Irritable Bowel Syndrome Diet
How a diet for IBS can help
It's important to stick to a careful diet for irritable bowel syndrome, since the condition is so easily triggered by food. The right IBS diet can help you control painful and irritating symptoms such as bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. You need to be careful about both the foods you avoid and the foods you eat, since some foods can be triggers for IBS symptoms, while others may actually help reduce the severity and frequency of symptoms.
Your diet for IBS will also have to be customized to your body. Some foods act as triggers for some patients, while others aren't bothered by the same menu. Finding the right irritable bowel diet can be a trial and error process, but once you've figured out how certain foods affect your condition, you'll be able to eat more confidently.
Tips for an Irritable Bowel Syndrome Diet
An irritable bowel syndrome diet must be based on minimizing the consumption of trigger foods, which either stimulate or irritate your gastric system, bringing on the painful IBS symptoms. Fat, insoluble fiber, caffeine, alcohol and carbonation are all common culprits. However, as each IBS patient is different, you may find that any of these categories don't affect you as much as others. At the same time, you may find yourself more sensitive to any one of them.
Keep a food diary as you're discovering what types of foods trigger or relieve your IBS symptoms. Since the IBS diet is necessarily different for each patient, a doctor can only offer you recommendations and generalizations; it's up to you to figure out how to manage your own condition.
Also, make sure to keep hydrated. Drinking lots of water can reduce constipation, which can also lessen bloating and cramping. If you're suffering from a bout of diarrhea, you should continue to drink plenty of water to replace all the fluids you're losing.
A Diet for IBS is About More Than Food
A diet for IBS involves more than what you are or aren't eating. High stress levels can also trigger a bout with IBS, so you should take care to minimize strain in your life. While it's not always possible to live stress-free, it is possible to learn stress management techniques that can stop the strain from heading straight to your stomach.
Meal time should also be relaxed and calm. Eat slowly and carefully, and maintain a relaxed and quiet atmosphere. Stressed or rushed eating disrupts proper digestion, which increases the instances of IBS symptoms.