Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common condition of the large intestine, and it affects the function of the digestive tract. The function of the large intestine can be altered due to an imbalance in hormones or from stress, which can lead to changes in bowel habits such as constipation and diarrhoea.
What Causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
There are many potential causes for developing IBS, such as genetics, infections, food sensitivities, and muscle tension. It’s a horrible condition to have, and I’ve suffered from IBS since I was 14, and it’s only got progressively worse over the years. Whilst IBS won’t ever go away completely, there are things we can do which will help lessen the symptoms and flare-ups.
What Are The IBS Symptoms?
Symptoms for irritable bowel syndrome vary greatly from person to person, but they tend to include abdominal pain or discomfort, bloating or gas pain, distension or fullness in the abdominal area. Other symptoms you may experience include stomach cramps or stomach spasms, passage of mucus from rectum, constipation alternating with diarrhoea.
Treatment Options for Managing Symptoms of IBS
People with IBS often experience a wide range of symptoms that can make living with the condition more challenging. Identifying and managing these symptoms can help you better manage your IBS and improve your quality of life. There are a number of treatment options for people with IBS, depending on the severity of their symptoms.
The treatment options are going to differ depending on what your triggers are. For example, one of my own personal triggers is stress. Stress isn’t something you can avoid as a whole, but you can remove yourself from stressful situations if at all possible.
With IBS you tend to spot tell tail signs you’re going to experience an IBS episode, like rapid bloating or pain, and it’s sometimes helpful to keep a diary of your symptoms, so you can spot any common triggers or patterns which might be forming, to help you treat your symptoms.
How to Treat IBS Naturally with Diet Changes
The natural treatments for IBS are diet changes and lifestyle changes. There are said to be 3 different types of diet change that can be done to lessen the symptoms with irritable bowel syndrome:
- eliminating trigger foods
- following a low FODMAPs diet
- trying the Mediterranean diet
Eliminating trigger foods means removing foods that are gluten-containing grains and dairy products. Following the low FODMAPs diet restricts certain carbohydrates to reduce the amount of gas these foods create. Everybody is different, and what works for one person won’t for another, so it’s good to experiment and see what helps you and your body.