How to Exercise with IBD

  • Most people understand that exercise is key in getting and maintaining a healthy body.  However, if you have Inflammatory Bowel Disease there may be many days where you just aren't up to exercise.  Some IBD patients limit exercise because they are afraid symptoms will reappear at a not so convenient time.

    Recent research seems to indicate that moderate, not stressful exercise is good for patients with IBD.  Voluntary running significantly reduced the genes in the colon that promoted inflammation in mice.  On the contrary stressful or forced exercise actually had the opposite effect (1).

    The study is not perfect but it does give us a clue into how exercise might effect the body in IBD patients.  The take away here is that you can get positive benefits from moderate exercise.  Pick something that you enjoy and do it regularly.  If you are in a huge flare up let your body rest and don't push it into "stress".  Over exercising is likely to be counterproductive.

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    If you take the time to plan out your activity, map out places for bathroom stops, bring any emergency kits you may need and hydrate you may just find that a little exercise improves your symptoms.

Published On: August 03, 2013