Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a painful syndrome that is characterized by abdominal bloating, diarrhea, constipation, cramping, and belly pain. It mainly affects the large intestine, in which the stool is collected. IBS is not a disease, but a condition and there is no cure, only treatment options to manage life with IBS a little better. Women are affected by Irritable Bowel Syndrome more often than men, and many women experience an unwelcome worsening of these symptoms around the time of their menstrual periods.
Although there is no cure for Irritable Bowel Syndrome, there are many proactive steps that female patients can take to increase their quality of life with the condition — and the great news is that many of them don't require your doctor's involvement at all. Many of them are even completely free; they just need you to commit some time.
12. Trim the fat.
Eliminate foods that are fatty or have lots of oils and margarine. These make your colon contract violently, leading to painful diarrhea and bloating. This choice has the added benefit of improving your overall health.
13. Pass on spicy foods.
The Capsaicin in hot peppers and spices makes your colon go into spasms, which could lead to diarrhea that can last very long if you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Avoid these peppers if at all possible.
14. Don’t chew gum or eat candy that contains artificial sweeteners.
Two ingredients in these are sorbitol and mannitol
, both which have a laxative effect
. If you are diarrhea-prone, these ingredients can make the condition worse.
15. Stop smoking and avoid second-hand smoke.
Nicotine is known to contribute to IBS flare-ups. In addition to this, when you inhale, you swallow air and this leads to bloating from the excess air in the gut.
16. Take a fiber supplement that contains psyllium.
Unlike chemical laxatives, psyllim can be used long-term for symptoms like bloating and diarrhea.
17. Eat small frequent meals.
Avoid eating that one large meal at the end of the day. This can overstimulate your digestive system and lead to symptom flare-ups.
18. Eat yogurt.
Diarrhea will drain out the good bacteria in your bowel that prevents other harmful bacteria from growing in excess. If you are having lots of diarrhea, eat plenty of yogurt to put the bacteria back where it belongs
19. Take supplements of acidophilus.
The usual daily dosage is one pill and this contains around 1 to 2 billion live organisms. Take acidophilus on an empty stomach for best results.
20. Drink tea.
Peppermint tea reduces bowel spasms by relaxing your intestines
. It also is known to relieve gas pains. Make sure you choose a kind that contains real peppermint rather than peppermint flavoring. Ginger tea
is good too, as ginger soothes many of the symptoms of IBS.
21. Take peppermint-oil capsules.
Many with IBS find that these can be used instead of drinking tea to relieve the painful cramping of IBS
. You have to take these a few times a day, preferably between meals.
22. Get into a healthy sleep pattern.
Don’t neglect sleep or have an inconsistent sleep schedule. This tends to throw off your entire system and affects digestion. Create a positive sleep environment by turning off the TV at night, avoiding working from the bedroom, and keeping the temperature set consistently. Many find that soothing music or a soft humming noise allows relaxation and good sleep.
23. Take medications as prescribed.
Getting the pill filled and setting it in your bathroom cabinet will not help. You should take these medications just as they are prescribed for maximum benefits.