Nutrition – IBS, symptoms and causes

Article by Carolyn Leigh BSc, Registered Nutritionist at Lilliput Health

This week we are going to discuss IBS Irritable Bowel Syndrome, what it is, symptoms and causes.

So, what does IBS actually mean. In fact, it’s is simply an umbrella term for a host of underlying digestive problems so let’s start with the symptoms.

  • Wind
  • Bloating
  • Diarrhoea or loose frequent & urgent bowels movements
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bad breath
  • Unable to digest food properly

So what causes IBS? There are several causes of IBS and as individuals we may suffer from different symptoms and causes so today, we will discuss one of the root causes.

Food Intolerances/sensitivities. 

According to a number of recent reports food intolerance is a growing problem, with research suggesting one in five people are now affected by a food allergy or intolerance.

The exact reasons behind the increase in food intolerance cases are not yet fully understood, however a number of different theories have been proposed. For example, some experts believe that the stress of our modern lifestyles may be partly to blame, whilst others have emphasized the potential role of food additives and pollutants.

Common types of food intolerance include:

  • Dairy intolerance – this is one of the most common types of food intolerance and is often caused by an inability to digest lactose, a sugar contained in animal milk.
  • Wheat intolerance – wheat intolerance involves sensitivity to products containing wheat, such as bread and pasta.
  • Yeast intolerance – some people are also intolerant to yeast, which is found in a wide variety of foods, including numerous baked goods such as bread and croissants, as well as alcohol and even stock cubes.
  • Histamine intolerance – histamine is a naturally occurring chemical found in certain foods such as vinegar, cheese and processed meats. Whilst we all have enzymes in our bodies capable of breaking down any histamine we absorb from our diet, some individuals have lower levels of this important enzyme and consequently can experience allergy-like symptoms when they consume large amount of foods rich in histamine.

If you are suffering with IBS and suspect food intolerances then contact the clinic to make an appointment with our registered Nutritionist Carolyn who has years of experience successfully treating IBS.


Nutrition tip of the week.

We are still not quite out of winter just yet so make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D. Apart from sunshine good food sources are fatty foods such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, mushrooms & eggs