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Understanding Irritable Bowel Syndrome And The Steps To Recovery

Have you been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome without any hope for a full recovery?

Are you suffering with digestive problems but all of your lab tests are negative?

Have you been given meds but continue to suffer?

If you’re reading this article, you may be frustrated with your health journey and you are looking for real answers as to why you have been suffering with IBS symptoms for so long. We get it!

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is quite common among digestive sufferers and it can feel like a death sentence. It steals the quality of your life and disrupts one of the things we all need to do every day to survive—eat. More than 70% of IBS sufferers said their symptoms interfere with their everyday lives, with 46% saying they have missed work or school as a result.

You are not alone. According to the American College of Gastroenterology, in the United States, 10-15% of the adult population are estimated to suffer from IBS symptoms, while only 5-7% have been diagnosed. The college also mentioned that Irritable Bowel Syndrome is one of the most common disorders seen by primary care physicians and diagnosed by gastroenterologists. In addition, Canada is said to have one of the highest prevalence of IBS in the world at 18%.

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

IBS is a digestive disorder that is often accompanied by abdominal pain and changes in bowel movement, among other symptoms. Typical symptoms of IBS Include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Changes in stool texture and colour
  • Bloating and gas
  • Appetite loss
  • Nausea or heartburn
  • Acid reflux

IBS can also cause non-digestive symptoms such as:

  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue 
  • Headaches
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Headaches
  • Heart palpitations

If you’ve been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, you may be frustrated and wondering why this condition is so mysterious. It’s not uncommon for people with unexplained digestive symptoms not attributable to any particular cause to get labeled with IBS as there is no test to diagnose it. You may also be someone who has symptoms similar to Irritable Bowel Syndrome, but you were never diagnosed. 

There is hope…OK, we spent some time discussing the symptoms but here is some good news! Whether you are dealing with Irritable Bowel Syndrome or you have other digestive symptoms, you don’t have to suffer forever. Imagine a world where you can eat without any discomfort and enjoy life without scoping out nearby bathrooms so you can make a quick getaway should an attack occur. We get you.

Digestive issues can be easy to fix if you follow a plan and you are committed to it. Specific protocols will help calm the inflammation and get you on a path to recovery. These types of symptoms also respond well to naturopathic medicine and we’ll talk about this in a later section in this article.

“I Was Diagnosed With IBS, But My Lab Tests Are Negative”

Have all of your lab test results come back negative? Negative tests typically make people happy, but this may not be the case for you. If you’re a chronic illness sufferer who is desperately looking for answers, sometimes it’s worse to get a negative test because you know something is wrong and you want to find out what it is so you can start your recovery.

Women happy because she worked with a naturopathic doctor to get ride of her IBS symptoms.
“Yay! My lab tests are positive.”
This feeling of elation is only understood by chronic symptom sufferers.

We understand how frustrating this process can be but you can get on a road to recovery—and fast.

Recovering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome

When we see clients here at Neurvana Health who are dealing with common symptoms of IBS, we first take a look at their lab tests so we can rule out other more serious issues. The next step is to do more precise testing on gut markers to find out what is causing the symptoms.

Have you been eating healthy but your symptoms have not gone away? One of the tests we have clients do in response to gut issues is food sensitivity testing. If you are sensitive or allergic to specific foods, they could be causing inflammation which will create more of an issue. Even healthy foods can be problematic if you are sensitive or allergic to them.  

Aside from testing, we recommend that people who suffer from IBS symptoms avoid three inflammatory foods—sugar, gluten and dairy. We also recommend eating an anti-inflammatory diet, even if for a short period, which includes avoiding gluten, dairy, and sugar but also the nightshade vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and potatoes. We realize these foods can be tough for some people to avoid since they are heavily grown in gardens and enjoyed by many (Italian pasta and sauce anyone !?!) but the key here is to clean up the diet as much as possible to give your gut a chance to heal. 

The important thing to remember here is that even healthy foods can be an issue and result in gut inflammation if they are poisonous to your body. So an important part of the healing protocol is to eliminate those foods from your diet and then eat more anti-inflammatory foods to calm the gut down and begin a process of healing.

Eating healing foods that don't contain sugar, gluten or dairy can help to relieve IBS problems.
There are many beautiful anti-inflammatory foods that promote health and gut healing

Your diet won’t be restricted forever. Once your body heals, you will be able to re-introduce these foods back into your diet in moderation. But, overall staying away from gluten, dairy and sugar is a good choice for continued health and well-being and reducing inflammation in the body.

Additional protocols for IBS recovery

If you have digestive symptoms or leaky gut, it can be difficult to give advice for the masses because each individual is unique and their protocols for recovery may differ. But, typically with anyone who is suffering with IBS symptoms, in addition to removing foods you are allergic or sensitive to and going on an anti-inflammatory diet, other options can include getting on a high quality probiotic and fish oil. Also, based on your history and symptoms, you may also benefit from alkalinizing agents and a digestive enzyme. 

We’d love to chat with you to discuss how we can help you discover the root cause of your symptoms and finally get on a path to recovery. If you’d like to speak to one of our trained health advisers, a complementary 30-minute discovery call. We are here for you!

Want to recover from IBS?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is not a forever condition. You can recover with the proper tools and nutrition. Here at Neurvana Health, we’ve seen many clients recover from inflammation and gut issues to reclaim their quality of life. Book a 30 minute call it see if we’re the right fit.