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8 Famous People With Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis

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You may be surprised to know there are a number of well-known people who have IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) and are in the public eye on a daily basis. They are known for their accomplishments, not their diagnosis. They’ve changed their daily routine by living a healthy lifestyle, taking their medications, and avoiding alcohol/smoking so it doesn’t worsen their symptoms. These are the warriors who won’t let Crohn’s or UC get in their way of maintaining the goals they have set for themselves.

Most of them have come forward to share their journey with others to prove that even though they have this illness, it doesn’t have them. They are the local athletes, singers, actors/actresses, musicians, politicians, comedians, and even Olympic athletes who have been diagnosed with IBD. Here are a few top-notch examples of famous people who’ve used their time and talent to assist in their local CCFA communities by raising money for a cure or educating the general public about how they live with their illness. The list could go on and on about who has which type of IBD and how they’re managing it.

These are a few of the Heroes of CCFA:

1. Cynthia McFadden

She is an ABC News correspondent diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. She now works to raise awareness and assists with fundraisers for the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation (CCFA).

2. Mike McCready

He is the lead guitarist for Pearl Jam and is a Crohn’s survivor. He’s dedicated to raising awareness and funds for the CCFA. He went public to show people that despite having IBD, it doesn’t stop you from achieving your dreams.

3. Amy Brenneman

She is an actress who starred in TV hits such as “Judging Amy” and “Private Practice.” She has UC and is a strong advocate of CCFA.

4. Marvin Bush

He is the youngest son of former President H.W. Bush. He was diagnosed with UC and underwent life-saving surgery. He also feels that part of the healing process comes from helping others.

5. Anastacia

She is a singer and songwriter who has Crohn’s. She has stated that she sees it as a “gift” because it has helped her discover who she really is as a person and has shown her how to live one moment at a time.

6. David Garrard

He is a quarterback for the Jacksonville Jaguars who has Crohn’s. He states that he looks on the bright side of life. He eats better, watches his weight, and takes medication to stay in remission.

7. Dwight Eisenhower

Halfway through his presidency, he was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Later on, he had a bowel obstruction which led to surgery. Five days afterward, he resumed conducting official business.

A banner promoting The Mighty's new Crohn's & UC Support group on The Mighty mobile app. The banner reads, Join the Crohn's & UC Support group to connect with people who understand life with IBD. Share resources, advice, triumphs, and struggles with others who get it. Click to join.

8. Kathleen Baker

At 14 years old, she was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and was already a promising swimmer for the Olympics. Her medical team was a huge help so she could continue doing what she loved. In the 2016 Summer Olympics, she won a gold medal in the 4 x 100-meter relay and a silver medal in the individual 100-meter backstroke.

These celebrities have had to face extremely difficult challenges throughout their lives. Just because we don’t have flashy cars, several mansions, a vacation home, etc. doesn’t make the average IBD patient any less important. We are the heroes to our loved ones and close friends. The examples we set for them today will be an inspiration for them tomorrow.

Learn more at Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.

Image via YouTube.

Originally published: November 9, 2020
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