Episode 16: Meghan Cary Brown, Crohn’s/Colitis Warrior and Patient Coach

Crohn's Fitness Food podcast cover with Meghan Cary Brown

This week’s guest is Meghan Cary Brown. At 27 years old, Meghan has lived 10 years with active disease, 13 years with indeterminate Crohn’s/Colitis, and 3 years with an ostomy. But IBD can’t stop her. In that same time, she’s also gotten married, graduated college, lived in four different states, travelled abroad, adopted a zoo of fur babies, and–most recently–landed her dream job as a Patient Coach.

As an 8th grader in Middle School, Meghan began having her first bouts of severe diarrhea and IBD symptoms, but doctors dismissed her as just being a nervous child. After about a year, she received a Crohn’s diagnosis and started down a path a trying various prescriptions from oral medications, Methotrexate injections, and biologics. Too sick to stay in school, she was home schooled for the next few years.

During the summer before her sophomore year, she finally responded to Remicade and went into remission. With her parents’ encouragement and being concerned about the possible side-effects of biologics, she went medication free and did well for about five years with the help of a homeopathic doctor. But, during her junior year of college, life and stress caught up and she was back in a Crohn’s flare.

Meghan shares what it was like to start back at square one and how she got through the struggles and kept a positive mindset. Then, after finding relief with Entivyo for a few years, in 2015, her doctor told her she had high grade dysplasia–a precancerous colon. Coming to terms with the fact that her best option was to remove her colon and rectum, she chose to have the surgery for a permanent ileostomy.

Looking back, she has no regrets and the ostomy has changed her life for the better. Listen as she shares what the recovery process was like–including the initial learning curve she battled with caring for her ostomy–and the importance of talking with someone who’s been through the same thing. Now serving as an advocate for IBD and as a patient coach for 11 Health, she shares what it has been like to not only help others, but how it has also helped herself heal. She encourages every IBD patient to reach out and talk with someone, to take a step back and not worry about the little things, and to take care of yourself every day.
.
.
.
.
Find Meghan on Instagram:
@emc_brown

Learn more about 11 Health and Patient Coaching:
https://www.instagram.com/patientcoaches/
http://www.11health.com/coach
https://soundcloud.com/11health

Why I enjoy fasting

Intermittent Fasting picture with empty bowl and bottled water

I tried fasting once, years ago, and quickly held up my white flag in surrender. Fasting was not for me. So what happened? Fast forward to today and most days you’ll find me fasting for 16 hours at a time; with the occasional 36-hour fast thrown in for good measure.

The main difference is that this time, my primary fuel source is fat. I also broke my Pavlovian response to eating in accordance with the clock and my mindset is different. Although I knew there were benefits to fasting when I first gave it a try, I didn’t know then just how important fasting actually is to keeping our bodies healthy.

So, why exactly would you want to fast? Continue reading “Why I enjoy fasting”

Episode 15: Natalie Suppes, IBD Health & Fitness Coach; Crohn’s since 2007

Natalie Suppes Interview

Today’s guest is Natalie Suppes, who was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 2007 and, after a 12-year flare, is finally in remission. She is a certified personal trainer and sport nutritionist who is passionate about helping women (especially those whose bodies are not functioning!) become the healthiest versions of themselves. Continue reading “Episode 15: Natalie Suppes, IBD Health & Fitness Coach; Crohn’s since 2007”

Rebounding and digestive health

rebounding

In my last post on rebounding, I shared some of the reasons why I love using a mini-trampoline as part of my daily workout and how it makes fitness fun. Today, I want to share why I love it for digestive health. Whether you have Crohn’s Disease or just suffer from occasional bloating, cramping, and other digestive issues, there are a few additional benefits that a rebounder can provide. It’s not an instant cure-all, but it is one more tool in the tool box! Continue reading “Rebounding and digestive health”

Episode 11: Will Jenkins, Crohn’s Warrior and Founder of Intestinal Fortitude

Will Jenkins Intestinal Fortitude

Today’s guest is Will Jenkins, founder of Intestinal Fortitude–supplements for IBD patients created by an IBD patient. Will was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease 7 years ago in his mid-30s. After a short time on prednisone and mesalamine, he began searching for a different way to treat his disease. His diagnosis led him down a path of research, natural healing, and eventually to developing his own supplement company focused entirely on gut health for those with Crohn’s and Colitis–including a probiotic with strains grown specifically for IBD. Continue reading “Episode 11: Will Jenkins, Crohn’s Warrior and Founder of Intestinal Fortitude”

Exercise, Gut Health, and IBD

Couch_Talk_with_Dr_Michael_Ruscio

For a long time, I’ve noticed that I feel stronger, have more energy, and enjoy better overall health when my workouts are consistent–and at least moderately intense (gotta get a sweat going!). I’ve also noticed that I have better management of my Crohn’s symptoms when my exercise program is on point.

Earlier this week, I was talking with Samantha Rynearson (@crohnicallyfabulous) for an upcoming Crohn’s Fitness Food podcast episode and one of the things we talked about was that she also feels better when incorporating some form of activity and exercise into her life. As we were talking, I said I didn’t actually know the mechanisms or why exercise helped my Crohn’s symptoms, and then I made a mental note to look into the reasoning further.

Then, as if right on cue, the very next day I stumbled upon a two-year old podcast episode, “Hormone to Gut Connection,” on Couch Talk with Dr. Anna Cabeca. In this episode, she interviewed Dr. Michael Ruscio, a functional medicine practitioner and author of Healthy Gut, Healthy You. Near the end of the interview, I found my golden nugget of information when they discussed exercise and why it most likely improves gut health as well as both IBD and IBS symptoms. Continue reading “Exercise, Gut Health, and IBD”

L-Glutamine and Crohn’s Disease

img_2361

L-glutamine is one supplement I’ve taken consistently for at least five years. But every time I take a supplement that I don’t notice a direct cause and effect relationship with, I always wonder how much it’s really helping. So I thought I’d go back and revisit why I started taking L-glutamine and re-evaluate how it might be helping in the management of my Crohn’s. Should it stay or should it go? Continue reading “L-Glutamine and Crohn’s Disease”