Please forward this error screen to sharedip-1071802087. Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a condition that affects the bowels, otherwise known as the large intestine or colon. The area of the digestive system that stores and moves the stool to the rectum to be eliminated. Because diagnostic testing doesn’t reveal any actual inflammation or damage to tissue within the colon, it is considered a functional gastrointestinal disorder. Meaning the problem lies in how the system functions and not an actual disease process.
The walls of the bowel are lined with muscles that contract and relax. This movement, which is called peristalsis, is what moves your food from your stomach and through the intestinal tract and out to the rectum to be emptied. In a healthy colon, these muscles work in a synchronized tempo and move smoothly through the process. However, in IBS, the contractions of the muscles fail to work properly. They may be stronger than normal which results in food being pushed through the intestines too quickly, resulting in diarrhea and cramping or they may be slower than average and the food moves too slowly through the colon, which causes stool to dry out and turn hard, which leads to constipation and pain as it moves through the intestines.
The severity and impact of irritable bowel on the individual’s life can range anywhere from a minor inconvenience to being completely debilitated. Statistics tell us it occurs more often in women than men, and usually presents before the age of 35, but I’m not sure I agree with this. I’ve known quite a few men with the condition and I think men are less likely to get diagnosed because they are embarrassed, so they hide it. Although this condition can be quite painful and even disabling, it is considered less serious than other intestinal health conditions like Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis and is not believed to increase the risks for colorectal cancer. However, people living with severe IBS may disagree, because with the extent of pain that is experienced it is hard to believe there isn’t damage occurring. Other symptoms of IBS may include mucous in the stools, a feeling like you still need to have a bowel movement even though you’ve already had one, heartburn and feeling an urgency to go to the bathroom. It is often accompanied by a variety of other health conditions such as Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. Symptoms vary from person to person and are usually unpredictable and disruptive.
Some people have what is called constipation predominant, while others have diarrhea predominant, and yet others may alternate back and forth between the two. Symptoms often appear suddenly without warning which may interfere in everyday life, causing the individual stress, embarrassment and emotional distress. For some people, their symptoms disappear for weeks or months at a time and then return and they experience no increase in severity, while other people report no reprieve and a consistent worsening of their condition over time. Some people experience spasms in the bowel as the muscles may contract suddenly and then return to normal just as fast. While others even have bowels that stop functioning completely for a period of time. There are a variety of complications that can result with IBS, which although are not life threatening can lead to additional troublesome health conditions. The strain of constipation may result in hemorrhoids or anal fissures, which are tears in the canal of the anus, and when the stool sits in the colon too long then toxins are reabsorbed by the body. With diarrhea, the body loses too much fluid and essential nutrients, which can lead to dehydration and the anus may become irritated from frequent evacuation. Additionally, changes in diet to avoid foods that trigger symptoms can also lead to nutritional deficiencies as the body doesn’t receive all the nutrients it needs to function adequately.
Additionally, the symptoms of IBS are similar to or even overlap with many other bowel problems like Crohn’s, inflammatory bowel disease or celiac disease, so it’s important to rule out other possibilities. IBS Causes Conventional medicine likes to slap a label on all health conditions and instead of looking for the root of the problem, they write a prescription for drugs that do nothing but merely cover up the symptoms, or even worse they will blame it on a psychological issue. IBS is usually multifaceted and the cause is often the result of several issues intertwined. It is believed that there may be an interaction that involves the brain, the gastrointestinal system and the nervous system that results in malfunctioning of the bowel. The main contributing factors in IBS are poor diet, Candida overgrowth, bacterial overgrowth, parasites, food allergies or sensitivities, gluten intolerance, chemical sensitivities, an imbalance or deficiency of neurotransmitters, hormones and chronic stress. By addressing these issues many people are able to find some relief in their symptoms, and in some cases, eliminate them completely. Neurotransmitters Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that allow nerve cells to communicate with one another and reside in the brain and the gut. Although there are a variety of prescription drugs on the market that a traditional physician may use to treat neurotransmitters, in the long run they only create more problems.
Drugs only damage and create more of a deficiency in neurotransmitters. Balancing the neurotransmitters should be accomplished by making changes in the diet and lifestyle and supplementing the diet with amino acids and a variety of vitamins and minerals. Gluten Intolerance With gluten intolerance, which is also called celiac disease, the individual has an autoimmune disorder that sees gluten, which is a substance found in wheat, rye and barley, as a harmful substance and prevents the body from being able to digest it. It causes damage to the small intestine and may result in symptoms like abdominal pain and diarrhea. Many people are unaware they have gluten intolerance and get misdiagnosed as IBS. However, gluten and grains in general, are inflammatory by nature. Our bodies are not genetically designed to consume them, so even if you don’t have gluten intolerance, they can cause inflammation throughout the gastrointestinal tract. Grains and Legumes Grains, including whole grains, and legumes contain a wide variety of anti-nutrients like lectins, phytates, saponins, and protease inhibitors that are destructive to the gastrointestinal tract and cause abdominal pain, cramping, gas, diarrhea, anxiety, etc.
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