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Irritable Bowel Syndrome: 6 lifestyle changes to manage the intestinal disorder

0 2 years ago

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a disorder of digestive system that causes disturbance in the bowel habits of affected people and may also cause issues like pain, cramping, heaviness or bloating in the stomach. Disturbance in bowel habits can mean any of these – change of frequency of stools, change in its form or need for excessive straining. It can range from diarrhea to difficult constipation. More common in women than men, IBS may be managed effectively by making certain lifestyle modifications and controlling triggers like stress. (Also read: Ayurveda tips for IBS: Keep gut issues at bay with these useful hacks)

What causes IBS

“Our digestive system similar to our brain, has its own nerves and signal transmitters across the nerves to send messages within its component, which is why it is also called the second brain. IBS is a disorder which arises when there is discordance between the axis of brain- the gut nerves and the gut proper. Exact cause for this disturbance is not known but triggers like stress, infections, medications, hormonal changes and type of food have been well documented,” says Dr Shankar Zanwar, Consultant Gastroenterologist, Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central.

Symptoms of IBS

Diarrhea, constipation, sense of incomplete stool evacuation which is a feeling like you still need to poop after you just did, gas, pain in abdomen, feeling of bloating in abdomen, cramping in abdomen are some of the symptoms of the disoder

How to cope with IBS

Dr Shankar Zanwar suggests lifestyle modifications that can help cope with IBS.

1. Stress busting: Stress if one the biggest cause for triggering IBS. Engaging yourself in activities which you relish meaning pursuing your hobbies is one of the easiest stress busters. It can take your disturbed mind away from the gut. As mentioned above IBS is the disease of disturbed gut-brain axis.

2. IBS diary: It is always a good idea to maintain diary which records what you eat, how you feel after any unusual or specific food items and the trend of your bowel symptoms which can include stool frequency and stool form. This will give both the patient and caregiver a clearer idea regarding the planning for better treatment and diet.


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