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Vitamins for Crohn's Disease: Diet vs. Supplements

Just about any diet expert will tell you it's better to get vitamins and minerals from foods than from a pill.

For some people with Crohn's disease, that's just not possible. And Crohn's -- especially when it's active -- can make your body work harder. You may need more calories and nutrients than other people. At the same time, some healthy foods, such as high-fiber nuts and seeds, may trigger your symptoms.

In these cases, vitamin supplements can help fill the gaps.

If you think you are lactose intolerant and can’t digest dairy, your doctor may test you for that. You may be able to take lactase pills rather than avoid dairy foods.

Work With Your Doctor

While supplements may be a good idea for you, don't decide by yourself. Talk to your doctor first. Some supplements could affect your Crohn's drugs or make your symptoms worse. 

Your doctor may want to test your levels of iron, vitamin D, vitamin B12, and other vitamins and minerals first. What you need may also depend on where the damage is in your small intestine. Together, you can best decide what supplements may help you feel your best with Crohn's.