intestines. The disaccharides (lactose, maltose, sucrose) are split into more elemental carbohydrates, the monosaccharides (galactose, glucose, fructose).
  5. Te intestines are inflamed
    The intestines of a Crohn's patient are inflamed and don't function properly anymore. It seems very logical to try and alleviate the workload of the intestines. The same as when one's shoulder is inflamed: You won't be playing tennis for a while. How can we alleviate the burdon of the intestines ? Let's first review what is the primary function of the small intestines: Digestion of carbohydrates and absorbtion of elemental foods. The absorbtion of the elemental foods can't be alleviated, because one needs the energy and life's building blocks to stay alive. The digestion, however, we can alleviate a lot by taking simple measures. We know that the cells of the small intestines need to produce the enzymes for proper digestion of the disaccharides carbohydrates. An inflammated intestine can't produce enough enzymes. The resolution: Stop eating the disaccharides and the foods that eventually turn into disaccharides. The latter of which are the starches. By doing this, the intestines workload is decreased significantly and therefore it can start to heal. Especially when we consider the fact that when we continue to eat the disaccharides, the undigested disaccharides stay in the intestines and are being eaten by bad bacteria. We can still eat the monosaccharides (fruitsugars and honey) because these can directly be absorbed by the intestines without digestion (they are in fact already digested by the enzymes in the fruit or the honey).
  6. To alleviate the workload of the intestines, one should eat _only_ specific groups of carbohydrates.
    This means: No disaccharides and no polysaccharides. Polysaccharides are converted into disaccharides by the juices of the pancreas, and are in fact disaccharides in disguise. The only allowed group of carbohydrates is the monosaccharides. Monosaccharides are found in fruits and in honey. Although many vegetables and nuts contain small amounts of disaccharides or polysaccharides (starches), these are also allowed (we will learn that the starches of vegetables are in fact different from the starches found in starchy foods like grains).
    We started with the elemental diet at step 1 and now we've made it less restrictive. We can make it less restrictive because we know that the digestion of fats and proteins does not deteriorate when the intestines are inflamed. Where does that leave us ?
    A diet which forces us to eat only the elemental carbohydrates, while at the same time there is no restriction of the consumption of fats and proteins. We now know they don't cause any problems.
    Summary: Carbohydrates: _Only_ monosaccharides are allowed; Proteins: All are allowed; Fats: All are allowed

These scientific studies show how good the the elemental diet works in real life:

1990: Ten years of experience with the elemental diet: 85% in remission within a week

1991: Elemental diet heals the intestines. Permeability of the intestines decreases significantly; 80% in remission within a week

1993: Elemental diet and prednison compared: Diet as effective as predison

1995: Comparison of the elemental diet and prednison: Elemental diet significantly better than prednison

1998: Elemental diet als very successfull in treating inflamed colitis and better than 5-ASA alone

What to conclude after reading these studies
When we read all these studies, we can conclude that:
Eighty percent (80%) of the more than 200 patients (rats excluded) reacted very successfull to the elemental diet. What's even more remarkable is the fact that the diet improves health even better than prednison. Note: Prednison is known to cause many side effects and should be regarded as much less safe than the elemental diet. The bloodworks and growth figures of the tested children show that the elemental diet improves both significantly, while prednison doesn't improve neither.

After being on the diet for a week, most patients are free of symptoms (in remission). After four weeks the blood works show significant improvement (as did mine), which proofs that the inflammation is disappearing. It also shows that the red bloodcells / hemoglobin count and size increases significantly.
Instead of swallowing prednison and taking many risks of complications and side effects, one should ask the physician to prescribe the elemental diet. Your local pharmacy should carry it on stock. I think you'll have to print out this article and the studies above, because the studies are too recent to be known by your physician. Please tell him that there is no risk whatsoever, while the prednison treatment involves many risks.

The studies also show that when one stops using the elemental diet, it won't take that long before the symptoms start to reappear. This is because it takes a very long time for the intestines to heal. Besides that, I think the modern diet contains way too many carbohydrates. Over time the vicious cycle is introduced again and the problems start from the beginning (Read about the Vicious Cycle).

The SCDiet is the answer
As the SCDiet is less restrictive, but accomplishes exactly the same (the success rates and healing curves of a comparable diet*1 are identical to the ones as published in the studies above), it's a much better alternative than the elemental diet. The elemental diet tastes really bad. It's a chemically processed food. However, one should keep in mind that once in a while it might come in handy. The tubes that contain the liquid elemental diet can come in handy when you're traveling and there is no "SCD legal" food available.

The SCDiet forbids the consumption of all grains, potatoes, corn and rice. This seems to be a big problem for many people: No more bread ! However, when one reads the fantastic book "Breaking the Vicious Cycle", written by the SCD-founder Elaine Gottschall, one shall see that there are many, very appetitable alternatives. The banana muffins made with almond flour are very nice. The almondbread is also very good. In the end, exerience learns that while you think the SCDiet is very restrictive, you eventually come up with a diet with more variation. The diet you're eating right now seems to be very diverse, but when you check it, you see that you're eating the same bread, the same potatoes and the same spaghetti every day. With the SCDiet you will get to know all different types of fruits, vegetables, meats, nuts and cheeses. Check out the recipes. Also check www.scdiet.org, SCDiet discussion groups and www.healingcrow.com. Be sure to also read chapter seven*1 of Dr. Lutz's book: Life without Bread.

Notes on Dr. Lutz's Life without Bread
Dr. Lutz's treatment consists of decreasing the net amount of carbohydrates to about two slices of bread per day. After reading Dr. Lutz's book, it becomes appararent that his approach does work, but the time to heal is longer than that of the SCDiet. That's because the SCDiet successfully breaks the vicious cycle within weeks/months. The SCDiet forbids specific types of carbohydrates. This is much more effective than leaving a small amount of undigested/non-elemental carbohydrates in the diet, as Dr. Lutz prescribes. Many people, who do not heal on Dr. Lutz's diet, do still heal on the SCDiet.

SCDiet studies
The medical community wants to see scientific, placebo controlled studies in which a large amount of people are involved. Alas, it's very difficult to construct a study that proofs a diet. That's because the people who participate in the study are human beings. They are not zombies. With non-thinking zombies it would be a lot easier, as they wouldn't be aware of the things they eat (placebo effect) and they won't be cheating (eating non-SCD compliant cookies).
One study has been performed. The results show it works very well. The medical community doesn't acknowledge it, because the number of participants is too low. Read the study here: NUTRITIONAL THERAPY FOR CROHN'S DISEASE.



Please note: The information on this website is not a recommendation for treatment. Anyone reading it should consult his/her physician before considering treatment. The author and publisher can't be held responsible for anything. Use on your own risk.
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