Study of Genes, Environment, and Microbes (GEM Study)

(Note: posts have been sparse lately due to new baby:)


In Canada, the GEM project has started. Unlike the "narrow" drug studies which dominate IBD research, the GEM study "aims to define how human genetics, environmental and microbial changes interact and contribute to the development of Crohn's disease."

To study all three factors (genetics, environment, and microbes--intestinal bacteria), 5,000 healthy siblings of Crohn's patients are being recruited. These siblings, who have a higher risk of Crohn's, will be followed for several years. The genetic, environmental, and microbial (GEM) status of these siblings will be assessed as follows:

(1) Genetic analysis - blood samples

(2) Environment - urine samples and questionnaires

(3) Microbial exposure - stool samples

It will be years before the study yields results. However, this type of combined research will provide more insight into Crohn's than attempting to study genetics, environment, or intestinal flora in isolation.

More information may be found on the study's website:

Keep an IBD Journal (Video)!

In the video below, "fernpixel", who has ulcerative colitis, describes how to keep a health journal--and why it's important. If you're not keeping a journal and suffering from Crohn's or ulcerative colitis or starting out on the specific carbohydrate diet, it is worth watching:

Read More

SCD cookbook in Living Without Magazine

Recipes for The Specific Carbohydrate Diet was reviewed in the June-July 2008 issue of Living Without magazine. We first heard of it from friends, who were picking up their daily mail at the front door and began browsing through the magazine - they started shouting with excitement when they saw our new cookbook in it.

You can read the review below. Enjoy!

SCD Peanut Butter Brownies


Recently, Amy McKenna blogged about a quick and easy recipe for those without much time:

Being on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet means that if I want a yummy treat, I usually have to bake it. And being a mommy of a 3 year old and 6 month old doesn't give me tons of free time in the kitchen. So if I'm going to bake, it's got to be quick and easy. Something I can throw together during nap time or after the kids are in bed but before I hit the sack. . . .(more)

Note: If you're new to the diet, avoid peanut butter until symptoms have cleared up and then, if you use it, try it cautiously.

News Article on SCD Brooklyn Event

Intestinal Health Awareness Seminar A Huge Success

The following is an excerpt from the news article (linked above) about the SCD Seminar in Brooklyn, NY, that took place June 1st, 2008.

"On Sunday, June 1, Brooklyn's Torah V'Yirah Hall was packed with hundreds of people who came to hear doctors and patients speak openly and candidly about living and coping with intestinal disorders. Awareness was raised about an encouraging approach that has brought relief to thousands of sufferers of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and celiac disease.

IBD sufferers who had previously tried everything in the modern medical arsenal—only to experience disappointing results and devastating side effects—passionately shared how their lives were turned around after they simply changed their way of eating. Health-care practitioners, patients, and concerned family members were moved and inspired by the heartfelt testimonies of those who had achieved success with the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD)."