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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


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3. Prevalence, characteristics, and impact of bloating symptoms in patients with irritable bowel syndrome

4. Neuropathophysiology of irritable bowel syndrome

5. Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Review Article

6. Irritable bowel syndrome: Overview

7. Food Allergy and Intolerance in IBS

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10. The Science, Evidence, and Practice of Dietary Interventions in Irritable Bowel Syndrome

11. Irritable bowel syndrome and food interaction

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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

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15. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth: Comprehensive Review of Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment Methods

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20. Candidiasis: predisposing factors, prevention, diagnosis and alternative treatment

21. Small intestinal fungal overgrowth

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24. Impact of psychological stress on irritable bowel syndrome

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28. Clostridium difficile infection

29. Viruses Causing Gastroenteritis: The Known, The New and Those Beyond.

30. Protozoan parasites in irritable bowel syndrome: A case-control study

31. The relationship between intestinal parasites and some immune-mediated intestinal conditions

32. Irritable bowel syndrome and intestinal parasites: a view from South America

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

34. Irritable bowel syndrome in Egyptian patients: plausible risk factors and association with intestinal protozoa

35. Gastrointestinal transit in thyroid disease.

36. Endometriosis in patients with irritable bowel syndrome: Specific symptomatic and demographic profile, and response to the low FODMAP diet.

37. Endometriosis and irritable bowel syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

38. Relationship Between Constipation and Medication.

39. Drug-induced diarrhoea.

40. Association of constipation with neurologic diseases.

41. Bowel symptoms predate the diagnosis among many patients with multiple sclerosis: A 14-year cohort study.


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