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Understanding Irritable Bowel Syndrome and What To Do About It

Guest Post By Ren’e Matheny-Spires

Do you have IBS and don’t know what to do about it? Is your IBS keeping you from living life?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome has many names. It can be called “Spastic colitis”, “nervous Indigestion”, “mucous colitis”, and “intestinal neurosis”,  and finally in short we will address it as “IBS”.

 

IBS is not a disease it is a functional disorder. It is treatable by diet, lifestyle changes, stress reduction, nutrition, and movement.  It affects 55 million Americans a year.  It can affect you in different ways. Some report that any number of the following symptoms. Abdominal pain, bloating, more frequent bowel movements with pain, or bowel movements  that relieves pain sensations, constipation, diarrhea, excessive production of mucus in the colon, indigestion, flatulence, nausea, anorexia, anxiety and or depression.

IBS is usually associated with a food allergy, stress, or a lack of fiber and water in the diet.  I want to stress right here that just because you have symptoms of IBS does not mean that you have it. There are many things that mimic IBS. (cancer, antibiotic or antacid over usage, diverticular disease,  infectious diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal candidiasis, lactose intolerance, laxative abuse, pancreatic deficiency, celiac disease, fecal impaction, adrenal insufficiency, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, reactions to coffee, teas or carbonated drinks and sugars). You see there could be many different things that could be wrong. Make sure you get your diagnosis from a doctor.

 

So, you have IBS and you’re wondering just what can I do about it. You should really consult a professional like a holistic health counselor. Why? Because, they will work with you and your doctor if you choose. They will guide you through a diet and lifestyle change gradually. It will take about 6 months to really put your IBS to rest.

 

We want to start by:

  1. Drinking more water.
  2. Increasing your fiber.
  3. Keeping a daily diary. Keep track of what you ate or drank and how it affected you. You should also include and medication, vitamins & probiotics.
  4. Eat more cooked greens
  5. ELIMINATE the following items:
  • Coffee, caffeinated teas, carbonated drinks, alcohol, white flour, sugar, artificial sweeteners and if you have allergies to dairy and wheat eliminate them. You should consult with a doctor or health counselor to try an elimination diet to see if food allergies exist.
  • Eliminate eating fast. Chew your food at least 25 times. This helps aid in digesting your food better.

 

YOUR PLATE:

What your plate should look like is ½ the plate should be cooked greens. Then ¼ of the plate should be a complex carbohydrate (like brown rice or spelt noodles) the other ¼ should be a protein (beans, fish, meat, chicken)  with a healthy fat like avocado, olive oil, or seeds.

The easy way to add fiber to your diet is ground up flax seeds. You can add these to your breakfast lunch or dinner. They will keep your system clean from top to bottom.

Eat more organic fruits and vegetables. Keep it balanced though.

 

BLOATING

For those of you who suffer from abdominal pain and or bloating. I want to give you some simple tricks that can help. The easiest one is lying down with a hot water bottle. You should try sleeping with a hot water bottle every night as well. This helps to aid in passing a bowel movement and or trapped gas. It does this by relaxing the muscles. The other one is if your able to do a few sit ups you might dislodge the gas pocket. Most of the time the pain is gas. You can also by a anti-gas supplement from your local health food store.  You can also take a probiotoc everyday as it helps in creating good intestinal balance.

 

LIFE STYLE CHANGES

You definitely need to implement some life style changes. Start by walking. You can start by just taking a leisure stroll for 20 minutes a day. Your movement will cause movement.

STRESSED? Then try mediation or yoga relaxation therapy or get a message.

Early childhood trauma or sexual abuse seek a mental health counselor. You need someone to talk to. You need to  release this from inside of you. When you hold your thoughts or feelings in. It can cause digestive issues. They can show them shelves in many ways and one way is IBS.

 

I hope that you found this article helpful. If you should need any further assistance please contact me at ReneMatheny@yahoo.com. You can also visit our website New Seasons Health Counseling and join us in our webinars or talks on IBS.


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Military Spouse. Mom. Blogger. Social Media Addict. Shutterbug. Globe Trotter. Marketing. PR. Nerd. Sour Candy. Unicorns. Mermaids.

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  1. Spiragirl says:

    I suffered with IBS for years, the pain and bloating became so bad that I had to do something about it. I switched to a paleo diet and my IBS literally vanished. I am still in shock about the transformation!