Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
The digestive tract is like a litmus test for your overall health. It’s here that your body absorbs the vital nutrients it needs; and it’s also in the digestive tract where early symptoms of chronic disease may present themselves.
There are many digestive disorders, but Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is by far the most common, affecting a whopping 15% of the North American population. The most common symptoms of IBS are continuous, and include abdominal pain and bloating, gas, nausea, low appetite, anxiety or depression, and painful, irregular bowel movements that alter between constipation and diarrhea. It’s an extremely uncomfortable and often embarrassing way to live.
Since so many other gastrointestinal conditions mimic IBS, it is important to see your naturopathic doctor to rule them out. Your ND will also help you identify and manage IBS triggers, such as food sensitivities, poor nutrition, stress, levels of ‘good bacteria’ and exercise. The goal of an individualized treatment program is to rebalance digestion, repair the gastrointestinal tract and get you back to leading a normal life.
A good exercise regimen is one therapy that improves the gut health of most patients suffering from inflammatory bowel disorders because routine has positive impacts on stress indicators, such as cortisol, in the body. When the body is under less stress, the digestive system can perform a better job.
Improving diet works to reduce effects for many patients. Acid-producing foods – such as eggs, meat, peas, carbonated drinks, alcohol, black teas, and coffee, to name just a few – tend to be inflammatory, stimulating, addictive, and comforting. Alkaline-producing goods – such as raw fruit, high water vegetables, tree nuts, and greens – have anti-inflammatory, detoxifying properties and help balance the harmful effects of consuming too much acid-producing food, especially in the long term.
Description Courtesy of The Ontario Association of Naturopathic Medicine