One of Marnina’s many positive qualities is her relentless energy to educate, raise awareness, raise funds, and reduce stigmas that are associated with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). She has campaigned on Capitol Hill through IBD Day on the Hill, she has volunteered at Camp Oasis to be a role model for younger kids with IBD, she has raised over $13,000 for IBD research through Team Challenge, and most recently, she organized an event in which John Bradley, author of The Foul Bowel: 101 Ways to Survive and Thrive with Crohn’s Disease spoke at a local hospital about his IBD trials and tribulations. We have extra copies of the book for sale and can mail copies to anyone interested. Contact us for more info (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Marnina is living proof that IBD does not have be debilitating, especially since she continues to manage to overcome her disease and to live out her dreams. She still experiences the discomforts associated with Crohn’s Disease (testing, doctors visits, stomach issues and dietary restrictions), but her resolve to fight against IBD is just as strong today as it was in the hospital 8 years ago when she was first diagnosed.
Marnina can only do so much though; the need for increased IBD awareness and education grows every day, especially with the news that the rate of new IBD diagnoses increases with an estimated 30,000 new diagnoses every year in the United States. That is why we are so excited to support the ever-growing World IBD Day, which is celebrated annually on May 19. Thirty-six countries on four continents will be participating in this year’s World IBD Day. IBD organizations, individual activists, bloggers, doctors, patients and anyone with a connection to these debilitating diseases around the world will be taking time to educate others about IBD by openly discussing IBD, distributing leaflets and/or posting videos or statements on social media websites about life with IBD. To read more about how the international community is commemorating World IBD Day, click here. There is also a World IBD Day PicBadge that can be added to your profile picture on social media sites such as Facebook, and it can be personalized with your own message. We have already added the PicBadge to our Facebook page! To download the badge, please visit www.picbadges.com and search for World IBD Day.
Personally, it is easy to be wrapped up in Marnina’s story and struggles with IBD. I live with her and can see her daily struggle of managing IBD. However, it is important to remember that IBD is a global disease. While it affects over 1.4 million Americans, there are over 5 million people worldwide living with IBD (In fact, a simple Google search of “inflammatory bowel disease” turns up over 40 billion results, while Crohn’s Disease registers over 12 billion. Clearly, there are more than just a few people talking about IBD. While the Google search numbers may seem small when compared to the search term “Obama” (which turns up 154 billion results), the truth is that thanks to modern technology and social media, IBD awareness has increased dramatically. I wish I had some statistic to support my claim, but anecdotal evidence tells me that more people are becoming aware of IBD through multiple conduits; a friend may have been recently diagnosed with IBD, they read about IBD in some magazine, or maybe they saw a commercial for Crohn’s Disease or an IBD medication.
As we continue to be a blog that educates about diet and nutrition with IBD, we wanted to make sure that we do our part in contributing to World IBD Day. With your help, we will continue to thrive with Crohn’s Disease and continue sharing our IBD friendly kitchen triumphs (as well as our failures) with you. In just about two weeks we will be getting 13.1 miles closer to a cure as we run a half marathon with Team Challenge in Virginia. So far, we have raised over $5,00o for Crohn’s and Colitis research since February. Thank you for being our devoted followers and for helping us SKEWER IBD. If you would still like to donate to our fundraising efforts for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, you can do so by clicking here. Any and every amount makes a difference!
Happy World IBD Day!