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What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

Aug 18, 2007
Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is generally classified as a "functional" disorder. A functional disorder refers to a disorder or disease where the primary abnormality is an altered physiological function (the way the body works), rather than an identifiable structural or biochemical cause. It characterizes a disorder that generally can not be diagnosed in a traditional way; that is, as an inflammatory, infectious, or structural abnormality that can be seen by commonly used examination, x-ray, or blood test.

Sometimes irritable bowel syndrome is referred to as spastic colon, mucous colitis, spastic colitis, nervous stomach, or irritable colon.

Most individuals are surprised to learn they are not alone with symptoms of IBS. In fact, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects approximately 10-20% of the general population. It is the most common disease diagnosed by gastroenterologists (doctors who specialize in medical treatment of disorders of the stomach and intestines) and one of the most common disorders seen by primary care physicians.

Not surprisingly, the IBS symptoms of abdominal pain and discomfort, bloating and constipation (and many times diarrhea as well) are associated with impaired quality of life and are the second most common cause of work-related absenteeism, behind the common cold. Consistent treatment of irritable bowel syndrome IBS helps improve quality of life, cuts worker absenteeism, and improves work productivity.

There are several treatments available for IBS. Several prescription medications are available, including Dicyclomine (a muscle relaxant) and Lomotil. Unfortunately, the FDA approved applications of these prescriptions are incredibly limited and there are many associated risks and side effects associated with their use. Common side effects common to both medications include dehydration, dry mouth, dizziness, and tiredness. Lomotil, in particular, acts like a narcotic- so care should be taken with its use, particularly for children.

A popular alternative solution is natural herbal remedies (such as Bowtrol) and diet management. This combination allows an individual to treat the underlying potential triggers of the condition and not just the symptoms. As an individual learns to identify various foods that may trigger or aggravate the IBS symptoms, they can then move to eliminate or reduce the consumption of those foods. At the same time, the herbal remedy is working to restore natural order to the digestive tract. This is a very effective combination.

Fiber can also be quite helpful to individuals that suffer from IBS. There are two main types of fiber that can be used to treat the different symptoms associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

The first type of fiber is called soluble fiber. This helps with both diarrhea and constipation. Some of the foods that contain soluble fiber are apples, beans, citrus fruits, and many garden vegetables. You can also buy supplements to enhance your intake of soluble fiber. Some popular brands are Fiberall, Metamucil, and Perdiem.

The second type of fiber is called insoluble fiber. This helps with constipation by bulking up the stool and adding more material to allow for easier passage through the digestive tract. You can find soluble fiber in many whole grain and wheat based products, as well as many vegetables.

Try to increase your daily fiber intake very slowly so to make sure your system can adjust. You will notice gas and bloating gradually decrease as you make these dietary changes. Try to eat a wide variety of foods so you can sample how each affects your symptoms.
About the Author
Bowtrol is the only natural remedy that is clinically proven effective for Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Provides total relief from constipation, diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating, and heartburn.

For more information visit: www.cure-ibs.com
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