Interstitial cystitis (IC) inovlves pain discomfort or pressure in the pelvis attached to the bladder. Patients usually experience the persistent urge to go to the bathroom. Men women and children may have IC but women are the most affected groups. According Interstitial Cystitis Association perhaps 3-8 million women in the US will be living with the condition. Many people who have IC is forced to live with chronic severe pain. They liken the pain to be stabbed or cut with razors. Diet modification is one of the best ways for sufferers to find relief
Determining Acceptable Foods
The Simple Exclusion Diet can find out which foods are trigger foods. It works best if your body reacts to the food quickly and clearly. Start to completely avoid three foods A B and C for at least one week. Three weeks should be the maximum time. If IC symptoms subside during this period reintroduce foods one at a time. Start eating small amounts of food A and if symptoms worsen eat normal amounts rest of the week. If you notice symptoms return or get worse stop eating food A. The following week go through the same process with food B and then the food C. Write down reactions you have to each food. This will allow you to create a definitive list of foods to avoid.
The Empirical Elimination Diet is ideal if you suspect that foods cause health problems but you are not sure which foods are the problem. Make a list of foods that are known to pose problems for people with IC. Foods that commonly cause allergic problems in peanuts eggs milk tree nuts fish wheat and crustaceans. Citrus melons chocolate soy beans and corn also cause problems. People who have vulvodynia should also add high-oxalate foods such as green peppers eggplant wheat germ black pepper and citrus peels to their list of foods to avoid. Similarly IC patients with irritable bowel syndrome adding sorbitol high fructose corn syrup fructose and foods high in saturated fat to your food list. Stop eating all the food on the suspect list for a period of a week or so. Gradually begin to eat them again monitoring of symptoms.
Use nutrition labels when planning low-sodium meals. Many foods especially prepackaged meals contain much more sodium than you expect. Foods with a low sodium has less than 140 mg per serving. Food without sodium has less than 5 mg of sodium per serving. When on a low-sodium diet keep track of how much you eat and consume less than 2 000 mg or 2 grams of sodium per day. Foods that contain large amounts of sodium are ham eggs tuna cottage cheese and American cheese. The Cleveland Clinic has a list of sample sodium amounts and guidelines.
Cook with chicken broth or beef broth containing minor amounts of sodium and no monosodium glutamate (MSG). Most soups and broth has MSG but some brands such as Health Valley Hain and Campbell’s Healthy Request is MSG free. Broth can be used for much more than making soup. You can use it to bake mix pasta and when sizzling meat and vegetables.