By Dr. Keith Sheehan
October 23, 2019
Full disclosure–this might get a little graphic. But I only share my own story about how I beat Ulcerative Colitis naturally because I found that many of my patients can identify with what I went through.
Plus, it’s a great story of what food sensitivities and over-consumption of carbohydrates can do to you.
How It Started
When I was 17, an event happened to me that was both a blessing and a curse. Under a lot of stress, I went to the bathroom and saw blood in my stool. Correction, I saw only blood, no stool. Honestly, I wondered if I was dying. I also had a fever of 101. When I felt a little better, I went to the medical doctor. I was scheduled for a colonoscopy, and the doctor confirmed my diagnosis: ulcerative colitis.
This was my introduction to the current allopathic medical system used in most of our country, and how it treats autoimmune disease. This in turn ultimately led me to my path of alternative medicine that more and more people are recognizing.
My Experience With Conventional Solutions
When I first went to the medical doctor, they made the diagnosis of ulcerative colitis and scheduled me for a colonoscopy, which confirmed the diagnosis. They prescribed steroid treatments, to calm the area down, and prescribed what they described as a “bland, low fiber diet”, in order to not aggravate my colon. (By the way, later I found that this was the exact wrong advice for me.) The main thing they said to avoid was fiber, so I should avoid vegetables and whole grains, in favor of processed carbohydrates like white bread.
I followed this diet to a T, and along with the cortisone treatments, I felt slightly better, even though periodically I would still feel sharp pains in my stomach and experience exacerbations. What I didn’t know was that by adhering to this diet, even though it gave some slight short-term relief, it weakened my digestive tract and set the stage for what was to come next.
The medical doctors told me that there was no cure for ulcerative colitis, and hopefully, it would stay away.
Truthfully, I lived in fear that my ulcerative colitis would come back and that I would become disabled.
Additional Health Factors
Then when I was in college, at the age of 21, I got salmonellosis while vacationing in Mexico. Even though this is a horrible experience, in a way, it was actually a blessing. Let me explain.
I’ve written about it many times, but after my bout with salmonella poisoning, I developed severe left low back pain. This happened before I went to chiropractic school. Once I was in chiropractic school, sometimes getting adjusted up to three times a day, the low back pain kept increasing for the next 2 1/2 years.
Eventually, I was crippled (the Oswestry low back pain evaluation told me so). I had to carry a special chair everywhere because I could not sit in normal chairs. During my classes, I had to stand a lot of the time because even with my special chair, sitting aggravated my back. I also couldn’t sleep right because of the pain.
So at 24, I was crippled. I went to see medical doctors, chiropractors, and physical therapists; no one could help me. During this time I gained about 10 inches on my waist while losing about 10 pounds.
Finding The Solution
In the spring of 1996, I gave up trying to fix my pain and focused on trying to lose the girth that I had added to my waist. I read a book called “The Zone” by Dr. Barry Sears. He was the first person I heard say that we are eating too many carbohydrates, especially refined carbohydrates, and we should cut them down. It was also during this time that I noticed that the foods that I was eating, such as rice, beans, macaroni, bread, and cereal, seemed to bother my digestive tract. So I cut them out. What was left was protein, fruits, and nuts (my digestive tract was so destroyed from the salmonella, poor diet prescribed by the medical doctors, and ulcerative colitis, that I could eat no vegetables whatsoever—not even cooked ones.)
Guess what—within a week, my back pain was almost completely gone! Within two months, I had lost about 40 pounds of fat, and 10 inches off my waist!
I had found the reason why I felt like such garbage and was in so much pain.
It was my diet!
What Did This Mean for Me?
All right, so what’s the purpose of this long story? Is it to gross you out and scare you from going to Mexico? No, absolutely not! The point is that I’m just like you, and I’ve had my share of health problems. And like most you, my problems were due to eating a diet that was wrong for my body.
My story also shows the two most important things when dealing with diet; cutting out food sensitivities, and cutting down refined carbohydrates, i.e., sugar. You see, I noticed that my digestive tract didn’t work so well when I ate grains, processed grains, and sugar. In other words, I identified my food sensitivities instinctively and cut them out. Also, in doing that, I also automatically cut down the number of carbohydrates, especially refined carbohydrates, also known as sugar, resulting in rapid weight loss and fat loss.
Cutting out food sensitivities, and cutting way back on carbohydrates, especially sugar, also rebooted my immune system, and healed my gut finally, ending my back pain.
My ulcerative colitis eventually went into total remission as well, but that didn’t happen right away. I had to take a few more steps into the Nutritional Healing World. More on that another time.
What Does This Mean for You?
So, you are probably wondering, can you do this as well? And the answer is, yes! Click on this link to view the Page Fundamental Food Plan. Start with the Page Fundamental Food Plan Phase 1 ff you have blood sugar problems, as evaluated by your HA1C being over 5.5 on blood testing. However, if your HA1C is below 5.5, you can start with the Page Fundamental Food Plan phase 2. If you don’t know which one to do, just start with phase 1, and when you get down to your desired weight, switch to the page diet phase 2. Doing either one of these diets will help you identify which foods bother you, and how many carbohydrates you can tolerate.
This food plan will go far in helping many people with their health NATURALLY—but only if you DO it! For those who would like a personalized approach, or who are dealing with a specific problem that requires a closer look, consider our Nutrition Response Testing or Functional Medicine Programs.
Yours in Health,