SCD Research Section



The following are valuable sources when inquiring as to the research done regarding the Specific Carbohydrate Diet's effect on patients with Crohn's, Ulcerative Colitis, IBS, Celiac, Lupus, Autism and more. Selected research related to IBD is also kept here.

Breaking The Vicious Cycle & SCD Research       

Obviously, Elaine Gottschall's book is the best source of information regarding SCD research. There are twelve pages of valuable sources and references in the back of the book.

Digestion-gut-autism connection: the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, in Medica Veritas 1 (2004), by Elaine Gottaschall. Be sure to visit the autism page for more SCD and autism information.

The results of Dr. Leo Galland's study of the SCD: "...All 20 patients demonstrated a decrease in symptoms and reduction in medication use. Six patients have entered complete clinical remission, discontinued all medication, and maintained remission for five to 80 months...". Dr. Galland is listed on our SCD-friendly doctors page. Note: Elaine does not agree with the re-introduction of "non-glutenous starches".

You must listen to these audio files:
Lucy Rosset on Dr. Ronald Hoffman's 'Healthtalk', June 28, 2000. Those suffering from Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, and other digestive disorders can learn how a change in diet can provide superior, long-term remission.

Elaine Gottschall at the Whole Life Expo in Toronto, November 2000. In "Bowel Disorders Cured", Elaine discusses how she came to write the book, how the diet works, and more!

Dr. Ronald Hoffman's article in Conscious Choice, titled "Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis" includes a great explanation of CD and UC, and he explains why he recommends the SCD to his readers.

Ed in Holland ( has compiled a nice collection of research which supports the SCD. As he points out, "Please remember: To regain your health, you need to keep an open mind."

Check out the year 1924 in the United Fruit Historical Society's Chronology!

Learn about Carbhohydrates In Nutrition and how they contribute to mucus formation (something which concerns people with IBD).


Genetics and Heredity       

Genetics and heredity have long been considered to be linked to Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Since 1996, chromosome 16 has been marked as general location of the 'IBD gene'.

Research announced on May 21st, 2001 indicates that scientists from two independant studies have identified a gene linked to Crohn's disease. The article goes on to say "Crohn's disease appears to be caused by a mix of both inherited and environmental factors. One theory holds that the disease results from a faulty response to normal microbes found in the intestines, leading to an exaggerated immune response against the body's own tissue. The alterations in the Nod2 protein may explain part of what leads that immune response astray in some patients."

These findings (especially the faulty respone to intestinal microbes) concur with the research by Dr. S.V. Haas and Elaine Gottschall implicating microbial growth as a factor in causing Crohn's disease as well as their advocating the Specific Carbohydrate Diet in altering the microbial growth both qualitatively and quantitatively. The full findings relating to the identification of the gene will appear in the May 31, 2001 issue of Nature. Dr. Judy Cho, head of one of the research teams says, "We have long suspected that both genetics and the environment played a role in inflammatory bowel disease. This finally allows us to begin to understand how they work together to cause this disease."

Read more about the genetic and environment link




Intestinal Bacterium and Nutrition       

A 2008 research article in the European Journal of Clinical Investigation about a study evaluating the efficacy of a combined therapy of anti-inflammatory Boswellia and antifibrotic Scutellaria extracts on the development of colonic fibrosis in rats (and how this might relate to people with IBD, especially Crohn's Disease).

An article in the Cleveland Free Times: "A scientific debate rages over an uproven theory linking a bacterium in milk with Crohn's disease -- a debilitating intestinal disorder afflicting at least four million people worldwide".

A 9-month double-blind trial of 40 individuals found that a combination of three probiotic bacteria could significantly reduce the risk of a pouchitis flare-up.

An article in Science about the effect of grain-fed cows on E. coli and IBD.

An article about the immunodeficiency hypothesis of Crohn's.

In his March, 2001 presentation titled "White House Commission on Complementary & Alternative Medicine", Jeffrey S. Bland, PhD, discusses the importance of nutrition (including diet and supplements) and lifestyle in staying healthy. "...Through advances made in understanding the genetic code locked within our 23 pairs of chromosomes, researchers have determined that common age-related diseases are not single-gene diseases and inevitable, but that they are instead controlled by multiple genes on different chromosomes. They are usually not expressed as disease until the person's genes are plunged into a harmful nutritional environment and lifestyle. In a sense, this relates to the concept of "genetic potential through nutrition." Nutrition and micronutrients bathe our genes each day with information from which our phenotypes result..."

Alan Ebringer, MD, or King's College London has some research diet and ankylosing spondylitis. He believes his "AS Diet" would also help people with Crohn's disease. The diet consists of "low intake of starch (no bread, cakes, potatoes and pasta) has been used in the treatment of AS patients at the Middlesex Hospital with relative success since 1982. This has led to a reduction in the quantity of NSAID's required for alleviating symptoms". This diet is also known as the "London AS Diet".


What is IBD? What is Crohn's Disease?       

Read a tradtional description of IBD, comparing Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

Read a traditional description of Crohn's Disease and its treatments.


Italian research supports SCD       

Research at the University of Bologna, Italy indicates dietary habits as risk factors for inflammatory bowel disease.


"Low Carb diets" and IBD       


In J.M. Kauffman's "Low Carb Diets", published by the Society for Scientific Exploration, was reviewed in Journal of Scientific Exploration, March 1, 2004. "...Twenty authors of the 12 books reviewed recommend low carbohydrate diets. Not only do all of the books have a plausible biochemical rationale for their advice, but they present histories of extremely long adherence to low-carbohydrate diets by individuals, many with medical degrees, with good health being the result. Clinical observations by 9 of the authors who have extensive experience treating obese and diabetic patients support the value of low-carbohydrate diets...

"Many other advantages of low-carbohydrate diets are shown by improvements in a diverse area of afflictions, from Crohn's and celiac diseases, to cancer, multiple sclerosis, and arthritis. However, many other aspects of diet advice in these books are not in agreement, and a majority of them contain technical errors...

"Low-carbohydrate diets, even if maintained for decades, have been demonstrated to be safe and effective. Nevertheless, they are still considered to be alternative, and thus targets of attack by certain associations and governmental agencies..."


Farts, flatulence, and gas       
Learn all about flatulence from an interview with "Dr. Michael D. Levitt, a gastroenterologist and associate chief of staff at the Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Levitt, 64, could well be called Dr. Fart because he is the world's leading authority on flatulence...".

Colon Reflorestation       

The American Journal of Gastroenterology, Nov. 2000, includes an article on the benefits of "colon reflorestation" to cure chronic diarrhea.

Elaine Gottschall's comments regarding this "new" research and a doctor in the U.S. that has experience with it.


Conduct your own research       

MedLine is the world's largest medical library and is formally known as the United States National Library of Medicine. While they are mainstream and mostly traditional, the NIH has a very useful Search option so you can continue your research into IBD.

PubMed, a public medical resource, contains several articles about diet and IBD. One such article describes the risks associated with the frequent intake of rice, bread, and green tea. You may this link to access a search dialog window of PubMed.


The SCD has been shown to help in other auto-immune diseases, including lupus.       

The SCD has been shown to help in autism.       

Science Magazine       
Science magazine contains a lot of research regarding immunodeficiency and bacterial causes of IBD. A free account will give you plenty of article summaries; a paid account will give you even more.