(WYTV) – Nearly seven million people are living with that’s called inflammatory bowel disease. Their immune systems just aren’t working right, their own bodies attack the lining of the intestines.

This inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is a broad term for chronic inflammation of your digestive tract. Two types are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

“Ulcerative colitis really tends to only involve the colon and be more of a superficial type inflammation. Whereas Crohn’s disease can impact anything in the intestine, especially from the mouth all the way down to the anus,” explained Dr. Amanda Johnson of Gastroenterology at the Mayo Clinic.

Certain foods can help reduce the symptoms, but there is no one diet to control inflammation. If you have IBD, you should eat fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains. You want to avoid processed foods, foods with added sugars and animal fats. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.

There are medical treatments that tend to suppress the immune system.

There is no cure and no exact cause, but researchers are looking at how our genes and the environment play a role in this chronic disease.