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02-25-2011, 10:35 AM   #1
RN4ME
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Sunlight

I would like to know how many people here have seen an effect whether positive or negative in relation to exposure to sunlight.

My crohns onset began in October while i was station in Fairbanks Alaska---months of darkness--- I am in Ga now and have found that when i am having a particularly bad crohns day i can lay out in the sun and feel 1000's of times better(not spiritually necessarily but physically too).

You see our bodies use sunlight to produce Vitamin D. Its pretty much the only way we get it. Vitamin D is used to process other vitamins and minerals our body needs particularly in our intestines/ liver/ and kidneys. I firmly believe that Vitamin D plays a role in crohns whether it be in treatment or in the onset of the disease. I dont think it necessarily is a cause or cure but its involved.

My GI specialists and one of my professors were doubtful at first but after my explanation they see a valid argument. The problem is that no one will profit off this because they cant charge for Sunlight therefore they probably wont bother doing research on this theory.

Please...i know this may sound corny but i strongly believe there is a correlation between the two. So if you have experienced anything similar to me or even contradictory to this let me know. I think it at the very least is worth a try. If nothing else a nice tan and a smile on your warm face is still a win in my book.

My advice...go outside<---a must..throw on some sunscreen and catch some warm rays and let me know what yall think...also what conditions you found yourself in when your crohns began.........we all have to have something in common we just need to find out what it is!

Last edited by RN4ME; 02-25-2011 at 11:45 AM.
02-25-2011, 10:46 AM   #2
Crohn's 35
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Yes you are right!! And most doctors dont get that. We have an amazing guy on this forum that taught me (Dan Bergy) that it is important and takes Vitamin D3 and others and calcium. Alot of new crohnies have reported they had low Vitamin D. My husband works in the mines where he doesnt get much sunlight and in a remote area and at times they only have a few hours of sunlight, Northern Ontario. I make him take Vitamin D now and seems to be helping. I will get Dan to see this post and make a comment. Good call!
02-25-2011, 11:25 AM   #3
DMS
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My son's Gi approached us at his last appointment (just last Tuesday of this week) to participate in a Vitamin D study that he is a big part of. My son doesn't qualify because he's been taking Vit D all winter (thanks in part to the info I get on this forum), but it's very nice to see the Dr's participate and recommend Vitamin D.

BTW his Crohn's started in January, by March he was very sick, and was officially diagnosed in July (all 2009).

Good post RN4Me
02-25-2011, 12:09 PM   #4
AndiGirl
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Sunlight can do wonderful things for health. I know that those of us in the Northern Hemisphere are probably chronically vitamin D deficient. The sun and heat are supposed to negatively affect some other autoimmune diseases. My sister's mother-in-law is from Missouri. They can get plenty of sunlight and heat there. She has MS and does flare-up from the heat. To make things worse, they decided to vacation in Mexico (don't ask me why). She was hospitalized shortly after her return. As for Crohns sunlight may help some. I'm sure it helps a lot with the attitude and vitamin D.
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02-25-2011, 01:04 PM   #5
supercellbaebe
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Sunlight, wow, there are a whole myriad of reasons as to why that is beneficial to health. Not just the obvious, which is more vitamin D.

Sunlight encourages folks to get outside in the fresh air, doing exercise. In the Winter when folks get stuck indoors they end up breathing in dry air, which causes the nasal passages to get blocked and dry. This does actually lead to the brain getting much less oxygen. This causes a huge range of health problems. Exercise also increases oxygen to the brain, especially if done outside in the fresh air.

Sunlight also increases in the summer as there are more hours of daylight. This gives you more time to get out and about breathing properly, instead of being cooped up inside.

It may seem an indirect link to sunlight, but it fits! Here's a link I found on the subject of the importance of breathing, if you're interested:

http://www.holisticonline.com/yoga/h...importance.htm

Of course there are a million other reasons why sunlight is healing, you could write an encyclopedia on it I think!
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02-25-2011, 01:16 PM   #6
Cookie
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Add me to the "I need Sunlight" club. I have always felt that I suffered from a bit of the seasonal affective disorder thing, but these past two years it has been very noticeable for me. Every January I find myself sitting at my desk, staring at me computer screen with no ability to concentrate. Also, trouble waking up in the morning and no energy. I recognize that these are signs of depression. But as soon as the days start to get longer, I force myself outside (even when it's cold) and I start to notice a difference almost immediately. And it doesn't just have to do with exercise, because I run on my treadmill or practice yoga daily. I think next year I might try to buy one of those artificial sunlight lamps. Does anyone have any experience with these? I know Costco has one for under $100, which is what I was thinking of buying.
02-25-2011, 02:37 PM   #7
Claire617
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Ah I love the sun and rarely ever see it which is very depressing! I saw something about peoples moods being affected by the weather and I thought what a load of rubbish, but it is so true! I certainly plan on emigrating in the future so any medical gains gives it a huge thumbs up from me. I use a sun bed once a month for 6 minutes and I'm always in such a positive mood after you can see how people can over-use them
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02-25-2011, 02:49 PM   #8
supercellbaebe
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I am very sorry to hear you suffer from SAD Cookie. I have a friend who gets that, it is very very debilitating, no body really know what causes it I don't think, but loads of folks get it.

I think I explained myself very badly in my previous post and have given the wrong idea. I know exercise can't help SAD, its as pointless as taking a sugar pill, on its own. Its the oxygen getting to the brain that helps with SAD. Exercise makes you breath deeper, thus increasing oxygen to the brain, but if you do Pranayama or deep breathing, you get the same effect without exercising.

People can still exercise, but be breathing very shallow, which would do very little to help with SAD.

But breathing properly is something so few people actually think about doing, and once you do it it can totally transform your life, literally.

I'm sorry for not explaining myself properly before,

xxx

Last edited by supercellbaebe; 02-25-2011 at 02:51 PM.
02-25-2011, 04:49 PM   #9
Cookie
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No worries, Supercell. In all honesty, I wasn't really referring to your post, but to the general notion that lack of sunshine=lack of exercise=bad (which I agree is part of it, but I believe it to be much more). And I agree with you about the breathing. I practice yoga regularly and am very familiar with pranayama. I don't think the benefits of breathing awareness can be overstated. I certainly hope it didn't sound as if I am attacking you. In fact, I have read many of your posts, and I'm pretty sure we are on the same page
02-25-2011, 07:50 PM   #10
RN4ME
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Well thank you all for your thoughts...i am encouraged by the numbers of people here that are from Canada and other cold areas...I think that alone says loads towards validating my theory.

DMS I am glad to hear that someone else in the medical community is looking into this!!

If i was savvy enough with computers i would make some sort of polling site for crohns/IBD/UC to get some numbers for a few areas that i think may play a role..

1. Climate - where you initially showed signs of disease

2. Red meat intake - # of meals a week containing it

3. ADHD/ADD meds - it was a fade many were subjected to (you dont do meth and walk away healthy) and most were Methamphetamine's

4. Acne meds - which one/what active ingredients did they use

and a few others i cant recall right now. Personally #1 and #2 are highly suspect. Dont take this like im a vegan or anything because i am far from it...well as far from it as i can be LOL its not like i can slam a steak at a whim..LOL Basically we need or maybe i need to become aware of a study that compiles this sort of data. Like i said before, we all have something in common..and once we find this or these triggers, we can move toward preventing others from this joy we have. I believe its a case of a genetic disposition toward development of these diseases which at some point we unintentionally combine the right triggers to make it manifest itself.

Crohns is what pushed me toward a medical career. It won round one by taking my job and abs .. so if i could help punch it in the face that would be amazing. This forum is a epic chance to begin that and i appreciate its creator...plus its nice to know im not a odd freak...im just one of many freaks scattered around the world..LOL

Last edited by RN4ME; 02-25-2011 at 08:02 PM.
02-25-2011, 07:55 PM   #11
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Well I certainly will admit to climates but I rarely eat red meat, if at all. Never had ADD meds or acne stuff. However my family is loaded in IBD.
02-25-2011, 08:03 PM   #12
RN4ME
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Yeah i could be way off...but a shot in the dark still might hit the target every now and again..LOL
02-25-2011, 08:27 PM   #13
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I'd hardly call the D-Amphetamine salt I take "Meth"...lol (I've taken stimulants for ADHD since I was 14 & the meds are highly addictive)....BUT you make a very good point that stimulant medications might possibly have played a role in the Crohn's I have at age 30 now. I have wondered this myself--seriously. I have even asked the doc who writes my script for the ADHD med if it could have possibly contributed to my IBD--she says no, but I think she is wrong. My gut is telling me differently
02-25-2011, 10:28 PM   #14
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I was born and raised in the north. Well all my heritage is northern: Norwegian, Irish, Russian, Alaskan. LOL! Northerners tend to be meat eaters, especially red meat eaters. I haven't been on anything for acne or ADD/ADHD. Crohn's Disease and colon cancer do run quite heavily in my family though. I do have Jewish ancestry as well. I thought it was strange when one of my doctors had asked me about that. He said that Crohn's Disease is very common in Ashkanazi Jews.
02-26-2011, 08:07 AM   #15
RN4ME
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Lee your prolly right i may be a little over zealous with the meth comment LOL--I guess i see a lot of folk have the eating issues and stomach cramps and such associated with a lot of those ADHD and ADD medications--i just cant see years of that not doing something negative to the bodies system..and the timing of crohns hitting the masses and those meds hitting a fade level around the same corresponding to the crohns age group
02-26-2011, 10:03 AM   #16
Lee
 
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I wish I was never put on those ADHD drugs, but I've been taking a stimulant for 16 years--If I don't take it I don't feel like myself. It probably isn't the ADHD drugs--they really aren't good for you though

My doctor didn't say anything to me about Jewish ancestry---I read it off of Jefferson University Hospitals website (Philadelphia, PA). It isn't funny but when I read it--I started to laugh and called my mother because she is the parent who gave me the Jewish ancestry. My mother is a nurse (she is lactose intolerant) & she told me her father always had bouts of rectal bleeding (he died of colon cancer--in his 80's though). On the other hand my fathers family is Ukrainian and he's got GI problems too but they have never been as terrible as mine--meaning nothing has never put him in the hospital before. It was a salad and a handful of cashews that put me in the hospital.

Last edited by Lee; 02-26-2011 at 10:18 AM.
02-26-2011, 10:37 AM   #17
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Hi Lee, welcome to the forum btw lol. Many people are put on ADHD drugs and later on to find out they either out grow it or they could be a Kinesthetic learners

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinesthetic_learning... through psychology that my daughter studies in University, she was as younger put on a drug , but was taken off because she didnt like they way they made her feel. So I can see those drugs causing havoc. Also she has acne and I told her not to use Acutane, because IBD runs so heavily in the family. Stress has alot to do with it and hormones. She has studied that the human brain does not fully properly function at full capacity until the ages of 22-23 yrs old.

Cashews are not a good a idea if you are narrowed, hard to digest as well, and salads... love em, but they dont like the bowels! LOL

Sorry to hijack no intentions Rn4me
02-26-2011, 04:42 PM   #18
Lee
 
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Thanks Pen. I do not believe I have ever grown out of mine & I know I would never have gotten through 7.5 years of college without those meds.

I miss cashews and will forever miss salad (I've eaten it everyday for years). Prior to my 1st flare a couple of weeks ago I had a strict low carb/vegetarian diet. I've been eating veggie burgers and jello---which seems to have me doing ok. I gained 3lbs...lol---but to be honest I can't even tell. I don't want to be taking to many pills so I'm planning on getting off Asacol & Cipro after this month to see what happens---if it's possible.
03-13-2011, 10:10 PM   #19
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I have had problems with my crohn's in the past always in the winter and have recently begun to wonder about the sunlight issue. I wish there were more information to read on the subject or Crohn's and Sunlight! Summertimes are always the best, more energy no pain and my mood is always great. I'm sold on this theory.
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03-13-2011, 10:48 PM   #20
Miss Underestimated
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I came down with Crohn's while living at the beach - spent many hours there that summer. However, I agree that sunlight is wonderful. I also have a vitamin D deficiency and take therapeutic doses of it - 50,000 units once a week.

Now I get sun poisoning if I am out very long - I believe that is related to my CD - overactive immune system.
12-13-2011, 03:00 PM   #21
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Hi I have crohns and something the sun does for me helps so much.
Vitamin D from the sun takes 48 hours to get into your system.
I take vitamin d and it helps with my crohns so much.
But the sun is doing something else too, My tongue is always white because of the inflamation in my stomach if I go lay out in the sun for 1 hour in the summer I can feel the inflammation going down in my stomach and my tongue becomes almost all pink.
05-15-2012, 08:26 PM   #22
ggraeff
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I live in Michigan and was diagnosed with Crohn's in 1986 but suffered from it 10 years prior. I've been on every type of med and have had two resections in the past 10 years. Today I am on 100mg of Imuran that I started taking as soon as i started feeling the first signs of the disease after my last resection. While I would consider myself generally symptom-free, maybe even in remission, I can very quickly cause symptoms to recur by simply eating one of my trigger foods, or by eating out at a restaurant more than one day in a row. Once I start feeling the symptom, I simply avoid all trigger foods and eat my own home cooked food and i can eliminate the symptoms in about three days. OR, I can go outside and get 20-30 minutes of unprotected sun on as much of my body as I can, and my symptoms are gone by the end of the day. And this result is very consistent. Also, if I get a couple of days of sun exposure, I find that I can eat my trigger foods without any consequence. This was very obvious last winter when I was struggling with symptoms that my restricted diet wasn't wasn't really helping with. Winters tend to be worse for my Crohn's. My wife and I had a long weekend planned in Florida and I was concerned about traveling if my symptoms weren't under control, but went anyway as the trip was paid for. After being there for one day, and getting some good sun, my symptoms not only went away completely, but I was able to drink alcohol, one of my worst trigger foods, as well as sweet, carb-laden foods. I didn't have any symptoms the entire trip and when i got home, I immediately went back to my restricted diet. Other than a couple of stupid moves on my part for having a drink or dessert because I was feeling so good, I haven't had any problems since. Thank God it's spring in Michigan as we are getting some good sun and i am feeling great.

I swear by the sun as a treatment for my disease.
05-22-2012, 07:42 AM   #23
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I agree that Vitamin D is very important. I've started taking supplements and am going to get a blood test ASAP. Here's a link to some good info that my aunt sent along to me. Its very detailed.
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/ar...s-disease.aspx
05-22-2012, 08:44 AM   #24
kiny
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I always feel better in the summer or on vacation to a sunny place. Is it related? I don't know, it has just been like that every time.
10-30-2017, 11:29 AM   #25
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Its not the vitamin d people. The sunlight supresses the inflammation cells. It reduces t helper cells and th1 and reduces this way cytokines wich induce the inflammation. Its not the vitamin d. U can take mega doses vitamin d.. u wont feel the same as a week sunny days. Believe me... its the UVB radiation that supresses the inflammation. Not the vitamin d. Research it.... its everywhere explained that it reduces cytokines wich we make too much anyway. Buy an UVB lamp like megaray 100 watt uvb mercury self ballasted lamp. Those have the highest uvb radiation simular to the sun. Arcadia d3 lamp is another good one i think. It are lamps uses for lizards in a tank. So they get a sunny envirement.
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