When it comes to chronic conditions, support is everything. And one of the positive aspects of being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis (UC), a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), is the community that comes along with it.
UC doesn't discriminate, and there are people from all walks of life who have a UC diagnosis. But sometimes, it can be hard to know where to look to find that community of other UC patients to inspire you. That’s where HealthCentral comes in: Read on to learn about 10 inspiring Instagram accounts that you should follow right now.
Lilly Polivoda is an all-around UC warrior badass. She's the cofounder of Lipstick and Legends, a YouTube channel that recognizes the women's movement. Lilly trains as a weightlifter and shares how her body has changed based on her UC status, from pre-diagnosis, to being on prednisone, to having an ostomy. While her Instagram account isn't 100 percent devoted to UC awareness, she's always open and honest when her UC is acting up and how she deals with it.
Double Baggin' It is a duo account featuring Danielle, who has UC, and Joe, who has Crohn's disease. They both have ostomies, too (thus the username). Danielle and Joe interject tons of humor into their Instagram posts, with a slight dose of reality. They produce regular videos, too, so you feel like you really get to know them. This past Halloween, the dynamic duo even dressed up their ostomy bags. If you look for humor in your diagnosis, or you’re trying to find some, this pair will keep you in stitches but help educate you at the same time.
Grace works as a children's nurse and manages both a personal Instagram account and her UC Queen account, where she focuses on advocating for invisible illness and shares her personal story with UC. Grace shares content about heruse of prednisone, her good days with people who “get it,” and her bad days when she's in the hospital for scopes or other treatment related to her UC. You can also see her sharing about her infusions.
UC “warrior princess” Mara shares what it’s like to live with her ileostomy, which she received in September 2018. Mara bares all with her UC story — everything from bag pictures to her days in the hospital, all without the use of filters or posed photos. Her posts are raw, real, and honest. She's a great influencer to follow, especially if you're a caregiver and new to the struggles that UC can bring.
Yes, there is actually a man out there who documents his UC journey on Instagram, too! While there aren't many, Ijmal is one of the few men who shows a very real and personal side of being diagnosed with UC. He posts a ton of hilarious and honest memes that he creates — whether with the silly things that people say about UC or inspiring messages of hope and strength. He shares images that show him receiving infusions and more, all while offering his best advice.
Emma is a mom with UC and a UC warrior of 25 years. She started her Instagram account to document her proctocolectomy and life after that experience. She shares updates of "today's improvements" and usually does so with an uplifting smile. She also documents her bag and stoma changes to help educate others. Her kiddos and dog are terribly cute, and she shows a unique perspective on the UC experience as a full-time mom.