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IBS (irritable bowel syndrome)

Struggling with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) or uncomfortable bloating and gas production that just won’t seem to resolve?
Struggling with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) or uncomfortable bloating and gas production that just won’t seem to resolve? This affects more than 200,000 people a year in the US and much of the time doctors only provide symptom relief because ‘that is the guidelines’. Unfortunately the cookie cutter routine of medical practice today has been an assembly line of prescription medicine and at one point I even heard a doctor said he wouldn’t prescribe something that wasn’t a pharmaceutical. So good luck getting any preventive or wellness advice if that should be the case.

So often we are challenged with going beyond guidelines and personalizing care to meet the needs of our patients. I’m this case far too many people struggle with this but the light at the end of the tunnel is what can be done. In our practice we always tell people signs and symptoms are away the body is telling you something is off. often times is associated with low-grade inflammation which overtime can break down metabolism and cellular function leading to aging and disease. 

IBS is certainly one of these conditions as we know that a recent study found 70% of IBS patients have underlying overgrowth of harmful bacteria. That is that such bacteria produce gas as a byproduct of their metabolism. is the data out there one thing remains certain that a disruption in their healthy microbiome plays a significant role. Diets like low FODMAP i’ve often been tried with success which is essentially a diet low in: fructose and oligosaccharides. Among these include excluding items such as garlic, onions, fermented beverages, high sugar fruits, processed foods with high sugars along with wheat and dairy. 

These are typically not the most healthy foods for a variety of reasons which allow people to follow a more anti-inflammatory diet. Often times if not enough food sensitivity testing truly reveals what is causing your body’s immune system to go haywire.

Occasionally, despite this revolutionary approach some people may have relapse or still struggle.  So why could that be?
What recent research points to are two things that we see in practice and may be worth consideration:

  1. The Sinuses: people with a history of sinus problems including allergies may have disrupted microbiome, even despite sinus surgeries. They may contribute to IBS by way of post-nasal drip that happens at night while we are asleep. This is particularly the case in patients who produce low stomach acid and cannot kill the different microbes in our nostrils/sinuses and then drip into the back of the throat at night and go into our intestines, where they do not belong. This in turn may cause a vicious cycle of IBS if the sinuses aren’t treated as well as the gut at the same time. Something to think about.
  2. Emotional imbalance: sure enough the microbiome is shaped not only by physical and dietary habits but emotional ones too. We have direct evidence that stress produces the hormone cortisol which can damage the lining of our intestines las well as leads to imbalance of our gut microbiome diversity. This is a condition known as intestinal permeability or occasionally referred to as ‘leaky gut’. A very real phenomenon we actively diagnose with advanced testing and treat with the right approach.

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