What is Irritabl Bowel Syndrome?
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a type of bowel disease, also known by names such as spastic colon, irritable colon, spastic loit. It is a group of intestinal symptoms that typically occur together. The duration and severity of these symptoms vary from person to person. Although there are no studies showing that IBS increases the risk of gastrointestinal cancer, it has important effects on the quality of life.
What are IBS Symptoms?
Individuals with IBS typically have the following symptoms:
- Abdominal pain
- Bloating and gas
People with IBS can present with both constipation and diarrhea. Symptoms such as bloating and gas usually go away after you have a bowel movement.
Individuals with IBS may feel the pain like a cramp. After these cramps, you may experience the following changes.
- Some relief after bowel movement
- A change in the frequency of your bowel movements
- Changes in the appearance of your stools
Your doctor can diagnose IBS by evaluating your symptoms and confirm this by performing the following examinations.
- To determine if he has removed a specific food from his diet for a certain period of time to determine if he has any food allergies.
- Examining a stool sample to determine infection
- Having a blood test to check for celiac and anemia
- Performing bowel examination with colonoscopy
DRUG TREATMENT IN IBS
Although there is no cure for IBS, drug therapy is aimed at relieving symptoms. Initially, your doctor may have you make some lifestyle changes. These lifestyle changes need to be implemented prior to drug therapy.
LIFE STYLE CHANGES IN IBS
Participating in regular physical exercise
- Reducing caffeinated drinks that stimulate the gut
- Eating smaller portions
- Minimizing stress
- consuming probiotic foods that contain beneficial bacteria
- Avoiding deep fried or spicy foods
Diet Treatment in IBS
There is no standard diet therapy for patients with IBS. Since IBS symptoms differ between individuals, dietary approaches must also differ individually.
Medical intervention is very important in the treatment of IBS, but the treatment of this disease, which shows different symptoms in everyone, should also be personal. By arranging the common diets used in IBS according to your daily calorie needs, you can discover the best diet for you and minimize your symptoms with a lifestyle change.
Frequently Used Diets in IBS
1) High-Fiber Diet
Fibers help your bowel movements by increasing your stool volume. The average amount of fiber that an adult should take in a day is between 20-35 grams per day. Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are rich in fiber and help relieve constipation. However, if you are experiencing bloating from increased fiber intake, try consuming soluble fiber found only in fruits and vegetables instead of grains.
2) Low-Fiber Diet
If you constantly suffer from gas, bloating, and diarrhea, increased fiber intake can worsen your symptoms. As a first step, instead of removing fiber from your life completely, try soluble fiber sources found in foods such as apples, strawberries, carrots and buttermilk. Common sources of insoluble fiber include whole grains, nuts, tomatoes, raisins, broccoli, and cabbage. In order to reduce this effect, you can use anti-diarrhea drugs 30 minutes before fiber intake, but this method should only be applied in emergencies (in restaurants and on the move) and should not become a habit.
3) Gluten-Free Diet
Gluten is a protein found in grain products such as bread, bulgur, barley, rye, wheat, and pasta. This protein can damage the gut in people with gluten intolerance, and these individuals may face IBS. Therefore, removing gluten-containing foods such as bread, pasta, and wheat from the diet to follow a gluten-free diet can reduce symptoms. However, for individuals who want to consume, there are many gluten-free products such as bread, pasta and biscuits in the market.
4) Elimination Diet
This approach advocates avoiding certain foods for an extended period of time to see if IBS symptoms improve. According to the International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, these foods are in the top four in the list of foods to be eliminated.
- Insoluble fibers
5) Low-Fat Diet
High-fat foods are very low in fiber, which can lead to constipation, which can increase IBS symptoms. Individuals with IBS should consume meats, fruits, vegetables, grains and low-fat dairy products instead of eating fried foods and animal fats.
6) Low-FODMAP Diet
FODMAP means “Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides and Polyols” and are small carbohydrates that especially individuals with IBS cannot digest.
When foods high in FODMAPs reach the intestines, they are fermented and used as fuel by gut bacteria. Bacteria such as probiotics that are beneficial for the gut tend to produce methane, while the bacteria that feed them produce gas, another type of gas that can cause bloating, stomach cramps, pain and constipation.
FODMAPs are also osmotically active, which means they can draw water into your intestines and contribute to diarrhea.
To minimize these symptoms, eating foods low in FODMAPs may be an appropriate remedy.
Foods With High Fodmap Content
Fruits: Apples, applesauce, apricots, blackberries, blackberries, cherries, canned fruits, dates, figs, pears, peaches, watermelons.
Sweeteners: Fructose, honey, high fructose corn syrup, xylitol, mannitol, maltitol, sorbitol
Dairy: Milk (from cows, goats and sheep), ice cream, most yoghurt, sour cream, soft and fresh cheeses (cottage cheese, ricotta, etc.) and whey supplements
Vegetables: Artichoke, asparagus, broccoli, beets, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, onion, garlic, fennel, leek, mushroom, okra, peas, shallots
Legumes: Beans, chickpeas, lentils, red kidney beans, dry beans, soybeans
Wheat: Bread, pasta, cereals, crackers, biscuits
Other grains: Barley and rye
Beverages: Beer, fortified wines, soft drinks containing high fructose corn syrup, milk, soy milk, fruit juices
Foods You Can Consume as Alternatives on a Low-Fodmap Diet
Meats, fish and eggs: meat, poultry and fish are well tolerated as long as they do not add high FODMAP components during the marination process
All fats and oils
Nuts and seeds: Almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, sesame seeds (except pistachios or cashews)
Fruits: Unripe banana, blueberry, melon, grapefruit, grape, kiwi, lemon, limes, tangerine, cantaloupe (except watermelon), orange, raspberry, strawberry
Sweeteners: Maple syrup, molasses and stevia
Dairy: Lactose-free dairy products, hard cheeses
Vegetables: Bell pepper, carrot, celery, cucumber, eggplant, ginger, green beans, cabbage, lettuce, chives, parsnips, potatoes, radishes, spinach, spring onions (green only), zucchini, sweet potato, tomato, turnip , potatoes, water chestnuts, zucchini
Cereals: Corn, oats, rice, quinoa
Beverages: Water, tea, coffee, etc.
How should a low FODMAP diet be followed?
In the beginning, you should completely exclude all foods with high FODMAP content from your diet for a few weeks. Then you have to start over by trying some of them one by one. In addition to all these, in order to minimize IBS syndromes, you should drink plenty of water, exercise regularly and reduce your caffeine intake, and get help from a nutritionist for the most accurate guidance.