This post is sponsored by Chronic Illness Bloggers & Visbiome
IBD Awareness week is just around the corner, so what better time to talk about something intimately tied to our immune system – our gut and intestinal tract! If you have never heard of IBD Awareness week, it was started back in 2011 when the U.S. Senate passed Resolution 199: “A resolution supporting the goals and ideals of Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week, from December 1-7.”
The week aims to increase awareness to both Crohn’s and Colitis, two inflammatory bowel diseases that are painful, incurable and fall under the umbrella of invisible disease. According to CCFA.com – the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America – people with Ulcerative Colitis suffer from inflammation and disease in the large intestine (the colon), and those with Crohn’s can have the disease attack anywhere along the digestive tract.
Similar to Lupus, medications used to help manage these diseases can range from corticosteroids, immunosuppressant drugs such as Imuran or Methotrexate, antibiotics, pain relievers, etc. Surgery, supplements and dietary changes might also be recommended.
One supplement we hear about often today is probiotics. Probiotics are said to have a modulating effect, reducing inflammation in the gut and thereby helping to support and boost the immune system. Personally, I have been using probiotics for years and believe it has been a positive addition to my arsenal of supplementation. I’ve seen an increase in immune function and a heightened ability to fight off germs.
As part of the Chronic Illness Bloggers group, I was recently able to learn about a medical-grade, probiotic that was specifically created for those suffering from irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, pouchitis and more. The product is called Visbiome and it is a high potency probiotic medical food, containing 8 strains of live bacteria in concentrations of 450 billion bacteria per packet and 112.5 billion per capsule. The goal of the product is to help patients achieve microbial balance that typically cannot be achieved through diet modifications alone.
You can learn the specifics behind Visbiome on their website here, and also find out more regarding their prescription vs. nonprescription probiotic options. The capsules are ideal for vegetarians as they are made from vegetable cellulose and the product is gluten free. Even if you order the nonprescription strength Visbiome formula, keep in mind that it is a registered medical food and should always be used under the supervision of your doctor.
In the spirit of IBD Awareness Week, I also want to remind you to keep an eye out for our Spotlight Series on IBD in a few days! We scored an interview with an amazing IBD advocate…but I have to keep it under wraps for a few more days. I’m the worst at keeping a surprise a surprise!
Be well, LupusChicks…