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STOP managing IBS symptoms and address the causes for a long term solution!

Updated: Jan 8, 2023

Most books, google searches, You Tube videos and medical advice for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) sufferers declare there is no cure. They proclaim that one can only manage the symptoms of IBS with medications and stress relieving tools. Occasionally you'll find advice on the potential benefits of probiotics or other lifestyle and dietary changes. The low FODMAP diet and hypnotherapy are the current most recommended therapies for IBS.


However, my years of experience in Functional Medicine has shown that this approach is failing many IBS sufferers. Once given an IBS diagnosis they typically flounder along, frustrated and with little hope. But there is hope and there is often a long term solution. I have helped many recover from chronic debilitating diarrhea, extreme bloating and/or persistent painful constipation.

intestines and gut health

The solution lies in identifying and addressing the root causes.


What can be an underlying cause of IBS symptoms?

Once more serious conditions such as coeliac disease, Inflammatory Bowel disease (IBD) and colorectal cancer have been ruled out often an IBS diagnosis is given. But a number of factors can be involved in the symptoms of IBS.


The acronym I use to investigate the root causes of IBS is F.O.L.I.

  • Food allergy, sensitivity or intolerance

  • Overgrowth - of bacteria or fungi in the small or large bowel (intestines)

  • Lifestyle - emotional stress, lack of exercise and poor diet

  • Infection - bacterial, viral or parasitic - past or present

Other potential causes include:

  • Thyroid disorders

  • Endometriosis - females only

  • Medications

  • Nervous system disorders e.g. Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis

My experience has shown that although lifestyle factors and food sensitivities play a major role in IBS, they are rarely the only cause. Most frequently identified is a small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, also known as SIBO.

SIBO is thought to occur in up to 78% of IBS sufferers, yet it is largely misunderstood and seldom investigated by the medical profession.

Post-infectious IBS from a previous bacterial or viral infection as a result of food poisoning or a stomach bug would also be high on the list of causes.


In my opinion, not thoroughly investigating and addressing these causes is a crime. Many diagnosed with IBS are needlessly suffering. There are treatment options and gut healing protocols that can be truly transformational.


It is vital that those experiencing abdominal pain related to bowel movements, with chronic constipation and/or diarrhea, know that there is help out there. Managing symptoms is not always the answer.


To learn more visit...


nourish to flourish IBS solution


REFERENCES:

1. Irritable bowel syndrome: a clinical review https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25734736/

2. Rome Criteria and a Diagnostic Approach to Irritable Bowel Syndrome https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29072609/

3. Prevalence, characteristics, and impact of bloating symptoms in patients with irritable bowel syndrome https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19124113/

4. Neuropathophysiology of irritable bowel syndrome https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12184133/

5. Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Review Article https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4154827/

6. Irritable bowel syndrome: Overview https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279416/

7. Food Allergy and Intolerance in IBS https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5358086/

8. Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Dietary Interventions https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6423692/

10. The Science, Evidence, and Practice of Dietary Interventions in Irritable Bowel Syndrome https://www.cghjournal.org/article/S1542-3565(15)00248-7/pdf

11. Irritable bowel syndrome and food interaction https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4112903/

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13. Self-reported food-related gastrointestinal symptoms in IBS are common and associated with more severe symptoms and reduced quality of life https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23644955/

14. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20937459/

15. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth: Comprehensive Review of Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment Methods https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7386065/

16. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth and Irritable Bowel Syndrome - An Update https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32754068/

17. Normalization of lactulose breath testing correlates with symptom improvement in irritable bowel syndrome. a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12591062/

18. Gastrointestinal bacterial overgrowth: pathogenesis and clinical significance https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3752184/

19. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth and Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Bridge between Functional Organic Dichotomy https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5347643/

20. Candidiasis: predisposing factors, prevention, diagnosis and alternative treatment https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24789109/

21. Small intestinal fungal overgrowth https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25786900/

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23. Stress and the gut: pathophysiology, clinical consequences, diagnostic approach and treatment options. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22314561/

24. Impact of psychological stress on irritable bowel syndrome https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4202343/

25. Post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2721231/

26.The incidence and risk factors of post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome: a meta-analysis https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22024145/

27. Prevalence, Risk Factors, and Outcomes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome After Infectious Enteritis: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. https://www.gastrojournal.org/article/S0016-5085(17)30008-2/fulltext

28. Clostridium difficile infection https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27158839/

29. Viruses Causing Gastroenteritis: The Known, The New and Those Beyond. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4776197/

30. Protozoan parasites in irritable bowel syndrome: A case-control study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5680167

31. The relationship between intestinal parasites and some immune-mediated intestinal conditions https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25926937/

32. Irritable bowel syndrome and intestinal parasites: a view from South America https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27409092/

33. Parasitic infections in irritable bowel syndrome patients: evidence to propose a possible link, based on a case-control study in the south of Iran https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32487206/

34. Irritable bowel syndrome in Egyptian patients: plausible risk factors and association with intestinal protozoa https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30885054/

35. Gastrointestinal transit in thyroid disease. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6706068/

36. Endometriosis in patients with irritable bowel syndrome: Specific symptomatic and demographic profile, and response to the low FODMAP diet. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28303579/

37. Endometriosis and irritable bowel syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32949284/

38. Relationship Between Constipation and Medication. https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/juoeh/41/2/41_145/_article

39. Drug-induced diarrhoea. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10647976/

40. Association of constipation with neurologic diseases. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF01308169

41. Bowel symptoms predate the diagnosis among many patients with multiple sclerosis: A 14-year cohort study. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30957307/


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