Creating an IC Friendly Thanksgiving

If this is your first holiday season with a diagnosis of IC, we’ve assembled some resources that we hope will help you enjoy the season, including new videos, articles, meal tips and many IC friendly recipes to play with. Surviving a holiday like Thanksgiving is all about pacing yourself, communicating clearly with your family and, of course, avoiding those things that we know can trigger IC flares.

When it comes to travelling, we encourage you to keep your car rides as short as possible or, better yet, bring the holidays to your home this year. This is the time of year when it’s perfectly okay to ask for help from family members and friends, particularly when it comes to cooking and the inevitable clean up afterwards! Think potluck!

Why oh why is there at least one family member who, rudely, doesn’t believe that IC is a real disease? We suggest that you put out our free IC Information Fact Sheets(download them here), the book the IC Survival Guide, a few of our IC Optimist magazines or even some of our Living With IC videos! When it comes up, calmly look that person in the face and say “Three to 8 million women in the USA suffer from this disease and 1 to 4 million men. Here are some reading materials that will help you understand what I’m struggling with.” Then change the topic. Don’t be defensive. Don’t be hurt. Remember, these individuals are just extremely naive or uninformed. It says far more about them than you if they bring it up in a hurtful way! I encourage you to calmly and firmly stand up for yourself!

I don’t know about you but I love eating a traditional turkey meal. I’ve never been a fancy food eater. I like my food simple, fresh and tasty so if I have to choose between a fancy, marinated meat and roast turkey, I’ll take the turkey any day. The same is true for stuffing and veggies. What could be better than mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes with butter! Yum!!! Luckily, the vast majority of traditional thanksgiving desserts are IC friendly, particularly my favorite pumpkin pie and whipped cream!

In any case, if you’re not sure about what you can or should eat for the holidays, much less drive to Grandma’s house, I hope that the resources below help you enjoy the holiday! Blessings to you and your family. – Jill O. ICN Founder

Living With IC Video Series – Thanksgiving & Holiday Episodes

The Living With IC video series has had more than 200,000 views on YouTube. We hope that these two new episodes provide you with some new ideas! You can find many more, including more tips on travelling, taking vacations and, of course, managing IC flares on our website! (

Facing The Holidays With New Diagnosis of Interstitial Cystitis Thanksgiving Menu IdeasIC Friendly Thanksgiving Menu Ideas

Feature Articles

Here are some articles that you might find helpful!

Meal Tips

Roast TurkeyThese recipes have been gathered from several resources including the ICN Fresh Tastes by Bev diet column, the ICN IC Chef Online Cookbook, recipes submitted by patients in the ICN Forum and a few of our favorite recipe websites (Victoria Magazine, The Food Network, Allrecipescom).

Please remember that the IC diet is extremely individual and if any of these recipes include an ingredient that you’ve been sensitive to in the past, we suggest that you avoid that recipe again.


Think fresh and healthy, such as carrot sticks, celery sticks, fresh breads and mild cheeses.

Main Course: Roast Turkey, Chicken, Beef and Pork

*Please avoid brined (soaked in a salt bath) turkeys.
*Please avoid any hot, spicy or heavily salted sauces and marinades.
*Please avoid cranberry based sauces.

 Veggies: Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Yams, Peas, Green Beans

Breads: Fresh, home made breads and rolls are ideal!

 Dessert: Fruit and pumpkin desserts are perfect.

*Apple desserts should be made with lower acid, sweeter apples such as Gala or Fuji apples.

By |2017-01-31T10:52:35+00:00November 18th, 2014|Diet & Food, Interstitial Cystitis Network Blog, Self Care, Self-Help Tips for IC, Bladder & Pelvic Pain|Comments Off on Creating an IC Friendly Thanksgiving

About the Author:

My Google Profile+ Jill Heidi Osborne is the president and founder of the Interstitial Cystitis Network, a health education company dedicated to interstitial cystitis, bladder pain syndrome and other pelvic pain disorders. As the editor and lead author of the ICN and the IC Optimist magazine, Jill is proud of the academic recognition that her website has achieved. The University of London rated the ICN as the top IC website for accuracy, credibility, readability and quality. (Int Urogynecol J - April 2013). Harvard Medical School rated both Medscape and the ICN as the top two websites dedicated to IC. (Urology - Sept 11). Jill currently serves on the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Panel (US Army) where she collaborates with researchers to evaluate new IC research studies for possible funding. Jill has conducted and/or collaborates on a variety of IC research studies on new therapeutics, pain care, sexuality, the use of medical marijuana, menopause and the cost of treatments, shining a light on issues that influence patient quality of life. An IC support group leader and national spokesperson for the past 20 years, she has represented the IC community on radio, TV shows, at medical conferences. She has written hundreds of articles on IC and its related conditions. With a Bachelors Degree in Pharmacology and a Masters in Psychology, Jill was named Presidential Management Intern (aka Fellowship) while in graduate school. (She was unable to earn her PhD due to the onset of her IC.) She spends the majority of her time providing WELLNESS COACHING for patients in need and developing new, internet based educational and support tools for IC patients, including the “Living with IC” video series currently on YouTube and the ICN Food List smartphone app! Jill was diagnosed with IC at the age of 32 but first showed symptoms at the age of 12.