Irritable Bowel Diet

We get many letters from people asking about an irritable bowel diet. Irritable bowel syndrome (also known as IBS) is a disorder of the bowel or colon. Symptoms include abdominal pain and cramping, gas, bloating, constipation, and/or diarrhea. Certain foods can trigger an attack. Often, an irritable bowel diet can help.

Common diets irritable bowel syndrome requires avoiding foods that are either stimulating or irritating to the bowel. Such foods can cause the common symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. That's why sticking to an irritable bowel syndrome diet can be so helpful.

Before making any major changes to your diet, check with your doctor or a nutritionist. Ask about common diets irritable bowel syndrome sufferers follow.

The irritable bowel diet works to prevent and relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.

Common diets irritable bowel syndrome patients follow would be to avoid or limit the following foods:

These foods can trigger an attack of IBS in some people. To find out what specific foods trigger your IBS, keep a food diary. Write down what you eat and which, if any, IBS symptoms follow. This way you can customize an irritable bowel diet that is right for you.

Food you should eat on an irritable bowel syndrome diet includes foods high in fiber, like fresh fruits and veggies, kidney and lima beans, and whole-grain bread. You should increase your fiber intake slowly over time. Suddenly adding a lot of fiber to your diet at one time can cause gas and bloating.

Drink plenty of water. Try for eight glasses per day.

Common diets irritable bowel syndrome responds well to include eating small meals frequently because large meals can contribute to symptoms like bloating and stomach pain. Also, eat slowly and chew your food well. Eating too quickly causes you to swallow some air, which causes gas.

Treatment for IBS consists of several things. First there are the common diets irritable bowel syndrome responds well to, as discussed earlier. The irritable bowel diet works as a preventative measure and also relieves symptoms when they do occur.

Medication is often used to treat IBS. Anti-spasmodic drugs reduce cramping and treat diarrhea. Stool softeners prevent and treat constipation. Some anti-depressant medications can also help to relieve symptoms. The major problem with anti-depressant and anti-spasmodic drugs is that they can actually cause constipation!

Over-the-counter medications may be useful, but should be used only under the supervision of a doctor. Some over-the-counter medications like laxatives can be habit-forming and are not safe for long-term use.

Many people prefer to use natural treatments in order to avoid the problems and side effects of traditional medication. There are a number of natural treatments available that prevent and relieve symptoms of IBS. Natural products often provide additional health benefits, as well.

See a doctor if you have symptoms of IBS, like gas, bloating, cramping, constipation and/or diarrhea over a period of several weeks. See your doctor sooner if symptoms are severe. Ask your doctor about an irritable bowel diet.

If you have any questions about an irritable bowel syndrome diet, please write to us.

More than irritable bowel diet on our diet for irritable bowel syndrome page

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