Probiotics and IBS

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a common condition that primarily affects the digestive system. It can cause extreme cramps and abdominal pain, digestive discomfort, and sometimes intense pain when going, or trying to go, to the toilet.

IBS is a condition that is more prevalent in women and, unfortunately, there is no known cure. However, you can keep the symptoms under manageable control with conservative management.

There have been many avenues of exploration around the care and treatment of IBS, which is prevalent in an estimated 7 to 21% of the world population.

Guidance from The British Society of Gastroenterology (BSG) has been recently updated and states that using probiotics, which are a collection of live bacteria and yeasts that are classed as ‘good bacteria’, can be extremely helpful in easing the symptoms of IBS when used in a pathological scope.

While conservative management includes some medications to alleviate IBS symptoms, there is also a strong recommendation for diet and lifestyle changes to further assist in IBS flare-ups, such as increased activity, reducing FODMAPs and lactose and now, the introduction of probiotics.

Experts often say that the key to good health starts in the gut. More than 2,000 years ago Hippocrates stated that ‘all disease begins in the gut’ and although that is not literally true, many autoimmune, metabolic, and cognitive conditions result from gastrointestinal imbalances. Lots of research is being put into the introduction of probiotics as part of a daily routine to reduce IBS instances.

Probiotics and IBS

The introduction of probiotics is to not only replace some of the vital dietary elements we are missing from modern-day diets but also to investigate how the introduction of certain strains of ‘gut-friendly’ bacteria and yeasts can, in fact, change the gut microbe composition, which can promote a healthier environment for your gut and potentially reduce the instances and occurrences of IBS.

The kind of probiotic you require needs to be diverse in its use, so it is easy to store, take with you and use wherever you go, and free from as many gastric irritants as possible, such as lactose-free, no milk derivatives, and no Soy.

By avoiding the sources of potential food sensitivities, you can avoid gastric irritations and deliver the best probiotic cultures directly to your gut. Mr Michael Stellakis recommends to his IBS patients a complex poly-probiotic called VSL #3 which has a scientifically proven high volume of good bacteria. It has everything we are looking for in a probiotic to ease the signs and symptoms of IBS potentially.

For more advice on managing IBS, call 01926 492969 to arrange a consultation with Mr Michael Stellakis.