Natural IBS treatments offer alternatives to drugs

If you have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), I don’t have to tell you what all those symptoms do to your everyday life. Restricting your diet… running for the loo at breakneck speed… and feeling uncomfortable pretty much all of the time can make it seem impossible to enjoy a normal life.

Fortunately, a study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology backs up the use of safe, natural remedies to relieve symptoms of IBS.

These are a great alternative to the usual drug remedies for IBS, which some patients can’t tolerate or – rightly so – don’t want to run the risks of taking.

While there’s no “cure” (yet) for IBS, there are special antibiotics that some doctors prescribe, though they can cause dizziness, trouble sleeping, and redness or swelling in your face, chest, or hands and feet.

But in this latest meta-analysis of studies on bowel disorders, researchers found several natural and alternative treatments came out on top – including probiotics (in particular Saccharomyces boulardii and the Lactobacilli strains), prebiotics, and synbiotics.

You’ve probably heard a lot about probiotics, but you may be wondering what synbiotics are. To put it simply, they’re just a combination of pre-and probiotics, used in conjunction with one another.

When you take probiotics, you should also take prebiotics – which generally consist of the fibre that those “good bugs” you’re introducing into your gut use as food. If you don’t feed your newly-introduced friendly bacteria, it’s possible that they’ll either die off… or attack the mucus lining of your intestine , making your IBS symptoms WORSE.

You can take a synbiotic supplement, or you can achieve the same results by paying attention to food pairings. Combine probiotic foods like yogurt or kefir, sour pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi (Korean spicy pickled cabbage), or miso with plant-based fiber from foods like beans, cabbage, broccoli, peas, apples, and pears.

The study also backed the use of peppermint oil to ease abdominal pain, bloating, and colon spasms – which just confirms what the people who use it have known for generations. You can find it at your local health food store or in the vitamin section of your local grocery store or pharmacy.

Wishing you the best of health,

Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
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