Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a very common condition that can have a big impact on daily life, and scientists are busy trying to get to the bottom of why it happens and how to best combat it. Traditionally, IBS had been considered a disorder that causes massive gastrointestinal hypersensitivity, including cramping, pain and bloating. But recent health studies are suggesting new theories centred on additional etiological causes for the pathogenesis resulting from this disorder.
Some factors that are strongly associated with IBS include genetics, infection and inflammation caused by pathogenic bacteria, changes in the normal gut microbiota bacteria, food allergies and changes in the functioning of the immune system.
A recently published consumer marketing campaign showed an increasing interest on the part of doctors and patients in probiotics to boost gastrointestinal health. While rigorous research is ongoing, some people have reported alleviated symptoms using probiotics. Another problem is of course, food intolerances, a very common ailment that affects many people, a lot of whom will be unaware that they even have an intolerance.
What happens if it is less untreated?
If left untreated, food intolerance can cause a plethora of gastrointestinal symptoms that are associated with irritable bowel syndrome. You should consider getting tested by intolerancelab.co.uk to rule out this possibility. This way you can see what you may have issues with and what foods should be avoided.
Can changes in the bacterial flora contribute to IBS symptoms? Effectively, yes. Any type of infection can add to the misery. Indirect evidence shows that bacteria does in fact play a role in irritable bowel syndrome. Epidemiological studies have shown that up to a third of patients who have had an acute intestinal infection may continue to suffer from chronic gastrointestinal symptoms and irritable bowel syndrome.
With some people, irritable bowel syndrome starts with some type of infection, and this then progresses to chronic gastrointestinal problems.
Dietary changes are vital to taking control of this situation. You should consider firstly speaking to your doctor to see what changes can be made in a healthy way. Any drastic change could spark a problem with your weight, energy levels, sleeping patterns and even your sex drive. Therefore, take things slowly and look at ways to slowly introduce new foods or cut out other foods. Vegetables, fruit, legumes and lean meat are best. Anything overly acidic, fatty or sugary are going to exacerbate any existing problems, leaving you feeling worse. In this case, you should look to limit your intake. If you just can’t do without that crispy pork belly, then try cutting back a bit.
Sugar and alcohol are high up the list of foods to tread carefully with. You should consider also adding peppermint tea, ginger and cinnamon to your diet as these are known to be beneficial for gut health.
Besides, eating more healthily will pay off in other areas. For example, you’ll be able to better control your weight and feel more energetic.