If you’re someone that has experienced constant bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation or a slew of any other digestive ailments, you may be one of millions that suffers from irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS for short. It’s estimated that about 10 to 15 percent of people in the United States have IBS, with a maximum of 45 percent of people around the world. It can be debilitating at its most severe, so you have to be very careful about what you eat or drink if you’ve been diagnosed because there is currently no known cure.
Thankfully, IBS is not known to be a disease that will affect your lifespan, but it can negatively affect your quality of life. Depending on what your symptoms are with IBS, there are some different foods that you should try. Let’s take a closer look at which ones work the best.
For those that constantly get diarrhea that’s brought on by IBS, it’s likely that you’re getting too much fiber in your diet. You may also be lactose intolerant, eating too many fatty foods or chugging carbonated drinks that include alcohol. Try to control your portions so that you’re eating smaller meals throughout the day and stick to whole grains and dried fruits. There’s also a matter of temperature balance, trying to keep both your beverages and food around the same temperature if you’re eating and drinking at the same time.
People that suffer from the constipation side of IBS are more prone to be eating processed foods regularly and refined grains instead of whole grains. Unlike those with diarrhea, you should be focusing on increasing your daily fiber intake. Drinking more water is always a good thing, and try to add some prune juice, as well. Similarly to diarrhea sufferers, though, dried fruit will go a long way in helping you maintain comfortable regularity.
You don’t want to go without eating a proper amount of protein in your diet, so make sure that you’re adding the recommended amount. To do this, try to stick to leaner meats such as chicken and turkey and be mindful of how you’re preparing these meals. Baking, roasting or air frying will help relieve your IBS symptoms no matter what they are.
While they do have overall health benefits, people with IBS want to be careful with how often they’re eating vegetables that can cause gas. The obvious one on the list is legumes (beans), but there are other ones such as broccoli, brussels sprouts and chickpeas. This can cause severe abdominal pain if you’re eating these foods too often.
At this point, you can probably guess that a diet that’s filled with alcohol and fried foods won’t be good for your digestive system, and you’d be right. Try to limit these as much as possible, and cutting them out completely is suggested even if it doesn’t sound fun. Lastly, check with your doctor to make sure that you don’t have celiac disease or lactose intolerance, as many people confuse IBS with gluten intolerance. Your doctor can also provide a diet that you can stick to and enjoy a happy and healthy life.