Irritable bowel syndrome or spastic colon is a functional disorder characterized by abdominal pain, discomfort, bloating, and change in the bowel habits, with the main symptoms being diarrhea and constipation. Honestly, there is no specific cause for this condition to occur, but it could mainly be due to wrong eating habits leading to indigestion. This syndrome is not so severe, and can be cured or relieved by following a good diet that helps and promotes proper digestion.
The best way to get relief is by indulging in fiber-rich foods and a low-fat diet. If you have been constantly suffering from difficult and disturbed bowel movements, then a high fiber diet containing soluble fibers will definitely help you. Go through the list given below.
- Fruits: Apple, raspberries, prunes (stewed), banana, blueberries, fig, oranges, peaches, pears, pineapples, nectarine, and cherries.
- Vegetables: Asparagus, broccoli, brussels sprouts, onions, winter squash, sweet potato (skinned), green peas, potato (skinned), mixed vegetables, cauliflower, spinach, and turnip greens.
- Other Foods: Navy beans, kidney beans, black beans, packet of whole grain cereals, yogurt, cakes and cookies made from oatmeal, fruits, and buttermilk.
Gluten Free Diet
This is another good meal plan that can be followed. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. The main motto in following this diet is to avoid foods like bread, pasta, sauces, and other processed foods. Sausages, processed meat like slices of ham, ready meals, and potato chips or crisps are also some other foods that should be strictly avoided. Gluten is a sticky protein, which gets entrapped in the lining of the intestine, thus worsening the condition. If you are tempted to eat such foods, go for gluten-free breads, cakes, and pasta. These might not be similar to the normal ones in terms of taste, but are best options when you can't resist.
Foods to Avoid
- First of all, you need to cut down on dairy products like milk, cream, ice cream, since these are a bit hard to digest.
- Secondly, as a part of gluten-free diet, you need to cut the wheat intake in your diet, especially pancakes, cereals, dessert items, and bread products.
- Make sure you don't eat sugar and sugar substitutes, since they contain the saccharide fructose, which is hard to digest.
- And last of all, the lesser you eat oily and spicy stuff, the better it is for your health.
Apart from medication, these self-help tips are some additional measures to get relief.
- Read the food labels before purchasing breads, and go for whole wheat or whole grain ones.
- You could also use Beano, which is an over the counter anti gas pill.
- Eat smaller meals a day, since they help easy digestion, and reduce the urge of hunger.
- You could also add a fiber supplement to your diet, under a dietitian's consultation, if the foods listed above are not adequate.
- Drinking fluids, mainly water and fruit juices will help flush out all the body wastes and toxins easily.
- You could adjust or plan your diet according to your bowel habit timings.
- Eat slowly for proper digestion of food.
- The most important thing is to avoid alcohol and drinks like coffee, which causes irritation in the intestine.
So, if you happen to suffer from IBS, I hope the diet suggested above will help you get some relief.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.