It's approximated that between 10% and 15% of the United States population suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), a condition that causes painful cramps, bloating, gas, constipation, and diarrhea. If you fall into this category, then you already know just how unpleasant and unpredictable living with IBS and its symptoms can be. At the same time, you may not be comfortable taking prescribed medication to relieve your symptoms or haven't seen any success with these medications. Fortunately, there are some natural methods you may be able to use to prevent or relieve your IBS symptoms.
Figure Out Your Trigger Foods
Start by determining which foods trigger your symptoms in the first place. These can vary greatly from one person to the next, but some common triggers include:
- fatty foods
- carbonated beverages
- acidic foods
Consider keeping a food diary to help you narrow down your trigger foods, and then look for ways to avoid them in your diet. For example, if it turns out that dairy upsets your IBS, it might be time to switch to soy milk or other dairy-free alternatives.
Eat Meals at the Same Time Daily
Controlling IBS symptoms is all about promoting regularity, and a good way to work towards intestinal regularity is to eat your meals at the same time every day. This can be difficult to do if you have a constantly changing work schedule, but it's worth giving it a try. The results can be amazing. Focus on dedicating one week where you eat several small meals (as opposed to a few large meals) throughout the day, and make note of changes in your symptoms.
Incorporate Exercise Into Your Routine
You might not think exercise could help control your IBS, but it actually can--and a little bit goes a long way. A brisk walk around your neighborhood, even, may be enough exercise to stimulate contractions in your intestines, which can help to promote regularity and increase comfort. Just another reason to make an effort to incorporate exercise into your routine every day.
Drink More Tea
When your stomach is feeling upset, reach for a mug of pure peppermint tea. Aside from having numerous other health benefits, peppermint tea is also known relax the intestines and relieve gas. Plus, if you like minty flavors, it's pretty yummy. By keeping these home remedies in mind, you can take better control over your IBS symptoms and enjoy life.
For more help, contact a clinic like Naugatuck Valley Gastroenterology Consultants LLC.