View Full Version : Worth Reading for IBS'ers

11-25-2000, 01:04 PM
I am trying to create an Infomation Archive so a person can just click on for information that is available for people with IBS:


This is a good article from Johns Hopkins magazine. Feel free to add to this thread. Just make sure the addition doesn't contain advertising and follow the Posting Policy.


[This message has been edited by Harry (edited 08-14-2001).]

02-21-2002, 11:39 AM
Yogurt with L. Acidophilus helps re-establish or keeps in balance your good intestinal bacteria(Flora).

Water soluble fiber absorbs water--makes your colon expand and function properly. Your Gastro Intestinal tract NEEDS FIBER to operate!!! A normal person really needs a combination of both soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber works to control constipation just as well as diarrhea. Insoluble fiber has a tendency to give me diarrhea--- things such as nuts, wheat bran, cauliflower. Psyllium seed husk that is the active ingredient in Metamucil, Konsyl, Equate(Wal Mart brand) and others--- is water soluble. Just make sure you drink enough water when taking it. It is a natural fiber so it does breakdown by intestinal bacteria, ferments and causes some gas when you first start using it. But --that soon goes away with continued use for most people.

All meat, seafood and dairy products contain NO Fiber.

Insoluble fiber makes your intestines contact to move digested food along and out. All fruit and veggies are insoluble. Also, nuts, seeds, the outer parts of grains, beans and peas.
Soluble fiber that absorbs fluids and bulks up your stool is all the root veggies--- like potatoes , sweet potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, and Inulin that is chicory root. Also the inner part of all grains, beans and peas. The water solublble fiber supplements like psyllium, Citrucel, Benifiber, Fiber Choice.

Fibercon is considered an insoluble fiber.

[This message has been edited by Harry (edited 04-30-2002).]

07-12-2002, 05:12 AM
Here's one more official website for the list: www.aboutibs.org (http://www.aboutibs.org)

Cheers, Raju.

01-06-2003, 02:47 AM
If you are on antibiotics for your stomach, remember to take some Acidophilus caps with them too, though at different times and on an empty stomach. The antiboitics will kill off alot of your good intestinal bacteria and could make your stomach worse. At least the Acidophilus will afford you some protection.

Celiac Sprue is a problem with breaking down and absorbing gluten that is present in wheat, barley, oats and rye. This is normally diagnosed via a blood test and an endoscopy to look into the small intestine. A biopsy is taken from here and that will be positve too. If you eat gluten, this will damage the villi of the small intestine, but once you cut out gluten, the damage resolves and it means that you will have to eat a gluten free diet for the rest of your life.

Celiac disease can cause symptoms such as diarrhea, stomach cramps, weight loss and just a general feeling of lethargy and of being unwell.

01-18-2003, 11:21 AM
Lactbacillus Acidophilus is a live active culture that has to get to your intestines to colonizes and work. It is destroyed by stomach acids so should be taken on an empty stomach so that more can survive the getting through the stomach. THat would be the time you have less stomach acids.

It should also be stored in the refrigerator because heat will also kill it.

01-19-2003, 03:45 AM
I can't really see that increased fiber and acidophilus can give you back ache and cause you to swell, unless you are not drinking enough water and you are getting constipated.

Try cutting down on both a little and seeing if it improves. Also, increase your water intake.

01-19-2003, 07:55 AM

Whole wheat is also included --- it contains gluten that alot of people do not digest well.

I think you should not take peppermint unless it is enteric coated---it can irritate your stomach in a liquid form.
There is not any connection with feet swelling and taking fiber and acidophilus--- they just help your digestion and give you better BMs.

Too much salt can produce water retention. You know I have that problem if I eat too much pizza---It's just too salty for me!!!
Also, poor circulation can cause both swelling and some back pain ---are you getting enough exercise in this cold weather???

God Bless --- Harry

[This message has been edited by Harry (edited 09-11-2003).]

01-19-2003, 09:29 AM
thanks Harry

I was thinking that whole wheat was the whole grain.. but ok.. what do you do for bread? rye bread for toast don't sound too good.

The peppermint has peppermint 180 mg, rosemay 16 mg and thyme 16 mg.
The pills are enteric coated softgel.

I don't eat salt. The only salt I get is in prepared stuff like bread etc. I never cook with it either.


I drink alot of water now. I am drinking at least 8 - 10 glasses a day, I can't see how I could drink more.
I spend half my time in the bathroom between the pee'ing and bm's. I'm in the bathroom at least every 2 hrs, that includes sleeping time as well.

thanks guys for the suggestions.
any more ideas are great


02-13-2003, 07:25 PM
I found these things on the internet:

To grow and sustain healthy bones, people ages 9 and older should get 1,000 to 1,300 milligrams of calcium a day. Children less than 9 years old need varying amounts of calcium up to 800 milligrams a day.

{I found the information I was looking for, the updated calcium requirements:

It is recommended that adults 19 - 50 years get 1,000 mg/day calcium and 1,500 mg/day for those over 50.
Getting enough calcium and vitamin D are key to the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.
This from a registered dietitian in February 2003 Reader's Digest.}

A diet lacking in calcium can cause serious problems in later years without exhibiting any symptoms previously.

The best way to get calcium is through dairy products, leafy greens and canned salmon with the bones left in. One cup of plain yogurt has 450 milligrams of calcium, one cup of milk has 300 milligrams and one ounce of cheddar cheese has 205 milligrams of calcium.

Consumers should consult with their physicians before taking calcium supplements, McLaurin said. Individual calcium needs vary and some forms of calcium are more easily absorbed for some people.

Unlike many vitamins and minerals, people rarely have problems from too much calcium. However, calcium supplements taken in wrong doses can potentially interfere with other mineral absorption, result in calcium toxicity, aid the formation of kidney stones and lead to constipation and excess gas.

- I found this on a site by Mississippi State University Office of Agricultural Communications

Age (years) Calcium (mg per day)

1-3 500 mg

4-8 800 mg

9-18 1,300 mg

19-50 1,000 mg

51+ 1,200 mg {1,500 mg according to Reader's Digest Feb 2003}

Pregnant and Lactating Women 1,300 mg

Many cereals and breads have added calcium; check the labels. Another good choice is fruit juice fortified with calcium. An 8-ounce glass of calcium-fortified apple juice has 100 mg of calcium; fortified orange juice or grapefruit juice has between 300 and 350 mg. Soy milk, a protein-rich drink made from pressed cooked soybeans, doesn't provide a significant amount of calcium, but you can buy a calcium-fortified version. And while regular tofu is a respectable source, calcium-processed tofu is even better; check the label to see which type you're getting.

Include a calcium-rich food at every meal. If you're relying on diet alone to get enough of the mineral, be sure to eat at least one calcium-packed food at each meal. The body can absorb only about 500 mg of calcium at a time, so the most effective strategy is to take in calcium-rich foods throughout the day.

- Healthy Me - Blue Cross/Blue Shield Massachussetts http://www.ahealthyme.com/topic/calcium

Yogurt is an excellent source of calcium.
8 oz. of an average nonfat yogurt provides 300 mg of calcium
8 oz. of an average whole milk yogurt provides 288 mg of calcium

1 cup milk: 300mg

1 ounce cheese: 213 mg

2/3 cup spinach: 89 mg

2/3 cup peanuts and skins: 69 mg

3 1/2 ounces of broccoli: 130 mg

3 1/2 ounces of kale: 187 mg

3 1/2 ounces of almonds: 254 mg

3 1/2 ounces of canned sardines
with bones: 300 - 437 mg

3 1/2 ounces of cottage cheese: 94 mg

- from Stoneyfield Farm

I hope this is helpful.

[This message has been edited by Drea (edited 02-23-2003).]

02-13-2003, 10:11 PM

When this new board was first started -- I Posted this Topic with the intention of Making it "An Informational Archive" that relates to IBS suffers and their problems.

Calcuim is a subject that keeps coming up because of its natural calming as well as tranquilizing effects on the body as well as the Gastro system.
Thanks for posting your meaningful message. Now I know where to find it!!!
I know this topic will helped alot of people in the future.

The viewer counter has been reset to 0 several times from the hundreds.


[This message has been edited by moderator4 (edited 04-24-2003).]

02-14-2003, 05:29 PM
Harry, You are welcome, I am glad you like what I had found. I believe there is an update to the amount of calcium required by age, and if I find it, I will make that change. Calcium is so important too, because a lot of us are not eating enough milk products and bones tend to leech calcium at a certain age if it isn't supplemented. Thanks, Harry

02-15-2003, 08:30 AM
The subject keeps coming up what are the symptoms for IBS. As most of know the diagnoses is not used the same everywhere in the world so I thought I post The symptoms here!!!

Rome Diagnostic Criteria: IBS

An international group of health care professionals as well as professioals that were researching gastrointestinal disorders including IBS met in Rome, Italy to come up with the diagnostic criteria for all GI conditions. They came up with symptoms for all Gastro disorders and classified each problem. The literature says they did it by researching published reports, studies and the agreement by the group.
All of their work was published in a book: "The Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders" edited by Dr.Douglas A Drossman, MD and published by Little, Brown and Co.(Boston) in 1994. It is known as the Rome Criteria and has been updated since then by a Proffessional group and is called the Rome II Criteria.

It is well known and published around the World . All gartro functioal problems/ disorders are covered from swallowing, heartburn, nausea, belching, gas, rectal & anus pain, diarrhea, constipation and the list goes on including IBS.

This is the Rome Diagnostic Criteria for Irritable Bowel Syndrome(IBS):

At least 3 months of recurring or chronic symptoms:

1.Abdominal discomfort (that is mostly in the lower abdomen) AND IS:
a. Relieved by a Bowel Movement AND/OR

b. Associated with a change in
freguency of Bowel Movements

c. Associated with stool
consistency---harder or softer

2. Two or more of the following list at least 1/4 of the days or occassions:

a. Change in BM frequency---
"frequency" means more than 3 BMs a day or less than 3 BMs each week---

b. Passing white mucus with a BM-

c. Bloating or feeling of fullness or distention---

d. Altered BM consistency -watery, loose, hard or lumpy stools----

e. Change in Bowel Movements such as straining, incomplete emptying feeling after BM, having to rush to the bathroom---

A good diagnose can help alot of people deal with the problem-- just knowing that it's not cancer, or some other life threatening problem often brings reassureance and has a beneficial effect often positive effect.

There are many good books written about IBS but my favorite is: "Irritable Bowel Syndrome & the mind- body brain- gut Connection" by Dr.William B.Salt, MD. It outlines 8 steps for living with a funtional bowel disorder or colitis.

02-22-2003, 07:42 PM
Alot of people are often misdiagnose with IBS when they are Gluten intolerant. Gluten is contained in foods and products that contain wheat, oats, barley and rye. You can have a blood test for gluten intolerance.

A good information web site is: http://www.romecriteria.org/reading1.html

[This message has been edited by Harry (edited 02-22-2003).]

07-04-2003, 06:07 PM
Just a quick thanks to all those who share and especially to Harry, Sarah & Lil Red Chevy. I have learned so much in this forum, just wanted to let you guys know how much I and others appreciate your sharing of knowledge.

I see the same questions over & over again, a lot of these could be answered by reading this thread. Good luck to everyone. :)

12-30-2003, 08:56 PM
Quote Deleted

Hi Harry, Thanks for the info I have crohns disease for 30+ years and just recently began receiving SSDI,after trying for over year to get approved. anyhoo, I find that when having a "flare-up" that rice and plain broiled or baked chicken breast without skin , really helps, even it I have to eat it for a week or more. I wonder how many people on this board also have crohns.

Thanks again Harry :)

07-22-2004, 12:23 PM
I found that my IBS was actually fructose intolerance (this is an inability to digest frustose sugar... similar to lactose intolerance). After 10 years of "IBS" I am now completely free of symtoms.
This is a good site to start with (although some of the foods on the diet list are not accurate), but do a google search on "fructose intolerance IBS" and you'll find a lot more info.
Oh, PS - this is primarily for people with diarhea as their main symptom rather than constipation.

09-16-2004, 02:43 PM
I am looking for ways to Combat my Symptoms with IBS. (Have had for about 5 plus years)..I Leave a Location to go to another location which can be 3 miles and upwards, and I have to use (2 Amodium Advanced tablets plus 2 Rollaids. This feeling of pressure/gas in stomach and the feeling I will have an accident os with me. I encourage any HELP anyone can provide me. (Seems to be a Mind game too!!) If I am close to a bathroom I usually can handle the situation..HELP.........Lee

my husband dealt with his IBS of long standing (it worsened over the past year, to the point where he had to take an imodium b/f going to an interview and then still have an accident after, on the way home) by taking three packets of an insoluble fibre per day ... he'd been taking two for many years and suffering, and then just went up to three a couple of months ago and hola! it worked!!

hope this helps ..


10-04-2004, 08:37 PM
How do you know if you have IBS? I need to know from people in this board if i have it or not. I have diarrhea with almost anything i eat, especially when i eat out. Actually everytime i eat out i get diarrhea. My stomach is really sensitive to most things. Milk also gives me the burning runs. Your help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

10-15-2004, 09:47 PM
Bacteria may cause IBS -- an interesting article and research!!


10-24-2004, 07:02 PM
I read a great book, What your doctor may not tell you about IBS by Richard N Ash, MD and then went to visit a nautropath dr. She took an hour and a half to question me, my symptoms, my diet and prescribe a path to a healthier life. I had already cut dairy out of me diet as that was an obvious trigger for me. Now I have cut out gluten, caffiene and alcohol for a two week period detox. I am already feeling the difference. A blood test is available to determine food allergies, but was to costly for me at this time. The other recommendations the doctor gave to me were to: drink herbal teas (fresh, green leaf) at least 3 times a day, peppermint or camomile, at least 8 glasses of water a day, acidolphlus - one tsp a day, and to massage my stomach with a peppermint oil mixed into nivea (or a similar based lotion) for 5 mintues a day, in a clockwise circular motion. Now, you symptoms might be triggered by something else, but you can take steps to change this. I have a friend who refused to change her diet and give up her favorite foods for two weeks. If we take control, we can get better. Research and take action.

10-27-2004, 03:48 AM
I hear a lot about soluble fiber helping IBS. If I use something like Citrucel, should I be taking more than the recommended dosage?

10-27-2004, 06:38 AM
The fiber that works for diarrhea as well as constipation is psyllium seed husk that is in Metamucil. I don't know if Citrucel works as a bulking agent for diarrhea-- I have never used it.

But, the recommened dose is usually all you need.
A person needs 25 to 35 grams of fiber daily for their intestines to function properly and it should be balanced between soluble and insoluble fiber!!

11-09-2004, 05:36 PM
I am having intestinal pains off and on as we speak. What do you take for that? When the pains come on, oh boy...LOOK out! It feels like labor pains! Can this be caused by over eating? I thought it was due to eating good and then eating a hambugar and greasy fries because it came on shortly after that. Is Mylanta good for it or Nexium?

11-10-2004, 01:59 AM
Believe it or not I am having very good luck using Digestive Advantage for IBS plus Citrucel. The best part is the product is an OTC drug. It's wonderful and it I have not had any problems since I started this combination. :bouncing:

02-13-2005, 09:59 AM
I hear about all these people taking Fiber pills and stuff but cant i just eat more fruits and vegetables and that be just as good?

02-13-2005, 10:49 AM
I hear about all these people taking Fiber pills and stuff but cant i just eat more fruits and vegetables and that be just as good?
b/c some ppl need more fruits/veggies/whole wheat than they can poss. eat -- esp. insoluble fibre... you're on the right track tho -- ppl should eat more fruits/veggies/whole wheat ...


02-13-2005, 01:06 PM
A person needs 25 to 35 grams of fiber daily for their intestines to function properly and it needs to be divided between soluble and insoluble fiber.

Soluble fiber bulks up your stool with fluid and sorta cleans out your colon. and insoluble causes you to have stools but thinner. Fiber is in all grains, fruit and veggies.
There is no fiber in all meat, seafood or dairy products. Also these days with all the process foods available most fiber is just not there--

It is a good idea to make sure you get enough water soluble fiber daily like psyllium -- it makes you regular w/o straining.


03-23-2005, 08:51 PM
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05-25-2005, 05:50 AM
Hi Harry, I joined HealthBoards to find support for my husband's lung cancer and now find myself looking at other issues. IBS affects me directly. I was first diagnosed with it back in 1986 when I was 27- IBS was practically unheard of. The last 18 yrs of dealing with it and learning what works and what doesn't. I don't know if this will help people, but this has been my experince.
Gas-producing foods: (ie: broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and cabbage).
Fruit preservatives. I found out that in trying to eat right at buffets, I ate canteloupe, watermelon, pineapple and they regularly doused the fruit with preservatives to keep them fresh for hours.
MSG - I am a huge fan of oriental cuisine, but found out to my dismay that MSG or other flavor enhancers are used widely. That explained why typically I had uncontrollable diarhhea and colon cramps about 1 hour after eating at my favorite Chinese buffet.
Alcohol-I didn't believe this but it took me several years to figure it out. I was not a beer drinker, but loved wine. I have since stopped drinking all together. Made a BIG difference.
Greasy foods. I thought spicy foods would affect me, but I can eat really hot foods and be OK, but eat a piece of fried chicken and be in big trouble.
Drastic changes in temperature (especially in the summer going from outdoor hot and humid to cold, air-conditioned interior).
Letting yourself get dehydrated. Drinking at least 6-8 glasses of water a day is a must. I tended to get so busy that I would forget to replenish my fluids during the day. The doctor told me that when the body starts running low on fluids, it starts taking it back from two main sources - colon, and sinuses. I have always had problems with both.
restrictive clothing. Extra-tight pants/jean, pantyhose, girdles, etc. Go for comfort and allow yourself just a little bit of breathing room, just in case you encounter one of those sudden bouts of unexpected IB.

I hope some of these tips prove helpful for someone else. In the meantime, good luck in your effort to provide resources to many.


06-04-2005, 05:33 AM
Hi, Harry, great information as usual. May I add that with the new yogurts, you can now get probiotic bifidus in yogurt? Activia & Yoplait are the two I have found that offer bifidus altho I have not been able to find Activia in low fat as yet, perhaps it is in bigger centers. I just want to say also, because of your help I can eat almost all dairy without symptoms. Thanks so much!!!! Restaurants and parties are no longer scary! :)

12-08-2005, 11:48 AM
I've read about a product called Life Start. It's made by Natren. I use some of their other products. It's a probiotic that is suppose to help those with IBS. I read about it in the Journal of Essential Vitality.

terri oneil
05-28-2006, 11:55 PM
Hi... I suffered with IBS most of my life and for the last three years also an incredible rash that I knew was due to some food???. I recently cut out all artificial sweetners, (the rash is totally gone) limit my sugar to two teaspoons a day, and also went semi-vegetarian (fish only now and lots and lots of veggies (minus broccoli,) and now eating lots of of whole grains and whole rice) and for over two months now I have not had even one single bout of IBS. My stomach is flat for the first time since I can remember and life is wonderful and I will never go back. This is how it was always meant to be!!

Hope this helps someone.

harry reeves
08-27-2006, 09:06 PM
If you have had enough tests to finanace Harvard medical school and all you get back is hummm try this try that and come back in six months Try this go get your para thyroid hormone bal checked. It ranks right be hind diabetes and causes all kind of stomach pai n constipation lethergy and personality changes and oh! majior bone loss. It can not be cured ecept by surgery. It will take a endochronolist forget primary care givers. If you do not have it you will still be paddling up the same ole creek but if you do ,YOUR CURED. PS I have suffered from everything I have read on this forum seen more spec DOCs than I can count. Finally decided the only cure was to get totaly wasted and clean a loaded gun maybe two. But during all this incredibily priced medical testing they, who ever they are discovered I had a 30 percent bone loss.Ok 4 parshally blocked arterys two leaky heart vavles, arrithmyia, no gall bladder two head on collisions three bullet holes one in chest and one in groin one in arm and one still in spine, a fall off a two story building, a gasoline fire gallon of gas in face and ignighted. One sliced off ear from a fall over foot stool in my house. I can live with all this but not a 30 percent bone loss which I was told was exremely dangerous. And that is how I found out about hyperprarthyroidism, which since then I have Found Out most docs overlook it. So there you have it its now up to you, Good luck and good night.

07-31-2007, 10:07 AM
This is a great information and help board for all of us who have IBS. I suffered my whole life with this.
When I found out I was diabetic and changed my diet to no whites, my IBS got a lot better also. My Doc told me also to use Fiber tablets. He said it worked but had to drink lots of water with it. It does work and helps bind when you are consistant with it.
I do have flare ups every now and then and the only thing I have found is as someone mentioned to go to baked chicken, no skin and I eat some brown rice (not white for me) and after a few days my system comes back around to normal. And slowly I add other things and with any luck I am ok.
I have read a few new things to try which I am going to do and I thank you for your help and Harry thank you for starting this!:jester:

10-16-2007, 03:10 PM
Hi I have suffered with IBS for the last 15 years which has caused other problems for me i think it is great i found worth reading for I BS ers to know other people understand what we are going through is a God send :angel:

12-01-2008, 06:08 AM
I have had IBS for nearly 4 years, and I cannot work because of it. I have had the usual tests (barium enema, full blood tests, endoscopy, bowel biopsy, etc) but all have been negative, so IBS has been diagnosed. I alternate between constipation and diarrhoea regularly. I have tried diets (the elimination diet made me worse!) but find that what upsets me one day can be tolerated on another. I have tried changing my lifestyle but nothing seems to work. I am currently on amitriptylene 25mg, citalopram 60mg, and codeine 2X 30 mg, but it is all very hit and miss. My GP is great, but the hospital gastroenterologist is useless - so is the 'second opinion' at another hospital.
This site is great to know that I'm not alone:)

12-13-2008, 02:26 PM
Ive had IBS for 3 and a bit years now, and it has changed my life around something chronic!
Its so hard to know how to cope with it, and what to do to help, especially as no-one seems to know much about it, or have any quick fix solutions.
Ive been on a ridiculous amount of medication over the last few years, so much so, that the dr has said there is 1 more thing i havent tried, and then i have been given everything possible to try and help. Which leaves me feeling quite upset, as this last thing is an anti depressant, i am only 22 and the thought of having to be on those for possibly the rest of my life, scares me.
I do feel a bit selfish thinking like that, as if it may help then it could be worth it, but the thought of being depedent on anti depressants to help me, is a difficult decision to make. I have had endless blood tests, scans, and scares about it being an appendicitus, gaul stones, ovary problems etc etc, but nothing comes back as positive. it always comes back as "normal" but it doesnt feel like everything is normal!
I suffer really bad back pains too, which i just cannot seem to shift. I cant take anything to help, paracetamol/ibuprofen etc doesnt do anything for me, and it just seems like a never ending thing! I think people who dont have it, can find it hard to understand just how frustrating and upsetting it is to have to live with this condition, and i also know people who do have it get it in different strenghts too. I just wish there was something which would help the pains in my stomach and back, and to stop the constipation i am constantly having. Its so hard to live with. Just thankful iv found this forum!

12-28-2008, 07:25 AM
I feel your pain, I have been chronically constipated since I was an infant. I got to the point where I was maybe going once or not at all in a two week period. I had a lot of back pain and sciatica.
There are so many things that can cause constipation. What is your diet like? Is it a lot of carbs/sugar? Are you exercising?
Systemic candida/yeast can also back you up, as can a mineral deficiency or drinking a lot of distilled water. There are some mineral products, like Mineral Rich by Optimum Health, which may really help you go

01-08-2009, 01:11 PM
Hi Baz...

I have had what I believe is IBS for about five years now. For the first time my new doctor wants to start all those lovely tests. IM just wondering if all the pain and $ is worth it. I have had a couple other doctors before, who pretty much tell me to just watch my diet. Though as you and many know, on some days that wont matter. Stress has been a key trigger for me.