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Which foods should I avoid with IBS?

I was diagnosed with IBS over 15 years ago and l am struggling to find my trigger foods as i seem to have become more sensitive since having my gall bladder out 2 years ago (have also piled on the weight) what foods should i cut out first and to what degree should l exclude certain foods? Kay


Our expert says...

Hi Kay

This really is an incredibly difficult one as it varies so much from person to person.

Different IBS sufferers will find different dietary approaches suit them, so a little trial and error is needed in finding a regimen that best eases individual symptoms. The beauty of keeping a food diary as you do when using this website is that you can also make a note of when you experience symptoms which means you have a documented record of food and symptoms helping you discover which foods are a problem for you. In the meantime, here are some tips which seem to help the majority of sufferers:

Eat Regularly. Those with IBS may find large meals overstimulate the gut and that eating little and often with a focus on starchy foods (e.g. potatoes, pasta and rice) is better.

Increase Dietary Fibre. Eating more fibre helps keep the colon mildly distended which reduces the risk of it going into spasm. A goal to aim for is at least three to five servings of fruit and vegetables daily, together with higher fibre versions of cereals, bread, rice and pasta.

Avoid Offending Foods. IBS sufferers don't seem to suffer from true food allergies more often than non-sufferers. But they may be more likely to experience intolerances to food such as spices, wheat and milk that result in intestinal discomfort. The best way to be sure about which foods upset you is to keep a detailed diet diary which can be discussed with a health professional. Caffeine sometimes causes flare-ups, so watch out how many coffees you drink.

Reduce Fat Intake. Some IBS sufferers find fat acts as a stimulus to bowel contractions so need to avoid very greasy meals that might send them rushing to the toilet.

You are advised to seek medical advice before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle with an aim of weight loss. This website and the content provided should not be used by persons under 18, by pregnant or nursing women, or individuals with any type of health condition, except under the direct supervision of a qualified medical professional. The information contained in these articles, and elsewhere on this website, is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only, and is not intended to replace, and does not constitute legal, professional, medical or healthcare advice or diagnosis and may not be used for such purposes. Continue...

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