ibs prescription - An introduction to irritable bowel syndrome
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An introduction to irritable bowel syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a very common condition, but in some ways it is still a mystery. There are many different theories about what causes the syndrome, and different doctors will give you different reasons for your illness ' anything from stress to bad bacteria to food intolerance. And once you have been diagnosed, there is no set form of treatment ' instead, sufferers tend to try two or three supplements or therapies to find a combination that works for them.


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The diagnosis There is no set test for IBS, and it is often called a diagnosis of 'exclusion'. This means that a doctor may rule out other bowel and stomach complaints such as celiac disease or inflammatory bowel disease before giving you a diagnosis of IBS.

Omega-3's are a type of essential fatty acids that the body cannot produce from what you eat. Therefore, you must get them in your daily diet in order to supply the many body functions that need them.

About the author:
Sophie Lee has had IBS for more than 15 years. She runs
Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatment
http://www.irritable-bowel-syndrome.ws where you can read
descriptions and reviews of the treatments available for IBS,
from drugs to alternative therapy.

It is very important that you receive a diagnosis of IBS from a medical professional rather than self-diagnosing, as bowel symptoms can be present in many other health conditions.

However, this does not mean it is any less real than, say, inflammatory bowel disease, it just means that doctors haven't come up with a proper test for it yet!

Vitamin B12 is Cobalamin. The functions of this vitamin have a lot to do with the correct functioning of the body cells, but more importantly, it helps in relieving the pain that is confined to the gastrointestinal tract.

The nervous system that controls the gastrointestinal organs, as with most other organs, contains both sensory and motor nerves. The sensory nerves continuously sense what is happening within the organ and relay this information to nerves in the organ's wall. From there, information can be relayed to the spinal cord and brain. The information is received and processed in the organ's wall, the spinal cord, or the brain. Then, based on this sensory input and the way the input is processed, commands (responses) are sent to the organ over the motor nerves. Two of the most common motor responses in the intestine are contraction or relaxation of the muscle of the organ and secretion of fluid and/or mucus into the organ.

Excellent vegetarian sources of omega 3 oils are flax seed oil and walnuts. Black currant seed oil, and evening primrose oil are also very good.

Currently, the best source of omega 3 fats from fish, is a purified fish oil in a nutritional supplement form. With the contaminants removed (mercury and others), you can have a daily dose and let omega-3's do what they have been reported to do well - balancing the immune system, decreasing inflammation, diminishing depression and anxiety and lowering some of the risk factors for heart disease.

This precious food is also healthy for normal skin, joints,and soft tissues. Omega 3 oils are anti-aging and anti-inflammatory. However, if you do suffer from IBS, you may experience some relief by including more omega 3's in your daily diet.

This syndrome is associated with emotional stresses like depression, hysteria, obsessive-compulsive traits, anxiety, resentment, marital conflicts, death of a loved one, or prolonged excessive anxiety over everyday matters. IBS occurs predominantly in women, at a ratio of 3:1 to men, and the average age of onset is 20-40.

Additional symptoms can include stomach pain (sometimes relieved by a bowel movement), bloating, nausea and a lot of gas. These symptoms generally go away for a short time before returning again, as IBS can work in cycles. Sufferers may experience a few weeks or even a few months of good health before the symptoms come back.

Omega 3 oils are the components of eicosanoids, hormone-like compounds that regulate blood pressure, clotting, and many other biochemical functions.

Wild caught cold water fish are an excellent source of omega 3 oils, but now that our industrialized world has contaminated ocean water, and consequently the fish and mammals that live in the oceans, it is recommended generally not to eat these fish more than 3-4 times a week. These recommendations can vary if you are pregnant, so check with your doctor.

There has been a great deal of controversy over the role that poor digestion and/or absorption of dietary sugars may play in aggravating the symptoms of IBS. Poor digestion of lactose, the sugar in milk, is very common as is poor absorption of fructose, a sweetener found in many processed foods. Poor digestion or absorption of these sugars could aggravate the symptoms of IBS since unabsorbed sugars often cause increased formation of gas.

Vitamin C or ascorbic acid, in particular, is a natural laxative, and can relieve you of constipation, another classic sign of IBS. However, excessive intake of Vitamin C can also lead to diarrhea and may cause bloating, thus taking it should be regulated and monitored.

Irritable bowel syndrome is believed to be due to the abnormal function (dysfunction) of the muscles of the organs of the gastrointestinal tract or the nerves controlling the organs. The nervous control of the gastrointestinal tract, however, is complex. A system of nerves runs the entire length of the gastrointestinal tract from the esophagus to the anus in the muscular walls of the organs. These nerves communicate with other nerves that travel to and from the spinal cord. Nerves within the spinal cord, in turn, travel to and from the brain. (The gastrointestinal tract is exceeded in the numbers of nerves it contains only by the spinal cord and brain.) Thus, the abnormal function of the nervous system in IBS may occur in a gastrointestinal muscular organ, the spinal cord, or the brain.

IBS is clearly a complicated issue, so here is a basic overview of the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of this disorder. The symptoms Although the symptoms of IBS vary from person to person, there are several symptoms which are typical of the illness. The most common symptom is either recurring diarrhea or recurring constipation (although some patients also have alternating diarrhea and constipation).

As already mentioned, abnormal function of the nerves of the gastrointestinal organs, at least theoretically, might occur in the organ, spinal cord, or brain. Moreover, the abnormalities might occur in the sensory nerves, the motor nerves, or at processing centers in the intestine, spinal cord, or brain. Some researchers argue that the cause of functional diseases is abnormalities in the function of the sensory nerves. For example, normal activities, such as stretching of the small intestine by food, may give rise to abnormal sensory signals that are sent to the spinal cord and brain, where they are perceived as pain.

The causes of irritable bowel syndrome are unclear. However, the Western diet full of refined and chemical foods, is implicated. Emotional and stress related factors are also as issue. If you suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome some of the following information may help you improve your situation.

Most people have symptoms in the milder range, and fortunately, an improved diet can usually relieve the suffering considerably. Contributing factors to an irritable bowel may be food allergies, altered bowel microflora (of the acidophilus type), intestinal parasites, lack of dietary fiber, and lack of digestive enzymes. Eating sugar, refined carbohydrates, and chemical non-foods (colorings and other additives, and foods made from petroleum products) is probably not going to improve the situation.

It is also good to stock on calcium. Calcium is not only good for your bones it can also relieve constipation and diarrhea when you are having IBS. Calcium carbonate, in particular, has anti-diarrheal properties, while calcium citrate has laxative properties. Whether you are experiencing diarrhea or constipation, calcium can help to make you feel a lot better. Just like, Vitamin C, however, the intake of calcium should also be regulated. The recommended dosage of either preparation is 500 mg or less.

 
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Sufferers sometimes find that their symptoms begin after a bout of food poisoning or an operation. Others date their symptoms back to a very stressful period in their lives, and some patients can see no clear reason for why their symptoms began.

Finally, there are several alternative therapies which can be effective for IBS. Hypnotherapy has proved very effective, and a special form called gut-directed hypnotherapy has been developed just for digestive problems. Acupuncture may also be worth looking into.

Vitamin A can help IBS Foods rich in Vitamin A could also help a person suffering from IBS, and there are quite a lot of them. However, the fruit and vegetable types are the ones that are going to be of most help to the patient.

Sometimes patients are given a colonoscopy, where a tiny camera is inserted into the intestines to look for abnormalities. In an IBS sufferer the colonoscopy won't detect any physical signs of disease ' IBS is often called a 'functional' disorder, because it seems to be caused by an alteration in the way the body functions rather than an identifiable cause such as inflammation.

You can also take iron, especially if you are having diarrhea because iron can cause constipation. Other vitamins that can help: Treat IBS with Vitamin B12

B Complex Vitamins for IBS All B complex vitamins, especially folic acid, can help so much in addressing the symptoms and effects of IBS. Dietary fiber is very important to people with IBS. It ensures them that the digestive processes inside their bodies are always within normal parameters.

Other researchers argue that the cause of functional diseases is abnormalities in the function of the motor nerves. For example, abnormal commands through the motor nerves might produce a painful spasm (contraction) of the muscles. Still others argue that abnormally functioning processing centers are responsible for functional diseases because they misinterpret normal sensations or send abnormal commands to the organ. In fact, some functional diseases may be due to sensory dysfunction, motor dysfunction, or both sensory and motor dysfunction. Still others may be due to abnormalities within the processing centers One area that is receiving a great deal of scientific attention is the potential role of gas produced by intestinal bacteria in patients with IBS. Studies have demonstrated that patients with IBS produce larger amounts of gas than individuals without IBS, and the gas may be retained longer in the small intestine. Among patients with IBS, abdominal size increases over the day, reaching a maximum in the evening and returning to baseline by the following morning. In individuals without IBS, there is no increase in abdominal size during the day.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS, is more widespread than we might suppose. The main symptom of IBS is abdominal pain and cramps after eating. A sufferer may also experience diarrhea, constipation, gas or bloating. Sometimes mucous may be seen in the feces. These symptoms usually are ongoing for at least 90 days before an IBS diagnosis is considered by a medical doctor. For this diagnosis, the symptoms are present in spite of the absence of true structural damage to the intestines.

If the drugs do not help you then you could try using a fiber supplement such as Citrucel to add bulk to your stool ' this can be helpful for both diarrhea and constipation. Also, there are other supplements such as Caltrate Plus which may be useful (Caltrate Plus contains calcium carbonate which can reduce diarrhea).

It may also be worth looking at your diet. A nutritionist can advise on ways to identify any particular food 'triggers' which may be setting off your symptoms, and also on whether you might have a food intolerance to something like gluten or lactose.

The treatment The first stage of treatment may involve any medications your doctor has given you to try. This could be an anti-spasmodic, which will relax the muscles in the gut walls, or perhaps a low dose of an anti-depressant, which can help to reduce the pain.

Among the annoying problems of Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS sufferers are dietary requirements. If you have IBS, you need to be choosy about the food that you eat. Fruits and vegetables are recommended when you have IBS, but certain foods, especially oily and spicy foods, can trigger the occurrence of one characteristic symptom of IBS which is diarrhea, and must therefore be avoided at all cost.

Although these abnormalities in production and transport of gas could give rise to some of the symptoms of IBS, much more work will need to be done before the role of intestinal gas in IBS is clear.

Dietary fat in healthy individuals causes food as well as gas to move more slowly through the stomach and small intestine. Some patients with IBS may even respond to dietary fat in an exaggerated fashion with greater slowing. Thus, dietary fat could and probably does aggravate the symptoms of IBS.

Fortunately, there are vitamins, minerals, and dietary supplements you can take to ease the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. If you have Vitamin C, calcium, and iron in your medicine cabinet, you can relieve yourself of IBS symptoms when they hit you.

While these vitamins and minerals can, indeed, help relieve symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, it is still best to consult your physician before taking any of these. Your physician knows better what your body needs, so always get your doctor's clearance first before you go to the drugstore.

You may also be given one of the new drugs specifically developed for IBS ' Lotronex for diarrhea sufferers and Zelnorm for constipation sufferers.

Vitamin C can help IBS Adequate amounts of Vitamin C are recommended for people suffering from IBS. Studies show that people who have high Vitamin C content in their bodies are less prone to developing the symptoms of IBS. This is made possible because Vitamin C is a very good antioxidant.

I hope this information stimulates your curiosity for more anti-aging education. If you have any health concerns, be sure to ask your health practitioner.

Research indicates that a person following a near vegetarian diet is less prone to developing IBS. Of all forms of Vitamin A, beta-carotene is most useful.

For more information visit: Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatment

Dianne M. Buxton is a mother, writer, and a ballet teacher, interested in anti-aging nutrition and lifestyles. If you find this info useful, you can read more here.


 
 
     
 
 





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