Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a condition that causes frequent diarrhea and sudden uncontrollable urges to use the bathroom accompanied with incontinence. Strangely, it affects more women than men. There is no inflammation of the colon, bowel obstructions, or growths. Approximately 20 percent of American experience this condition and 70 percent of sufferers go without treatment.
There is no consensus among medical doctors about what causes the condition. The most common opinions are that IBS is related to food allergies or sensitivities, reactions to stress, immune system reactions, or that a person’s colon and bowel are simply not working properly in general.
Each IBS sufferer may experience the disorder differently as well. The most common complains are stomach cramping, bloating, and pain; however, some people with IBS will have chronic diarrhea. Still, others will have chronic constipation, while another set of people will bounce between those two states.
The symptoms often increase when eating particular foods, big meals, or experiencing stress or depression. Because nerve endings connect the colon to the rest of the body, there are many issues similar to IBS. Due to this, many treatments are tried.
Treatment for IBS varies. Depending on the person, their doctor, and the severity of their IBS symptoms, strong prescription medications may be used to help relieve the constipation or diarrhea. However, many doctors will suggest alternative approaches before suggesting medications.
The first approach to managing IBS is changes in diet. If your IBS is caused due to food intolerance or allergies to certain foods, removing those from your diet can create drastic improvements. It’s common for people have lactose or gluten intolerance without knowing it.
Deep fried foods or foods good in grease may cause IBS to flare up. Heavy meals can also trigger a bout of IBS. By reducing the amount of food per meal, and eating fewer and smaller portions everyday, can help reduce IBS symptoms.
Including lots of fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet can help with IBS, particularly when constipation is a chronic problem. Bananas, for instance, will help relieve both diarrhea and constipation. Many people try taking extra fiber supplements, but these can actually cause the gas and bloating problems to become worse.
Herbal formulas can be of great help to IBS sufferers. Herbal formulas are constructed to support and fortify the digestive tract.
Alfalfa or Chlorophyll are colon scrubbing herbs, which can help immensely with constipation problems. These also neutralize gas in the stomach and colon.
A good choice among to assist with diarrhea is Slipper Elm. It normalizes the stools and soothes, coats and heals the entire digestive tract. Slippery Elm should be taken with lots of water.
Cascara Sagrada is one of the strongest herbal laxatives. It helps increase activity in the bowels, so there may be some crmaping; however it does not act as a laxative.
Peppermint is an herb that works wonderfully for gas, bloating and stomach pains caused by indigestion. This botanical will help gas to pass from the intestine.
Garlic will also help expel gas from your system, and it has the added benefit of being able to help your colon rid itself of mucus and parasites which could be causing some of the IBS problems. Additionally garlic is an infection fighting herb, so if there are harmful bacteria in your colon causing the IBS, the garlic can help rid your body of them.
Keep in mind that IBS is not just about the intestines. Regardless of the treatment, the whole person must be taken into account.
Statements made in this article may not be approved by the FDA, and should not be taken as professional medical advice.