What are some ways to deal with IBS?

I would love to hear some tips (especially from those who suffer from it) on how to deal with IBS. I've had it for a year or 2 now, and it's so frustrating to not be able to have a bowel movement without the nausea,cramping and/or occasional anxiety! What are some tips to help prevent/treat these symptoms. Preferably, without the use of meds- I'm seeking natural, holistic alternatives. Serious answers only please.

** I currently take ginger 1-2 times a day, along with my other vitamins. I am also lactose intolerant and try to use lactaid with every meal with dairy.**

15 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Hi SDMiller

    Here are some action steps to take.


    IBS can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor diet and nutrition, food allergies, imbalanced levels of hydrochloric acid, impaired immunity, infections, lack of exercise, pharmaceutical drugs, and stress.

    Quick Action Plan for IBS

    1. Avoid all sugars, refined flour products, and carbohydrates, milk and dairy products, processed foods that contain preservatives and artificial sweeteners, alcohol, hydrogenated and trans-fatty oils, as well as foods that are common allergens.

    2. Emphasize organic, fresh vegetables and non-citrus fruits, organic grains, as well as organic, free-range meats and poultry and wild-caught fish.

    3. Drink plenty of pure, filtered water throughout the day.

    Cleansing and Detoxification therapy such as short fasts, elimination diets, and colonics.

    4. Enteric-coated peppermint oil and aloe vera juice.

    5. Soothing baths two to five nights a week, as well as alternating hot and cold water packs placed over the abdomen.

    6. Use Probiotics and soil-based organisms.

    7. Therapeutic juices include wheatgrass juice; cabbage, papaya, and carrot juice.

    8. Stress reduction techniques, such as biofeedback, hypnosis, and meditation.

    9. If you are a smoker, stop and refrain from taking aspirin or other NSAIDs.

    10. Examine the possibility of withheld emotions as the cause of your symptoms and get support through emotional and physical expression, especially movement therapies such as NIA, Qi gong, Yoga or Total Integration Therapy to name a few options.

    Best of health to you

    Source(s): experienced healing and educating many years healmarketplace.com
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  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Do you have any other symptoms just besides the pain? I was diagnosed with IBS yesterday after a colonoscopy but I sort of already knew that I had it. It all depends on what kind of IBS you have... whether it's Alternating, Diarrhea, &/or constipation primarily. I also have pains under my ribs sometimes and had an ultrasound done to check my gallbladder... the pain was also in my back. No gallbladder problems though... but I do have a problem with "D" a lot... and my doctor gave me a prescription for Bentyl to take before meals... I haven't used it long enough to see if it's actually helping but I have a relative that takes it and they say that it does help them, but of course everyone is different. Wal Mart/Sams in my area has the generic of it on their $4.00 list for 60 pills, so that's really not bad so I hope it helps. It also depends on how severe your case is. I know some people that get by on just Imodium and diet changes and I've read about some online that can't even leave their home. Some can tolerate foods better than others... the best thing I have done is research and read about it online. There a lot of choices out there to help control the symptoms... but unfortunately usually there's really nothing that can be done about it. You just make the symptoms as tolerable as you can. I wish I could be of more help but like I said I was just diagnosed yesterday and I'm out on the search for help also. Mine is unpredictable. Sometimes I eat something that I think is "safe" and I'm left in terrible pain; sometimes I eat something and KNOW it's going to make me sick and I'm fine... other times I don't even eat and I get sick. Usually what I've heard is you make a food diary and keep up with what & when you eat and when your symptoms come on. Usually a blanket statement that everyone with IBS can adhere to is stay away from fatty/greasy/fried foods... they are almost always the culprit for pain...

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I had IBS back in the day but now I have the opposite... Colonic Inertia! Basically you avoid the same things you would avoid for acid reflux... Caffine, Spicies, Fried Foods, etc! You dont want to aggitate the colon! Some GI's that I had in the past actually had me on fibers just to keep it in regulation! Dairy definatley can set it off so its good that you are staying away! My GI always had me keep a food and poop journal... Mark down what you ate and how many bowel movements you had daily and rate the issue! This way you can compare your diet and bowel movements to come to a comprimise! Sometimes heat is good for the cramping... a GI suggested! Its good that you arent taking the medication they have more side affects than healing qualities! Stress can activate your IBS so try to relax more and breathe! Hang in there sweetie more people have IBS then you know!

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  • 1 decade ago

    I've had IBS for years. Although I was advised to take lots of fiber, I had NO luck whatsoever with doing so. I have found that stress is the key factor for me. I had to "teach" myself to let things roll over me for the most part, when something bad happens I force it out of my mind -- and this controlls my IBS. If I let myself get worked up over something it inevitably flares up again.

    Peppermint tea is a really good suggestion -- and it tastes great, too! Peppermint has been used for centuries to help calm the stomach and bowels.

    Avoid highly spicy foods, which can increase the likelihood of a flare-up. When you feel that it's flaring up (I can usually tell a day or two in advance) try to avoid any foods that you know tend to irritate you, as well as dairy products (I'm not lactose intolerant, but they can cause a flare-up at times nonetheless!)

    Try adding dried fruits like prunes and raisins to your diet as well, in small quantities. Though they don't help with the cramps, they'll help keep you regular so it doesn't get quite as bad.

    Source(s): Personal experience.
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  • 1 decade ago

    I have had IBS for over 10 years now. The first 5-6 years were the worst. My doctor kept putting me on antidepressants as he was saying it was my head making my tummy upset and I kept telling him the IBS was making my head sick, but he would not listen. so i went to another doctor and he put me on another antidepressant - i could not believe it after trying 6-7 antidepressants and only making my IBS worse I almost gave up until my new doctor prescribed AVANZA I was better in a week, i could not believe it....it felt soooooo good to be able to do a normal poo for a change. It was so bad for me I suffered major depression as it can ruin your life..you cant go anywhere, you cant play with your kids, you cant go to work, your ALWAYS sick.

    At first it was so good I was taking it everyday..then i actually started piling on the weight. I was always a skinny minny, now I am 10kg overweight. I started cutting down to 1-2 a week and when i feel anxious, upset or nervous I take an extra. You should ask your doctor about this antidepresant. Its worth a shot. It may not work for you, but it sure turned my life around.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    There have been some excellent suggestions - all very valid. I would like to add that, from my personal experience, taking slippery elm supplements really helps. You need to take quite a high dose - around 8 tablets 2 x a day. Also a good essential fatty acid supplement, a good multi-vitamin/mineral (as frequent diarrhoea can cause nutritional deficiencies), psyllium fibre, probiotics and a low reactive diet (as others have described). Also worth considering is a tissue salt known as SCF. IBS is also very strongly correlated with emotional/stress status so it is worth considering yoga, meditation, stress management - whatever helps you relax.

    Source(s): Personal experience and experience as a chiropractor and naturopath.
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  • 1 decade ago

    Good for you!! Most medications these days contain so many chemicals it's really not funny. For nausea, use some STRONG peppermint or winter-mint tea. Boil the stuff directly in the boiling pot, NOT the tea kettle as this is very difficult to clean out later. The mints work nicely to also alleviate the cramping to some extent, unfortunately, not completely.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I have IBS one of my biggest helps is a strong probiotic called VSL #3.

    Things that are antisapsmodic like peppermint and chamomile are helpful.



    acacia fiber is good slowly fermenting pure soluble fiber With IBS you want to make sure you fiber is soluble not insoluble fiber since insoluble fiber is a trigger! outmeal, pasta, rice ptoatoes, tapioca, bananans are soluble fiber foods

    bran greens kernal corn...is insoluble fiber...so can be a stimulant and you don't want to take a lone without some soluble fiber.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Hello My mom has had IBS for thirty years and the only thing that seems to help is Earthing her body when she sleeps.

    FYI.........One of the most important health discoveries of our time may prove to be the thin layer of free electrons on the earth’s surface. The California Institute of Human Sciences has recently demonstrated that connecting our bodies to the earth restores the natural electron balance within our bodies1. Studies are showing a wide range of benefits from direct contact with the earth: rapid reduction of pain and inflammation; relief from sleep disorders; and calming of a variety of stress-related health problems. Including I. B. S.

    Best Wishes

    P.S. feel free to contact me if you have any questions

    Source(s): www.sleepgrounded.com read the research summary and other associated articles on the web on the subject of Earthing
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  • 1 decade ago

    Soluble fiber like Fiber-rific or Benefiber. I also heard that drinking aloe vera juice also helps. I'm going through the exact same thing...its not fun at all. :o(

    Added....I've also been taking Buscopan to relieve spasms, I know its not holistic, but it really helps especially when you need to leave the house.

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