Rising Rates of Crohns Disease and Fast Food

Crohn’s disease is on the rise in England and Wales, according to the BBC. It can be a painful disease that could be caused by diet.
It is a long term condition and causes swelling and inflammation anywhere along the digestive tract, but most commonly affects the small intestine.
The common symptoms of Crohn’s disease include diarrhoea, abdominal pain, weight loss and fatigue.
The exact cause of Crohn’s disease is still unknown, but there are several factors that can help the development of it, including a genetic susceptibility, an issue with the immune system, past infections and smoking.
Now it has been theorised that the disease may be caused by a diet that is heavy with fast food. Dr Sally Mitton of St. George’s Hospital in south-west London told the BBC that “lifestyle factors like eating a lot of junk food or taking many courses of antibiotics may make it more likely to happen.”
The Health and social Care information Centre says 4,937 16 to 29 year olds were admitted to hospital in England in 2003/4.
Last year this number had almost quadrupled to 19,405 cases.
There is no cure for the disease, and sufferers have to alter their diet to try and manage the symptoms.
The NHS claims that the disease is far more common in western cultures, rather than in some more impoverished countries. This indicates that environmental factors play a huge part in causing Crohn’s disease, and it is possible that the high level of processed foods could have something to do with causing it.
Whether this is true or not, avoiding as many processed foods as possible is good diet advice. A healthy balanced diet doesn’t necessarily mean that fast food should be ruled out completely, but moderation is key.

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