It’s estimated that 10 to 20 percent of the world’s population suffers from mild to severe Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). The typical symptoms associated with this disorder of the gastrointestinal tract include pain, gas, diarrhea, constipation, or bloating. Diet is a major factor in managing the symptoms of IBS. Moderation is key in coping with the effects of IBS.
Those dealing with IBS should refrain from eating meals that are too large. Eating smaller meals throughout the day is preferable to eating a large meal in one sitting. Foods that are high in fat should also be avoided. IBS sufferers should stay away from fast-food meals in general because fried foods can definitely aggravate abdominal cramps and diarrhea. Coffee, alcohol, and caffeine are stimulants and irritants that affect the muscles in the colon. There are several types of sugars which are poorly absorbed by the bowl. Sorbitol and fructose are two examples of these types of sugar. Sorbitol is a sweetener found in diabetic gum, candy, and other foods. Fructose is another sweetener that may aggravate IBS symptoms. Honey and several fruits are high in fructose.
There are many foods that naturally produce gas when consumed. These foods should be avoided if bloating and gas are symptoms that are already present in those with IBS. Some of these foods include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, onions, beans, raisins, peas, peanuts, and bagels are a few examples of foods that frequently lead to bloating.
It’s critical that individuals with IBS educate themselves about fiber. Insoluble fiber is very necessary for a healthy diet but it can exascurbate IBS symptoms. It’s actually a GI stimulant. Soluble fiber is the type of fiber that’s the least irritating to individuals with IBS. This type of fiber actually offers benefits such as soothing the digestive tract and stabilizes intestinal contractions. A simple search online with the keywords “soluble fiber foods” and “insoluble fiber foods” will yield a list of foods that fall into each category.
In conjuction with added fiber, ensuring the numbers of good gut flora (or probiotics) are within a healthy range can help the symptoms of IBS. Eating natural yoghurt is one way of obtaining probiotics, but there are also a range of probiotic suppliments available from pharmacies which can assist with the condition such as Ethical Nutrients IBS Support tablets.
A good diet for IBS sufferers will vary for each individual but there are general guidelines and groups of foods that are commonly beneficial or detrimental to those combating this disease. A primary health care physician should be involved in making decisions related to an IBS diet so that an individual is assured that their general nutritional needs are being met. Eating healthy is possible and encouraged for those dealing with IBS.