How To Deal With Irritable Bowel Syndrome?4 min read
Irritable bowel syndrome is a common digestive tract disorder, and it occurs at a young age, more often in women than in men. It has a number of unpleasant symptoms: abdominal discomfort, frequent bloating, and constipation.
The exact causes of the syndrome are still unknown, and this circumstance has a negative impact on the choice of treatment methods. But still, on an individual basis, doctors can give recommendations that will help improve the quality of life.
Impact of Dietary Changes
Making simple dietary changes can help many patients cope with the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It is worth remembering that there is no special diet recommended for patients with this diagnosis. Moreover, the same recommendations may not be suitable for different patients.
The overall response to dietary modification will depend on the individual. Doctors recommend keeping a food diary to help identify foods that improve or worsen symptoms. Certain foods may cause symptoms to worsen, including:
- Fatty food
- Some dairy products
- Alcoholic drinks
- Coffee abuse
- Sweet sodas, juices, and other liquids
- Legumes and cabbage
According to some reports, foods containing coarse fiber, chocolate, nuts can also provoke a worsening of symptoms. Besides, addiction to alcohol and harmful substances may also lead to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In this condition, you must get rid of addiction through professional help. The first step is to undergo a proper addiction assessment for appropriate diagnosis. Only then you can get suitable treatment.
Now let’s find out which foods should be included in the diet and what is the best diet to follow?
How To Live With IBS?
Here is what you should eat with irritable bowel syndrome.
- Foods Rich In Fiber
A diet that includes foods rich in fiber promotes normal digestion and prevents constipation. These include fruits, vegetables, whole grain bread, pasta, etc. According to some recommendations, adult patients should eat 22-34 g of fiber per day. The main thing to remember is that you need to distribute this volume evenly throughout the day. Otherwise, the likelihood of flatulence, bloating, and other uncomfortable sensations increase.
- Low Carb Diet
Bloating is one of the symptoms of IBS. And to avoid it, a low-fermentable diet, including some carbohydrates, is beneficial. Their sources can be:
- Milk products
- Foods high in fructose
Some studies show that these foods increase the amount of water in the intestines, which can lead to loose stools and diarrhea. It is worth noting that the above products do not cause loose stools in everyone. Only observation, keeping a food diary and consulting a doctor will help identify potentially dangerous foods. And you just need to exclude that product from the diet.
- Exercise And Physical Activity
Being active and exercising helps to normalize bowel function, which can ultimately relieve the symptoms of IBS. Exercise helps stimulate normal bowel movements and reduce the effects of stress.
Due to physical inactivity, the symptoms of IBS may get even worse. Doctors recommend 20-30 minutes of active exercise 3-5 days a week. Following these recommendations can reduce abdominal pain and other unpleasant symptoms.
- Avoid Stress
Stress is an integral part of many people’s lives, but when it becomes chronic, it leads to a number of serious illnesses and can lead to complications. Many patients experience relief by following simple rules and practicing relaxation techniques.
Yoga has proven itself particularly well; breathing techniques offer a number of benefits for health. It benefits the whole body and not just the work of the intestines. Following these rules, you can achieve the following results:
- Reduction of anxiety, irritability
- Improving concentration
- Increase in labor productivity
- Improving the quality of sleep
It is important to note that stress relief breaks the vicious circle. Stress contributes to the development of IBS, and the syndrome, in turn, worsens the manifestation of stress. Meditation, breathing practices, doctor’s consultations, an active lifestyle, good sleep are healthy ways to prevent stress. You can also try going out with friends to a mall or restaurant. You will notice an improvement in IBS once you cope with stress.
What Medications Can A Doctor Prescribe?
It is still unknown what exactly provokes the symptoms of IBS, and this circumstance can make treatment somewhat difficult. But it is always aimed at stopping the cause, as well as eliminating the symptoms. If following all the recommendations of the doctor does not bring any results, then the doctor may prescribe medications. This include:
- Fiber supplements
- Osmotic laxatives
- Medications to help manage diarrhea
The choice of drugs depends on the specific clinical picture and the well-being of patients. Some of the research suggests that probiotics may reduce the symptoms of IBS. But the data is ambiguous.
In addition to medication, the doctor may also recommend psychological therapy. These treatments will help to reduce the harmful symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. Observations reveal that such practices are useful:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This type of therapy focuses on the thoughts, actions of the patient and methods of psychodynamic therapy. The main focus is on how emotions affect the symptoms of IBS. Through such therapy, the patients with IBS feel better and recover soon.
Practicing mindfulness can help you focus on your own feelings and avoid focusing on what they might mean. Being aware of your own body can help reduce IBS symptoms and make you feel better. Results show that such practices are helpful in combating irritable bowel syndrome.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to managing the symptoms of IBS. But the practice of diet, exercise, and stress will help reduce the manifestations of the syndrome and improve the quality of life. If these changes fail to address the problem of irritable bowel syndrome, you may consult a doctor. Through medication and different therapies, the symptoms of IBS will surely improve.