Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Occurs when muscles in your intestines contract faster or slower than normal. This causes pain, cramping, gassiness, sudden bouts of diarrhea, and constipation. There are two types of IBS. People who suffer from spastic colon IBS experience constipation, diarrhea, or both, and often have pain after eating. Painless diarrhea IBS involves the sudden onset of diarrhea during or after meals, or upon waking. Between 10 – 20% of the population has IBS at some time. The syndrome often starts in adolescents or young adults. It affects almost twice as many women as men, and is often associated with stress.
A naturopathic approach to treating someone with inflammatory bowel disease starts with a Comprehensive gastrointestinal restoration program –the 4 ‘R’ program.
- Removing offending substances from the diet. Food allergens and other materials that negatively influence the intestinal environment can cause localized irritation or trigger the release of damaging chemicals into general circulation, affection other tissues and organs. (IBD)
- Replacing digestive enzymes and stomach acid where necessary. Digestive factors and enzymes facilitate the breakdown of food. An insufficiency of these compounds is very common, especially as we age, which inhibits optimal digestion and utilization of nutrients, as well as the elimination of waste.
- Reinoculating the bowel with pre- and probiotics. Reintroducing health-promoting, “friendly” bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM® helps maintain a desirable balance of GI microflora. This balance is critical to intestinal tissue (mucosal) health, immune function, intestinal barrier function, and digestion.
- Regenerating the gastrointestinal mucosa through proper nutritional support. Regeneration of GI mucosal cells is necessary whenever there has been a loss of integrity of the GI mucosal structure or function, as may be caused by any GI insult.