A Randomized Trial Comparing The Specific Carbohydrate Diet To A Mediterranean Diet In Adults With Crohn's Disease

Effect None
Values Neither group experienced changes in ratings of back or joint pain during the intervention, and ratings were also low at baseline.
Trial Design Randomized trial
Trial Length 1-6 months
Number of Subjects 194
Sex Both Genders
Age Range 18-29, 30-44, 45-64
Body Types Overweight, Average
Notes for this study:
In this 12-week randomized trial, 194 participants with mild to moderate CD followed the MD or SCD for 12 weeks to compare their effects on symptoms and inflammation

The primary and secondary outcomes included symptomatic remission,
fecal calprotectin response (indicating reduced intestinal inflammation), and C-reactive protein_(CRP) response (indicating reduced systemic inflammation).

Disease-specific questionnaires were used to assess disease-specific symptoms, body weight, extraintestinal manifestations of CD, stool quality, fatigue, social isolation, pain, and sleep quality.

The researchers also analyzed the fecal calprotectin response and CRP response in combination with symptomatic remission.

Stool microbiome analysis was performed at baseline and at weeks 6 and 12 of the trial to determine effects on alpha and beta diversity (microbiome measurements).

Both groups reported similar adherence to both diets and significantly increased their consumption of fruits and vegetables. Both groups also experienced similar rates of remission and improvements in fatigue, pain, sleep interference, social isolation, and symptoms as assessed by disease-specific questionnaires. However, CRP did not improve in either group, indicating that the diets may influence symptoms more than inflammation.

During interviews before the trial, the participants indicated that they would be unlikely to continue a restrictive diet for longer than 6 weeks unless they experienced improvements in their symptoms. Therefore, the authors recommended the MD (rather than the SCD), given its numerous health benefits and less restrictive guidelines.

Over the course of the study, 70 participants withdrew, and this could have influenced the results. Although the authors noted that the subgroup of participants with high dietary adherence demonstrated improvements similar to those of the entire group, the withdrawal of participants reduced their sample size enough to affect their statistical analysis. Additionally, improvements in symptoms and remission could be explained by the increased dietary quality rather than exclusion of specific foods.
Funding issues for this study:
Of the 31 authors listed on this study, 13 reported one or more potential conflicts of interest.