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IBS and Ayurveda treatments

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterised by recurrent abdominal discomfort in association withalternate episodes of diarrhea and constipation. Physiological, Luminal, Behavioural and psychosocial factors are responsible for IBS. They are caused by two entirely different mechanisms. Bowels habit is disturbed by diarrhea or constipation occurring alone or alternating. Some

forms of this IBS have in the past been called spastic colon and idiopathic or nervous diarrhea.Constipation occurs from a sluggish contraction of the bowel and diarrhea by an overactive bowel.According to ayurveda this disease is due to vitiation of Dosha. It is clear that Agni mandhya ( low digestive fire ) * and Manas (Mind)* are involved in this disease.IBS is a clinical diagnosis and

presents as one of the three predominant subtypes: (1) IBS with constipation (IBS-C); (2) IBS with diarrhea (IBS-D); and (3) mixed IBS (IBS-M).

What are the symptoms of IBS?

• Diarrhea characteristically occurs in the morning, and almost never at night.

• Urge to defecate after meals.

• Pain in the lower abdomen, pain often occurs in attacks usually relived by defecation and sometimes provoked by food.

• Bowel habit is variable. All most all patients notice ribbon like stools with or without mucus.

• Sensation of incomplete emptying of the rectum.

• Abdominal distension, excessive flatus, dyspepsia, heartburn, increased urine frequency

Causes of IBS

Although the etiology of the irritable bowel syndrome is uncertain, some relate this to psychological

disturbances, especially anxiety. Some relate their onset to an attack of infective diarrhoea or certain foods may precipitate symptoms.

Dietary factors are also important. Some patients have chemical food intolerances (not allergy) to poorly absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates (lactose, fructose and sorbitol, among others), collectively known as FODMAPs (fermentable oligo-, di- and monosaccharides, and polyols).

Their fermentation in the colon leads to bloating, pain, wind and altered bowel habit. Noncoeliac gluten sensitivity (negative coeliac serology and normal duodenal biopsies) seems to be present in some IBS patients, while others may be intolerant of chemicals such as salicylates or benzoates, found in certain foods.


It is true that stress can affect bowel function. It has been demonstrated that the bowel can flush or become very pale in response to emotional reactions. Severe acute stress may cause diarrhea.


A close look at dietary factors is a must in evaluating the cause for an irritable bowel, one cause i.e. lactose intolerance is a very common problem. The inability to digest lactose sugar in milk and dairy

products. The undigested lactose acts like a laxative and causes the symptoms of an irritable bowel.


Another and less common is gluten intolerance. Some individuals may have an allergic reaction to gluten protein, which is found in all cereals except rice and corn. This can cause diarrhea.


Another and less common is gluten intolerance. Some individuals may have an allergic reaction to gluten protein, which is found in all cereals except rice and corn. This can cause diarrhea.


Fat may also be a cause of diarrhea, they stimulate strong contractions of colon contributing to pain and diarrhea.


Alcohol is another often-unrecognised cause for such symptoms, particularly diarrhea. The patient may not think that his or her alcohol habit can be the cause. Alcohol is a cellular poison. Its initial contact with the lining of the bowel may cause some cellular damage. As the alcohol in the blood is recirculated regularly and bathes the intestinal cells, it creates further damage. Damaged cells mean inadequate digestion, followed by diarrhea and IBS.


Coffee, tea, colas and chocolate are all can cause IBS, as they stimulate muscular contractions and acts as a causative factor in diarrhea.


Spices may also irritate the bowel. In some case it may be due to food allergies or food poisoning.


Diarrhea may also be a symptom of vitamin deficiency e.g. niacin, B-12 or folic acid.

Dont eat these for IBS

Don’ts - Eat wheat, maize, barley, pigeon pea, pea, cow pea, spiked dolichos, black gram, gram, Soya bean, saga, kidney bean, potato, sweet potato, navalkoal, onion, coconut, groundnut, chili, oily food, chicken, red meat, crabs, prawns, fish, leafy vegetable like sorrel, drum stick etc, mango,pineapple, apple, watermelon, cashew, pumpkin gourd, papaya, fig, jack fruit, excess milk, day sleep, awakening at night, tension, suppression of urges before bed.

Do’s eat these for IBS

Eat old rice, jawar, gourd, coriander leaves, lentil, green grams soup, black pepper, dried ginger, wood apple, Pomegranate, nutmeg, skimmed milk, buttermilk, hot water, complete rest, adequate sleep.

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