Do You Need To Alter Your Diet? PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 04 July 2011 12:44
taken from http://thesociocapitalist.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/fresh-produce.jpgAccording to Chrissy Carroll, a registered dietitian and certified personal trainer with the American College of Sports Medicine, Scleroderma can present differently in each affected person, and diet recommendations are typically targeted toward specific symptoms.

She indicated that if you experience some of the symptoms that can arise - like gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD; dysmotility, a condition in which the muscles of the gastrointestinal tract do not work as they should; dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing; skin hardening; or Raynaud's Phenomenon - then you may need to avoid certain foods.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or GERD, occurs when acids from the stomach escape into the esophagus and cause a burning sensation. According to the article "Eating Well: Nutritional Needs in Scleroderma," written by registered dietitian Lisa Gloede, you should avoid alcohol, caffeine, spicy foods and fatty foods if you experience problems with GERD. Some individuals find that decreasing the consumption of acidic foods, like tomatoes, can improve acid reflux. Avoid eating any foods two to three hours prior to bedtime as lying down can exacerbate the reflux of acid into the esophagus.

Dysmotility and Dysphagia
You may experience difficulty swallowing with Scleroderma, termed dysphagia. The thickened and scarred tissue that Scleroderma causes can lead to a narrowed esophagus, which results in dysmotility, or the slowed movement of food. You may need to avoid very dry foods if these problems occur. You can dip foods like crackers and breads into liquids so they are easier to swallow. Depending on the severity of these problems, you may also need to avoid large pieces of meats or vegetables. You can liquefy them in a blender or puree these foods to make them easier to swallow and travel down the esophagus.

Skin Hardening and Raynaud's Phenomenon
Skin hardening is a hallmark symptom of Scleroderma. Raynaud's Phenomenon - in which restricted blood flow to the hands and feet causes cold, numbness or pain - is also very common, occurring in 90 percent of those with Scleroderma, according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Skin Diseases. Both of these conditions can make it difficult to prepare foods. You may have trouble cutting fresh fruits and vegetables, which could lead to an avoidance of these foods. Rather than removing these nutritional powerhouses from your diet, however, try to buy pre-cut fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables or ask a family member to help you prepare these foods.

Other Nutrition Concerns

Chrissy finally noted that if you have Scleroderma, you should maintain a proper intake of calories and consume a variety of nutrient-rich foods. Because the disease presents with a range of symptoms, you may or may not need to alter your current diet. If you have questions about your particular symptoms and their effects on your nutritional status, you should consult a doctor or a registered dietitian.

Source: Carroll, C. (2011), "Foods to Avoid With Scleroderma", Livestrong.com; original article can be viewed here.

 
More articles :

» A Positive Approach To Scleroderma

Several years ago, was asked the question, "What are your recommendations for treatment or living with a new diagnosis of ?" The following was his answer, which is still relevant today.As you know, there is no cure for Scleroderma and no...

» Important Information About Autoimmune Diseases

There are more than 100 known autoimmune disorders, including rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes, scleroderma, and lupus. Normally, your immune system is designed to protect your health. But in some people, the immune system creates...

» Dysexecutive Syndrome A Specific Pattern of Cognitive Impairment in Systemic Sclerosis

Systemic sclerosis (SSc), also called scleroderma, is a connective-tissue disorder characterized by obliterative microvascular lesions and diffuse interstitial fibrosis. SSc damages the small and medium-sized vessels serving the skin, joints...

» Capillary Regeneration in Scleroderma: Stem Cell Therapy Reverses Phenotype?

Jo N. Fleming, Richard A. Nash, D. O. McLeod, David F. Fiorentino, Howard M. Shulman, M. Kari Connolly, Jerry A. Molitor, GretchenHenstorf, Robert Lafyatis, David K. Pritchard, Lawrence D. Adams, Daniel E. Furst, Stephen M....

» New, Non-invasive Test May Help Diagnose Pulmonary Hypertension in Scleroderma

In patients with Systemic Sclerosis (SSc) – or – a condition called pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a leading cause of death. Having PH means the blood pressure between the heart and lungs is elevated.The Need for New Tests for PH in SScThe...

» PUVA Therapy In The Treatment of Localized Scleroderma

In localized , disease activity would tend to stop spontaneously over time. Treatment is important to reduce disabilities caused by the active phases of disease. According to , there are three treatments used in the treatment of localized...