Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Naturopathic Suggestions

Irritable bowel syndrome as discussed in the gastrointestinal section, is a stressed bowel.

You know when you are irritable, something is stressing you. Whether it be emotional or physical, when something is not quite right, you become irritable.

Your bowel is no different.

The natural medicines used in treating IBS is all about eliminating causitive and stress factors.

Natural medicine requires four different steps to eliminating irritable bowel syndrome.

The Four Steps to Eliminating IBS

1. Eliminate Intolerant Foods

Recent studies have shown that a large proportion of IBS sufferers have a food intolerance rather than an allergy. Allergies are controlled by our immune system whereas a food intolerance is not.

A food intolerance simply means that your body does not approve of a particular food. An intolerance may appear at birth but many develop over time with repeted exposure of that food item.

The elimination diet is the cheapest and easiest way to find out what foods you are intolerant to. Click here to access the elimination diet.

2. Increase your Dietary Fibre

To relieve constipation in IBS, I strongly advise all patients to increase their dietary fibre in the form of bran, oatbran, psyllium, vegetables and fruit. If you find out that you are intolerant to wheat when you do the elimination diet, then please do not use wheat bran. Substitute with oatbran or psyllium, 5 grams per day.

NOTE: If you increase your dietary fibre, you must remember to increase your water intake as well.

Fibre absorbs water from your bowel wall so that the foecal matter is moist and pushes easily along the tract. If there is not enough water, then the increase in fibre may worsen the constipation.

How much water do you need to drink?

Drink 30mls per kilo of body weight.

E.g: 70kg = 2,100mls water daily

3. Eliminate/Treat Emotional Stress Factors

A large proportion of IBS sufferers suffer from problems with anxiety, depression and fatigue.

There are two schools of thought on the link between IBS and emotional problems:

1. That we bury our feelings in our gastrointestinal system.

2. That IBS occurs as a result of depression.

Whatever the cause of the emotional problems, they need to be addressed and can be quite effectively using natural medicines.

Natural Medicine For Depression/Stress

natural medicine for depression


SAMe has the ability to increase serotonin levels which ease depression. This is a fantastic 'feel good' natural medicine which lifts your spirits. I highly recommend SAMe for irritable bowel syndrome and depression.

2. Exercise

Increasing your fitness has long been known to improve depression and ease stress. Exercise increase the 'feel good' chemicals in the body and also tones muscles including the bowel. (the bowel is a muscle) This is a cheap and fantastic way of treating your irritable bowel.

3. Probiotics

Probiotics are very important in restoring health to your already compromised owel. Irritable bowel syndrome can be worsened by the overgrowth of yeast in the gastrointestinal system. It is important to supplement with a good probiotic when using natural medicines for IBS. To see why probiotics are a proven natural medicine for IBS, click here.

4. Herbal Medicines For Irritable Bowel Syndrome

1. Peppermint Oil

Peppermint Oil has long been used successfully for IBS. This oil reduces the pain and bloating of IBS as it is classified as a carminitive herb. Make sure when you choose a peppermint oil that you make sure it is enteric coated so the capsule can pass through the gut unchanged to arrive unchanged in the bowel, Pepogest Enteric Coated Peppermint Oil provides this.

2. Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Ginger is a fantastic carminitve herb for IBS. Ginger calms the bowel wall and helps to eliminate the cramping pain associated with IBS. Ginger is widely available in tablet form and is often used to calm the stomach in travel sickness. As a lot of people can't tolerate the taste of ginger, I would reccomend taking Daily Ginger as the ginger is enclosed in vcaps.

Recommended Useful IBS Links

Irritable Bowel Causes and Treatments
The cause of IBS is not known, and there is no cure for IBS. But, there are things you can do to feel better. For more information, browse for advice and reviews to learn how a cleansing diet can detox your body, help you lose weight and improve your digestive system!

In Summary

Many IBS patients have their own method of treatment. Not all patients have the same severity of symptoms and treatment depends on what foods are intolerant.

To find our what natural medicines have been clinically proven to help irritable bowel syndrome click here.

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Psyllium Husks 180 Vegicaps Psyllium Husks 180 Vegicaps are essential for normalising peristalsis.

Same (S-Adenosyl-L-Methionine) 400 MG 30 Tabs Same (S-Adenosyl-L-Methionine) 400 MG 30 Tabs can help relax an upset GI system.

4Life Probiotics by 4Life - 30 capsules/Blister Pack 4Life Probiotics by 4Life - 30 capsules/Blister Pack to prevent overgrowth of yeast in bowel.

Ginger By Christopher's Original Formulas - 100 Capsules Ginger By Christopher's Original Formulas - 100 Capsules calms an overactive bowel. Artichoke 500 MG 180 Caps Artichoke 500 MG 180 Caps relieves cramping and flatulence.