3 things you can do to feel better right now

When you have UC, Crohn’s, or any other digestive disease, some days are just plain shitty, pun intended. On those days, you need to give yourself a free pass to do whatever the hell you need to do to feel better.

If you’ve been sick for a while, you’ll probably know what works best for you. If you’re newly diagnosed, it’s a little trial and error, but your body will guide you. Either way, here are three things that are guaranteed to help.

1. Take the day off

Most of us push through our flares and force ourselves to stick to our work and social commitments. This can really prolong your troubles. During my last flare, which lasted two months, I only took one day off work, and cancelled one social engagement. I’m not bragging. In fact, I think if I’d taken it easier and spent more time lying on my couch as I’d dreamed of doing (and not exercising vigorously!) I’d have recovered sooner.


On those days when you wake up feeling like you’ve been hit by a bus – if you’ve even managed to get any sleep due to all-night bathroom runs – give yourself that free pass. Call in sick, ask your partner to take care of the kids, and cancel those plans.

It’s important that your family and boss know that from time to time, you may need this kind of time-out. It doesn’t mean that you’re sitting your butt every second day. It means that you’re giving yourself the TLC you desperately need, when you desperately need it.

2. Eat YOUR comfort food

For people without digestive ailments, comfort food is mac and cheese, spaghetti bolognaise, ice cream and chocolate sauce. For us, it’s that one food that we know we can always eat without having symptoms.

Mine is rice. I know rice isn’t recommended on SCD, but it’s the only thing I can face when I’m flaring. I can’t imagine eating fruit or veg while in a flare, and meat is just too heavy. I have spent weeks living on just rice with lemon juice.

If you don’t know what your ‘flare’ food is, stick to extremely plain, dairy-free, gluten free foods. It’s also an excellent idea to eat meat broths if you can. They’re extremely nourishing and easy to digest.


3. Sleep

Sleep is one of the best medicines there is. Why do you think it is that when you’re feeling your worst, all you want to do is crawl under the blankets? Because your body knows what’s best for it – so don’t fight it. Climb into bed and get as much sleep as you can. Squeeze in those daytime naps too, if possible.

My dad, at 65, is one of the healthiest people I know (touch wood!), and my mom is convinced it’s because he gets so much sleep!


If you’re feeling like crap, don’t push yourself. Do as much or as little as your body can handle, and if your symptoms are out of control, contact your doctor immediately.

4 thoughts on “3 things you can do to feel better right now

  1. It sounds like you are rocking it!! Way to go. Glad to hear you are feeling really good for the most part. I’m sure it is sooo nice to have avocado in your diet now! I cannot WAIT for it.

    I fell of the wagon and cheated in a major way for like 3 or 4 days straight. We received some unexpected and rather stressful news, and I decided to cope by eating whatever the hell I wanted, all the time, nonstop. I had honestly kind of mentally given up on SCD and just resigned myself to feeling crappy again, but my husband actually encouraged me (quite strongly) to go back to it and stick with it for reals this time. (I was surprised because I had gotten the impression from him when I first started that he was pretty skeptical of it, and I didn’t realize he would be so supportive.)

    So with his encouragement, I am back on! Even after 2 days I feel so much better. I woke up this morning and didn’t feel bloated, even though I overate last night, which is amazing. I’m used to always waking up feeling bloated in the morning, a lot of times it’s like I can feel my dinner from the night before still inside me, as if it didn’t digest. Bleh.

    Honestly, you kind of helped me get back to SCD, too. I would have been really embarrassed to have to admit to you that I’d given up. Haha. 🙂

    I went ahead and moved onto phase 2, because there wasn’t anything else in phase 1 that I wanted to add in right now (I gave the spinach a shot but I forgot how much I detest spinach when it is cooked to death. I’ll wait a few phases until I can eat it raw, or barely wilted). I’ve been avoiding fruit thus far because I felt like they were giving me bloat, but I am dyyyyying for something sweet! I’m starving right now but the mere thought of meat or eggs for breakfast makes me want to vomit. I’m usually fine with it but right now the meat just feels like too much. I just really, really want a nice fruit puree. (I’m not a fan of bananas, unless they’re in banana bread, unfortunately).

    Anyway…that was long-winded, but I will continue waiting with bated breath for your posts! 🙂 Good luck!


  2. Heather! Been wondering where you were 🙂 It’s good to receive your update. I’m sorry to hear that you received bad news, and I can totally understand that you dealt with it the way you did. How awesome of your husband to be so supportive – it really shows that it’s so easy to give up on this if you do it alone. I credit my partner with a lot of the success of my journey. Your husband sounds like a fantastic support and exactly what you need right now.

    That’s so interesting about your bloating. I always feel totally fine (bloat-wise) in the mornings, but it steadily worsens through the day, so by the time I go to bed, it’s almost like I have a massive balloon in my belly. I can’t imagine how uncomfortable it must be to *wake up* feeling like that. It’s so awesome to hear that getting back on the diet has already started setting you right. I think it goes to show just how well it works.

    As for something sweet – you know I get it! Pity about the bananas. The apple puree didn’t work for me, but the pear was fine. Maybe give it a try? As for honey, I’ve found conflicting advice on when to introduce it. Some websites say don’t even touch it until you’ve been on the diet for a few months; others recommend it right at the start, even during intro. So if you’re feeling strong, perhaps consider it and just see how it goes? It’s so, so tough to overcome the desire for sugar. Honey might be a real help.

    I don’t know if this would be totally gross, but what about carrot puree sweetened with honey for breakfast? Hmmm, no eggs or meat for breakfast. On phase 2 you can also intro pineapple – why not give it a try? Or consider the avo. People say that avo with honey is heavenly, though I’ve never tried it. It would be a great breakfast. I still can’t do meat for breakfast, hence the boiled eggs EVERY day!

    Oh, and here’s the FAQ page I promised you (and totally forgot about): http://scdlifestylebook.com/download/SCD_Lifestyle_FAQ_Bonus.pdf

    I’m so impressed that you’re back on the horse. I can promise you that if I fell off it, I’d not be able to get back on. I’m very all-or-nothing, so for me, what you’ve done is hugely inspiring.

    Thanks SOO much for keeping me updated. We’re definitely in this together 🙂 x


  3. Thank you!! I ended up trying pineapple this morning (delicious!), and managed to choke down some chicken and scrambled eggs. 😉 I normally don’t mind the meat so much (I’m actually so glad we get to eat it on SCD because it gives me that sense of satiety that I don’t think I’d get from just veg) but I think that I just need to add more things in (I’ve been stuck with butternut squash and various meats and it’s getting old…) so I have some variety and don’t have to rely so heavily on meat each meal to feel full.

    Thank you so much for the FAQ page! I will be perusing it tonight. 😀


  4. I agree – the meat really does fill the void on SCD. I don’t know how vegetarians do it! Phase 2 offers lots of different kinds of veg besides the squash, thank goodness. I already have my mushrooms lined up for tomorrow! But as I said in my looooooong reply to your other post, maybe it’s time to ease up a bit and just eat SCD without doing the phases? Good luck for today. Whatever happens, you’re okay 🙂


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