I got an awesome question via email the other day:
In the UK we are told it’s a permanent thing (UC). I changed everything around diet, relationships, even countries and I am healthy than before. I do not want to think I am in ‘remission’ I want to feel I am cured. Med free and symptom free for a year. Do you feel at a certain point one can feel ‘done’? – C.R.
I love the wording of the question because I recently came to a point in my healing journey were I was ‘done’.
However, I do not consider myself cured. With Crohn’s, the damage and the scarring that came with it, I don’t know if I’ll ever be cured. Because of how I have restructured my lifestyle into a healthstyle, and how I’ve changed my mindset, I no longer have fear of my Crohn’s. When I get the rare symptom of loose stool, it doesn’t even last a full day and I’m back to normal the next day. Crohn’s is a minor inconvenience for me.
I started my healing journey in 2004 with the SCD. Since then I’ve lost count of all the different treatments I’ve tried. I’ve traveled all over North America to talk with other empowered patients for additional healing tools. I’ve read many books and research papers.
The healing journey has been exhausting, expensive, and socially isolating at times. I’ve grown tired of trying to achieve absolute perfection in bowel health. Eventually, I realized I was chasing something that didn’t exist. Even healthy people get the dreaded D once in a while.
At this point, I’m done. I have a regimen that works for me and I’m able to lead the life I want. I’ll probably live with the Crohn’s diagnosis forever, and I’m totally OK with that.
At the end of the day, I don’t give a fuck about labels slapped onto my medical records by a doctor. I also don’t feel I have anything to prove to others on whether or not I’ve healed from Crohn’s. I just care that I have a high quality of life, enjoying as much of it as possible.
That’s my perspective, but C.R., you are looking for a cure, so the question is, can people cure themselves of ulcerative colitis? I believe so. Dr. Thomas Borody, a pioneer in the use of human microbiota transplants for ulcerative colitis patients in Australia wrote in a research paper that some of his patients have had durable remission for 10+ years. He asked the question, at which point do we stop counting years and say the patient is cured?
Some have claimed to be cured through diets like SCD or healing protocols like GAPS, while others need additional healing tools like low-dose naltrexone, cannabis, or human microbiota transplants mentioned above.
I believe ulcerative colitis can be reversed as long as you know your personal causative factors and you use the right healing tools to remove and heal the causative factors.
In your email you said you are medication and symptom free after a year. That’s excellent news for you and shows you are committed to this approach. Just know that the natural approach is not a quick fix. It may be several more years before you feel confident you have reached your goal of being cured.
But as you progress on your healing journey, be sure to pause, step back, and reevaluate if a full cure is even necessary. You might end up one day deciding that you are able to live the life you want without a full cure, and you are able to be at peace, and consider yourself ‘done’ on your healing journey.