what can i eat with ibs - What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?
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What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common ailments of the bowel (intestines) and affects an estimated 15% of persons in the US. The term, irritable bowel, is not a particularly good one since it implies that the bowel is responding irritably to normal stimuli, and this may or may not be the case. The several names for IBS, including spastic colon, spastic colitis, and mucous colitis, attest to the difficulty of getting a descriptive handle on the ailment. Moreover, each of the other names is itself as problematic as the term IBS.


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Note: Lotronex has only been approved for women who suffer from severe cases of diarrhea-predominant IBS ad have not responded to previous treatment methods.

His diet should be high in complex carbohydrates and fibre that includes beans, bran and whole grains. Avoid oranges as these are known to trigger diarrhoea. Sugar and refined carbohydrates (white rice, white bread, and noodles) must not be taken as they contribute to increased inflammatory action for IBS sufferers. Learn to relax as stress can worsen the condition. Try to exercise regularly.

IBS is best described as a functional disease. The concept of functional disease is particularly useful when discussing diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. The concept applies to the muscular organs of the gastrointestinal tract; the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, gallbladder, and colon. What is meant by the term, functional, is that both the muscles of the organs or the nerves that control the organs are not working normally, and, as a result, the organs do not function normally. The nerves that control the organs include not only the nerves that lie within the muscles of the organs but also the nerves of the spinal cord and brain.

The study of functional disorders of the gastrointestinal tract often is categorized by the organ of involvement. Thus, there are functional disorders of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon, and gallbladder. The amount of research on functional disorders has been focused mostly on the esophagus and stomach (such as dyspepsia), perhaps because these organs are easiest to reach and study. Research into functional disorders affecting the small intestine and colon (for example, IBS) is more difficult to conduct and there is less agreement among the research studies. This probably is a reflection of the complexity of the activities of the small intestine and colon and the difficulty in studying these activities. Functional diseases of the gallbladder, like those of the small intestine and colon, also are more difficult to study.

Over-the-counter (OTC) antidiarrheal medications can be effective at providing diarrhea relief when used as short-term treatment. There are two types of antidiarrheal drugs.

3 - Prescription Medications Low doses of tricyclic antidepressants are commonly prescribed to IBS patients for abdominal pain. These meds effectively block pain signals to the brain and don't cause diarrhea. However, they can cause other symptoms including constipation.

Study confirms IBS improvement Dr. Maia Dodds Irritable bowel syndrome is a debilitating and distressing condition, which affects 10-20% of the population. IBS is characterized by abdominal pain and altered bowel function such as constipation, diarrhea or alternating diarrhea and constipation. Some people have occasional symptoms, which can be aggravated by stress or food intolerances. Others experience crippling symptoms, and struggle to maintain their quality of life in the absence of any targeted, effective pharmaceutical treatments. This disorder affects people of all ages and backgrounds, including children, although women are predominantly affected. Severe IBS can dramatically restrict mobility, through loss of control of bowel function and severe abdominal pain. These symptoms contribute to IBS being second only to the common cold as the most frequent cause of absenteeism from work and school. Despite the significant impact on individuals and the population at large, there is no clear established cause for IBS. Whilst medical investigations are important to eliminate the possibility of an over-lapping pathology such as parasites, candida, inflammatory bowel disease, cealiacs or Crohn's disease, there is no specific investigation which patients can test positive for in order to confirm a diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. A diagnosis of IBS is more often a diagnosis of exclusion - if its not another gastrointestinal condition, and it fits the symptom picture of IBS, then it is IBS. The current accepted criteria for diagnosing IBS is the Rome criteria (adopted in medical texts and by the American Gastroenterological Association). Their definition of IBS consists of: At least 12 weeks, which need not be consecutive, in the preceding 12 months of abdominal discomfort or pain that has two of three features: -Relieved with defecation and/or -Onset associated with a change in frequency of stool and/or -Onset associated with a change in form (appearance) of stool. The following symptoms support the diagnosis of IBS: -Abnormal bowel movement frequency (more than three per day or less than three per week), -Abnormal stool form (lumpy/hard or loose/water), -Abnormal stool passage (straining, urgency, or feeling of incomplete evacuation), -Mucous passed with stools, -Abdominal bloating or distension. There are few effective treatments for IBS. Pharmaceutical medications include anti-diarrheal agents and laxatives, some of which can be harmful if used repeatedly. Significant improvements can be made through dietary changes which can therefore reducing some trigger factors for IBS. It is also important to practice some stress reduction techniques such as breathing techniques, and positive psychology, as there is a direct link between stress and an aggravation of IBS symptoms. The most promising, long-lasting and side-effect free results in the treatment of IBS were based on a large clinical trial conducted at an Australian university, and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 1998. These results demonstrated a 64-76% improvement rate on all measures of IBS such as abdominal pain, distention and bowel habits. These results were achieved in a double-blind, placebo controlled clinical trial conducted by gastroenterologists and doctors. The remarkable positive results were achieved in the treatment group that received Chinese herbal treatments. This same formula can be purchased as pre-made capsules from select retailers, and it offers great hope for those struggling with IBS.

Irritable bowel syndrome is characterized by a group of symptoms in which abdominal pain or discomfort is associated with a change in bowel pattern, such as loose or more frequent bowel movements, diarrhea, and/or constipation.

Consult your doctor about OTC antidiarrheal meds for IBS treatment before taking anything. In addition, you shouldn't resort to antidiarrheals until at least 24 hours after experiencing diarrhea, as you don't want to stop your body from expelling toxins in the event your diarrhea is a result of bacteria such as food poisoning.

5 - Behavioural therapy Stress can actually trigger your IBS symptoms and make diarrhea worse, by causing your stomach to tense, leading to cramping and overall stomach upset. You can help reduce the regular stress in your life, and the stress you feel towards your IBS condition by engaging in:

Some gastrointestinal diseases can be seen and diagnosed with the naked eye, such as ulcers of the stomach. Thus, ulcers can be seen at surgery, on x-rays, and at endoscopies. Other diseases cannot be seen with the naked eye but can be seen and diagnosed with the microscope. For example, celiac disease and collagenous colitis are diagnosed by microscopic examination of biopsies of the small bowel and colon, respectively. In contrast, gastrointestinal functional diseases cannot be seen with the naked eye or with the microscope. In some instances, the abnormal function can be demonstrated by tests, for example, gastric emptying studies or antro-duodenal motility studies. However, these tests often are complex, are not widely available, and do not reliably detect the functional abnormalities. Accordingly, by default, functional gastrointestinal diseases are those involving the abnormal function of gastrointestinal organs in which abnormalities cannot be seen in the organs with either the naked eye or the microscope.

About the author:
Dr. Maia Dodds fucusses on the treatment of IBS. She has
compiled international clinical research and personal experience
in her new book 'Irritable Bowel Syndrome Improvement Program'.

For instance, avoiding/limiting foods high in refined, artificial or natural sugar can help alleviate diarrhea symptoms. This doesn't only include chocolate, caffeine, alcohol and sweets. It also means foods containing fructose such as honey and a variety of fruits. Foods high in sugar can act like a laxative to your body, especially for an IBS sufferer who already has a sensitive stomach.

 
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Treatment options are available to manage IBS???whether symptoms are mild, moderate, or severe.

For more information visit: Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatment

4 - Alternative Therapy Alternative therapies such as acupuncture, probiotics and herbal remedies can effectively reduce and alleviate diarrhea and its related symptoms in some IBS sufferers. Each of these methods is designed to assist the body in healing itself by providing it with stimulation (acupuncture), healthy gut bacteria (probiotics), or herbs. All work to aid in normal digestion.

While IBS is a major functional disease, it is important to mention a second major functional disease referred to as dyspepsia, or functional dyspepsia. The symptoms of dyspepsia are thought to originate from the upper gastrointestinal tract; the esophagus, stomach, and the first part of the small intestine. The symptoms include upper abdominal discomfort, bloating (the subjective sense of abdominal fullness without objective distension), or objective distension (swelling, or enlargement). The symptoms may or may not be related to meals. There may be nausea with or without vomiting and early satiety (a sense of fullness after eating only a small amount of food).

Question : MY 16-year-old son has been suffering from irritable bowel syndrome for the past four years. He has stomach cramps all the time, sometimes very painful. Due to this he has missed many days of school. He has seen many doctors and specialists and gone for the usual tests. Medication has not helped. He took a food intolerance test, which indicates he has intolerance for milk and potatoes.

Most individuals are surprised to learn they are not alone with symptoms of IBS. In fact, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects approximately 10-20% of the general population. It is the most common disease diagnosed by gastroenterologists (doctors who specialize in medical treatment of disorders of the stomach and intestines) and one of the most common disorders seen by primary care physicians.

Answer : YOU can try probiotics capsules that are lactose free, suitable for people suffering from milk intolerance. Other products that may help ease the symptoms include double strength fish oil containing marine fish oil derived from sardines and anchovies. Smaller fish such as these contain oils lower in environmental toxins than large predatory fish such as tuna and cod. Milk thistle and dandelion are good for constipation, besides being liver tonics.

- Stool thickeners -these contain fruit pectin and clay which absorb toxins and bacteria in the intestine to help thicken stool (I.E. Kaopectate)

- Antispasmodic - these slow spasms that occur in the intestine (I.E. Imodium). Although, antidiarrheals are usually effective, they may not help other symptoms such as bloating or abdominal discomfort. Furthermore, prolonged use of antidiarrheals can result in dry mouth, constipation, and other symptoms.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Dr. Maia Dodds is the author of ‘The Irritable Bowel Syndrome Improvement Program' See www.irritablebowelsyndromeip.com for details, further research and articles. Write directly at maia@irritablebowelsyndromeip.com - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The distinction between functional disease and non-functional disease may, in fact, be blurry. Thus, even functional diseases probably have associated biochemical or molecular abnormalities that ultimately will be able to be measured. For example, functional diseases of the stomach and intestines may be shown ultimately to be caused by reduced levels of normal chemicals within the gastrointestinal organs, the spinal cord, or the brain. Should a disease that is demonstrated to be due to a reduced chemical still be considered a functional disease? I think not. In this theoretical situation, we can't see the abnormality with the naked eye or the microscope, but we can measure it. If we can measure an associated or causative abnormality, the disease probably should no longer be considered functional.

You should also ask your doctor to test you for lactose intolerance, as an inability to properly digest milk sugar can cause diarrhea. 2 - OTC Antidiarrheal Drugs

The following are 5 treatment options for relieving IBS related diarrhea: 1 - Diet Control Before resorting to medications or alternative remedies, you should always consider your diet first. Although diet changes may not entirely cure you from diarrhea, it may help reduce the frequency of attacks. Therefore, you should monitor your diet by keeping a food diary and recording the symptoms you feel after eating different foods to determine which ones cause diarrhea and which ones don't.

If you are interested in learning about alternative treatments, talk to you health care provider first, and be sure to seek treatment from qualified practitioners.

Occasionally, diseases that are thought to be functional are ultimately found to be associated with abnormalities that can be seen. Then, the disease moves out of the functional category. An example of this would be Helicobacter pylori infection of the stomach. Many patients with mild upper intestinal symptoms who were thought to have abnormal function of the stomach or intestines have been found to have an infection of the stomach with Helicobacter pylori. This infection can be diagnosed by seeing the bacterium and the inflammation (gastritis) it causes under the microscope. When the patients are treated with antibiotics, the Helicobacter, gastritis, and symptoms disappear. Thus, recognition of Helicobacter pylori infection removed some patients' diseases from the functional category.

- Meditation exercises (I.E. Yoga)


- Relaxation therapy


- Hypnotherapy


- Cognitive behavioural therapy


It's also a good idea to distract yourself by taking part in regular activities you enjoy.

Sometimes irritable bowel syndrome is referred to as spastic colon, mucous colitis, spastic colitis, nervous stomach, or irritable colon. Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is generally classified as a "functional" disorder. A functional disorder refers to a disorder or disease where the primary abnormality is an altered physiological function (the way the body works), rather than an identifiable structural or biochemical cause. It characterizes a disorder that generally can not be diagnosed in a traditional way; that is, as an inflammatory, infectious, or structural abnormality that can be seen by commonly used examination, x-ray, or blood test.

Diet and lifestyle modifications can also help. Stick to a gluten-free diet. Avoid all foods made from wheat, rye, barley and oats except rice, millet and corn. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds and fish. Set aside time after breakfast or dinner for undisturbed visits to the toilet.

Despite the shortcomings of the term, functional, the concept of a functional abnormality is useful for approaching many of the symptoms originating from the muscular organs of the gastrointestinal tract. This concept applies particularly to those symptoms for which there are no associated abnormalities that can be seen with the naked eye or the microscope.

Irritable bowel syndrome is understood as a multi-faceted disorder. In people with IBS, symptoms result from what appears to be a disturbance in the interaction between the gut or intestines, the brain, and the autonomic nervous system that alters regulation of bowel motility (motor function) or sensory function.

Another medication that may be prescribed is Lotronex. This particular drug is designed to block the effect serotonin (chemical produced by the body) has on digestive system, and in so doing, soothes the colon and slows bowl movement frequency. Lotronex has been found to be successful at alleviating IBS symptoms including diarrhea, stomach discomfort and urgency.

Constipation can be a difficult IBS symptom to deal with, but so can diarrhea. People who suffer from diarrhea-predominant IBS experience frequent bowel movements of watery and/or loose stool. Other diarrhea-related symptoms include abdominal pain or discomfort, cramping, bloating, gas, nausea and dehydration.

About the author:
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