Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease or IBD that affects the gastrointestinal tract. This condition affects millions of people around the world. Symptoms of Crohn’s disease include abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, rapid weight loss, and fever.
The good news is, you can still exercise even if you are afflicted with Crohn’s disease. However, because the gastrointestinal tract is very sensitive to force, gentle exercises work the best. In today’s post, we are listing down the best workouts to choose for Crohn’s disease patients.
The most common complications of Crohn’s disease are loss of bone density and strength. Poor diet, steroid medication, and nutrient deficiency cause the bones to weaken, leading to bone diseases osteopenia and osteoporosis. This is the reason why most patients suffering from Crohn’s disease are also afflicted with bone disease.
Strength training makes an excellent workout for Crohn’s disease patients because the exercises strengthen the bones. Of course, you have to be selective in terms of choosing which moves to add to your fitness routine. The key is to choose gentle, non-strenuous moves. Our advice is to work with a fitness trainer to help you get your fitness routine on track.
Low Impact Aerobic Exercise
Most patients lose stamina and feel extremely drained on a regular day because the disease leaves the body weak. One way to boost stamina and energy is to perform low impact aerobic exercises. Low-impact aerobic exercises strengthen the heart, tone the muscles, and improve lung capacity. Because it’s low impact, the workout is gentle on the joints and inflamed gut. A great way to start your workout is taking a 30 to 40 minutes’ walk. Once the body is strong enough, you can try cycling, swimming, and water aerobics.
Resistance training tones the muscles, strengthens the bones and prevents bone loss. Adding a couple or more resistance training exercises to your regular fitness routine is one way to improve health.
Some of the best resistance training workouts are those that involve using workout bands and free weights. Crunches, back extensions, pushups, and squats make a great addition to your weekly fitness routine. You can also try planking, lunges, and chest presses to target specific muscle groups! For a safe workout, we recommend resting for 15 to 30 seconds in between each exercise. Rest for 2 to 3 minutes between sets so you do not put too much pressure on the gut when working out.
Yoga and Tai Chi
Yoga and tai chi are great workouts for people living with Crohn’s disease because the moves are not strenuous. Both forms of exercises require carefully controlled movements and breathing techniques to gently tone the muscles, boost flexibility, improve balance, and correct the posture. Yoga and Tai chi also put the mind in a meditative state. Studies show that stress is one of the contributing factors that trigger Crohn’s disease symptoms. The controlled movements and deeper breathing calms the mind and strengthen the muscles. These form of exercises burn a lot of calories too!