Fat, Fructose May Worsen Gastric Upset
Unfortunately the root cause of IBS continues to elude medical scientists, but its symptoms are well-known to people who suffer from the disorder. The most common of these are general abdominal pain, inconsistent bowel movements, and severe cramping.
What Factors Elicit IBS?
Although the root cause is yet unknown, there are a number of different factors that can activate IBS:
- Antibiotics - These can wreak havoc with the "good" and "bad" bacteria in your stomach.
- Genetics - Relatives are twice as likely to have IBS.
- Food - Certain foods can negatively stimulate the colon. However, a high-fiber diet can help ease symptoms.
- Hormones - For women, the symptoms often become worse before and during their menstrual cycle.
- Stress - Stress can negatively affect nerve pathways, which, in turn, cause IBS symptoms to worsen.
Symptoms of IBS
Symptoms can include abdominal pain, cramping, bloating, diarrhea, constipation and gas. Symptoms can come and go, and vary for different people. Those with IBS usually experience either constipation or diarrhea.
Fructose and IBS
Studies have shown that at least one third to one half of people with IBS also suffer from fructose intolerance. Fructose intolerance is an intolerance to the simple sugar found in honey, many fruits and soda. It is also in high fructose corn syrup, which is a sweetener put in almost every liquid beverage, from soda to lemonade to bottled fruit juices. Symptoms of fructose intolerance are the same as symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and include pain, bloating, diarrhea and constipation. In some studies, those who removed fructose from their diet completely experienced relief from their IBS symptoms.
Fat and IBS
Studies have shown that people with IBS tend to consume more calories from fat than from carbohydrates, as is recommended. Ideally, those with IBS should make fat only twenty five percent of their diet. Systematic elimination of certain foods has been shown to help many with IBS. By eliminating then re-introducing a food to your diet, you can determine if a specific food it triggering your IBS. Many have found relief eliminating dairy or gluten (wheat) from their diets, as they are common irritants. Fructose and fat are two other groups that should be looked into.