It’s common to think that if you suffer from IBS, the only way to fix your gut and feel normal again is to take medication. But medication doesn’t actually fix the real cause of IBS – it merely masks the symptoms.
Natural remedies are extremely effective at determining the real cause of your gut problem, and finding a solution that will have you feeling better again without the help of medication. Surprisingly, when a person’s IBS is resolved, their symptoms of fatigue, anxiety, depression and brain fog tend to lift.
There are four steps to treating IBS naturally:
1. Get tested – work out if your condition really is IBS.
Quite often I see people who have been told they have IBS but haven’t been properly diagnosed. IBS is diagnosed by a process of elimination – testing for other serious gut issues to rule them out.
I recommend three tests – live blood test, dry blood test and RBTI Analysis.
2. Find your triggers – and remove them from your diet
There are two ways to find out which foods trigger your IBS – a six-week modified elimination diet or a food intolerance test. The severity of your symptoms usually determines which path you will take.
Our Mullen Health Modified Elimination Diet involves removing gluten, dairy, sugar and yeast from your diet, plus a few other items that we have found to be problematic for IBS sufferers. At the end of the six weeks, we slowly reintroduce these foods to determine which foods you have a problem with. Another diet commonly used is the FODMAP diet, which we will often use in combination with our Mullen Health Modified Elimination Diet.
The second method is our food intolerance testing, which I have outlined in a previous blog.
3. Boost healthy bacteria and fibre in your gut
Good bacteria calm down the symptoms of IBS by acting as an anti-inflammatory, so it is crucial to boost these healthy bacteria as much as possible.The best way to do this is by taking a high-quality probiotic supplement as well as adding fermented foods to your diet, such as sauerkraut, kimchi, organic miso and coconut yogurt.
Western diets have nowhere near enough fibre, which is important to both feed our good bacteria and to help form healthy stools. The best sources of fibre are organic psyllium husk (not the sugary chemist versions) and organic flaxseeds (buy these whole, grind the amount you need for a week and keep in the fridge). Flaxseed has the added benefit of providing essential nutrients for feeding good bacteria.
While Inner Health plus contains two general strains of probiotic, Probex contains a very specific strain of bacteria, Lactobacillus Plantarum 299v, which has been clinically proven to assist in the management of medically diagnosed IBS, relieving bloating, intestinal pain and inflammation.
4. Stress less!
From my experience of dealing with IBS, stress and unresolved emotional issues play a major role in triggering symptoms. I would go so far as to say 50% of the symptoms are due to stress, while the other half are due to diet and lifestyle.
Reducing your stress levels can be difficult, as they are often caused by outside factors. However, I recommend scheduling time out each day to ‘de-stress’ with whatever calms you – yoga, swimming, walking, a hot bath, reading, meditation, or whatever makes you feel happy and at peace.
If you have any questions, you can call us to book a FREE 15-minute chat with one of our Naturopaths to see how we can help you. Call now on (02) 4961 4075.
Yours in health,
Did you know that natural health can help you manage and treat IBS?
Download our free guide on treating IBS naturally by clicking here.
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