- Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
- IBS Trigger Foods
- Best Foods for IBS
- IBS Diet Plans
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) – Fructose-Restricted Diet
- Help for Irritable Bowel Syndrome
“The best foods for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) health are those that are gentle on the digestive system. . .
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and which encourage “smooth passage” through the intestines. Thus, vegetables, fruit, and whole grains should be limited until your symptoms subside and you identify foods that are problematic for you” says nutritionist Joy Bauer, author of Food Cures.
SOLUBLE FIBER FOR IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME SUFFERERS
Joy Bauer is one of the country’s foremost nutritionists. She has a 4-step user-friendly program for Irritable Bowel Syndrome which is available in her book. She has great success in treating IBS with foods.
According to Joy: Fiber comes in two main varieties: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in water and turns into a kind of gooey, gummy consistency — think what happens to oatmeal after it sits in a pot of water for a time.
Insoluble fiber is tougher. It doesn’t dissolve, and pretty much keeps its form. Although insoluble fiber is generally healthy, it can be hard on the intestines of people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Insoluble fiber speeds food through the colon, something that many diarrhea-predominant IBS sufferers want to avoid.
People with constipation-predominant IBS may want to experiment with how much insoluble fiber they can eat without experiencing too much gas and bloating.
Soluble fiber, on the other hand, promotes gentle regularity, regardless of the type of IBS you have. Beans, lentils, broccoli, and cabbage are soluble fiber-rich foods, but they also act as potential triggers.
Most foods high in soluble fiber are considered safe for people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. The trick is to eat a variety of foods in moderation, without eating too much of one particular food or too much food in general at one time.
BEST FOODS FOR SOLUBLE FIBER FOR IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME:
Psyllium seeds (ground), oat and rice bran, oatmeal, barley, peas, apple, blackberries, pears, appricots, cantaloupe, strawberries, bananas, peaches, cooked carrots, cooked spinach, sweet potatoes, yams, white potatoes, avocado, raspberries, flaxseed (ground).
Frequently Asked Question: “I’ve read that I should take fiber supplements for my IBS. Are they helpful?
Joy Bauer’s response: Many experts recommend fiber supplements, but they are not always the best medicine. I say this because many of my clients have complained they’ve become more bloated and gassy after taking them. And this goes for both types — soluble and insoluble fiber supplements. That’s because people with IBS are very sensitive to fiber. When I treat clients, I start by asking about their symptoms. If it’s predominantly diarrhea, I’ll have them take a rest from most fiber-rich foods. Then, ever so slowly, we start adding it back — focusing first on the soluble type. If a client complains of persistent constipation, I immediately incorporate soluble fiber-rich foods with (along with some insoluble fiber) evenly sprinkled throughout the day. When my clients feel well enough, we add more. I can’t explain why, but when it comes to fiber, I’ve had more success with food than supplements. Skip the pills and instead, add fiber-rich foods (slowly!) along with lots of flat water to your diet.
MEALTIME GUIDELINES FOR IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME
For everyone fighting Irritable Bowel Syndrome, there are few mealtime guidelines that make your life easier:
- Try to eat meals at the same time each day to get your body used to schedule.
- Eat smaller, more frequent meals so you don’t overload your gut at any one time.
- Slow down — sit, relax, and take time to chew your food. Think of it as time invested in training your digestive system to behave.
Read next. . . IBS Diet Plans
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Source: Joy Bauer’s Food Cures, pp. 396-398