What is IBS and How to Treat It

You might have had a sensitive stomach your whole life, and thought that nothing could be done to fix it. You even might have looked at every meal with dread, thinking about how shortly after, you would be in extreme discomfort. For those who have been silently suffering from their stomach discomfort, you might have dietary needs that aren’t being addressed. 

When we are able to chart what we are eating and see a notable difference in our bodies behavior, we are more knowledged about what is causing the problem. However, for some, no matter how many charts or food journals you write, the symptoms of discomfort won’t go away. Unfortunately, for these few people with never-ending symptoms, your food issues might be a lot more complicated than just cutting one food group out of your diet.
For those who cut item after item from their diet to no avail, you might be someone with IBS — irritable bowel syndrome. This syndrome can develop from increased stress, stomach underdevelopment, or even simple genetics. IBS occurs when a subject eats certain foods that are difficult for their stomach to digest. Due to the small intestine not being able to digest the food properly, the food is sent to the large intestine where there is a build up of fowl-acting bacteria. In most cases of digestion, bacteria acts as an absorbent. However, with a weak, small intestine, bad bacteria overgrows and causes severe symptoms.
These symptoms include:
• Gas
• Bloating
• Diarherra
• Abdominal Pain
• Cramping
• Constipation
•Change in Bowel Movements
Unfortunately for those who are diagnosed with this syndrome, many foods are immediately off the table. Foods that are difficult to digest are considered High FODMAP. FODMAP is an acronym for Fermentable, Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. In short, certain foods contain molecules of sugars that need to be digested by bacteria in the intestine. Anyone with difficulty digesting these sugar molecules in the stomach, would have intense bowel symptoms. These foods include:
• Dairy Products
• Wheat-Based Foods
• Certain Vegetables
• Fruits
• Powdered Drinks
• Carbonated Drinks
• Certain Caffeinated Drinks
• Some Juices and Sweeteners
This might be a devastating diagnosis for some, mainly because most of their favorite foods are now off limits. Though many favorite foods are not FODMAP friendly, that does not mean that all of the above listed foods are completely banished from your diet. No one can complete cut out all FODMAP foods, but moderation is key if you would like to live a controlled, digestive life.

For example, recipes exist that are “FODMAP friendly” or easily digestible. Today, dietitians are making it easier on IBS patients because resources are now available to learn about and cook foods that are easier on their stomachs.
Certain online-based sites like, Casa de Sante, make access to low FODMAP cookbooks and IBS food facts easy for anyone wanting to learn. If you suffer from any of the above symptoms after years of dieting and journaling, it is time to try something new! By moving to a low FODMAP diet, your symptoms could vanish and you can get back to thinking about things more important than your digestive health. Visit Casa de Sante today and learn about how to treat IBS!

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