Sources and severity of self-reported food intolerance after ileal pouch-anal anastomosis

E. Steenhagen, N.M. de Roos, C.A. Bouwman, C.J.H.M. van Laarhoven, W.A. van Staveren

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8 Citations (Scopus)


Data on food intolerance after ileal pouch-anal anastomosis are scarce. The aim of this study was to identify foods causing intolerance and to determine the nature and severity of reported symptoms. Patients from the Dutch Crohn's and Ulcerative Colitis Association were mailed a survey on food intolerance; 105 (31% men) of 137 patients took part. They all reported intolerance to one or more foods. Common symptoms (scored from 0=absent to 10=severe), included diarrhea (mean score=5.8), fatigue (mean score=5.5), and thirst (mean score=4.6). Spicy foods, cabbage, and citrus fruits (or juice) were most likely to decrease stool consistency, increase stool frequency, or cause perianal irritation. Onions, cabbage, or leeks were reported by 28% of the patients to cause flatulence. The urge to defecate was stronger after a cooked meal (45% within 1/2 hour) than after sandwiches (15% within 1/2 hour). Foods reported to increase stool consistency were potato products, bread, and bananas. This study demonstrates that food intolerance is a common, albeit mild, problem after ileal pouch-anal anastomosis. Food and nutrition professionals should encourage patients to base their food choices on individual tolerance as long as no (patho-) physiological-based evidence to the contrary is available
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1459-1462
JournalJournal of the American Dietetic Association
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • quality-of-life
  • ulcerative-colitis
  • gastroenteritis


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