Diet Change

I have suffered from IBS-D for about a year and a half and in some sort of pain/discomfort all the time (the pain varies from mild to severe) even though I am also having medication but still trying to find the right dosage. I am considering maybe having a trial where I take bread away from my diet to see if that makes a difference seeing as the pain/discomfort is constant. I think I have had a wheat allergy test and it came back negative, although I am just going to double check I have had that test the next time I see my GP. would cutting down on bread make a difference if you don't have an allergy to it? has anyone else tried this and seen improvements?

13 Replies

  • Hi there. I have had IBS-D for 15 years now and there are sometimes certain foodstuffs that trigger a particularly painful bout. When this happens I do limit the gluten in my diet. I'm not allergic or intolerant but if I remove it from my diet it does tend to stop pain and bloating.

    Yesterday for example as we were out and about and had to eat what we were given, I had white bread toast for breakfast, pizza and garlic bread for lunch. At 2am this morning I certainly knew about it! On and off the loo all night - which you can probably empathise with.

    I often find too that if I remove bread from my diet I can lose a few pounds in weight. Not that I want too as I'm small and if I lose 1/2stone people really notice it and I get paranoid about being too skinny!

    Give it a try or at least cut down your gluten intake and see how you feel.

    I've also found the Fodmap diet doesn't work particularly for me.

    Wishing you well

  • Thank you. I think I will give it a try for a few weeks to see if there is any difference. I can definitely emphasise with you, I can be up in the night for hours sometimes, it's really not nice. I do eat a lot of bread, probably more than I should so it will be interesting to see if there is any different. Weight is a problem for me too, I am only 5ft 4 and nearly 19 years old. When my ibs first started I was in excruciating pain (so I couldn't eat) and on the toilet all the time which caused me to loose a stone and a half which isn't good if you only have a small frame. Luckily I have been fortunate enough to put most of the weight back on so I'm in the same boat as you really, weight loss really isn't an option.

  • I'm only 5'2' and 8 and 1/2 stone. I've always been petite. I worry and get anxious sometimes as I know I have to eat to keep my weight up. This then causes me to stress and then I don't feel hungry...vicious circle! I also worry about travelling as when I need the loo, I NEED the loo and I worry about not being near one.

    What are we like!

  • I think that is a worry for the vast majority of people who suffer with IBS-D and when you've got to go, you've really got to go! There was a time when I wasn't even thinking about where is the neatest toilet, then I developed ibs then that changed completely. People worry about not being near a loo or not getting there in time and I'm certainly one of them who worries about that.

  • I know! When I think back pre-IBS I never even used to think about finding a loo. I used to go on walks for hours and travel up and down the country. Now it is a major operation before I leave the house to plan my route.

  • You wouldn't have thought it would affect your life but it really does. I try not to think of what my life was like before because I just find myself getting upset. I'm still trying to get used to it myself, especially when it comes to outings. My ibs is pretty severe as I have functional dyspepsia as well but I just remind myself there are people out there in far worse situations even though this really isn't a nice one to be on. We just have to try make the best of things and try to carry on even though it is sometimes really difficult. It's a lot easier said than done though as I'm sure you understand.

  • Have you tried cutting out dairy or lactose? It can cause diarrhea, wind, pain and bloating. You may have other food intolerance too. A very good website is for information and support.

  • I don't eat much dairy foods to be honest, the odd bit now and then but rarely.

  • I would definitely try cutting out wheat & dairy, I know it's not easy but it has made a huge difference to me. Now if I do get stomach ache & diarrhoea, I can usually trace it back to something I've eaten the day before. I still crave bread & milk etc but the consequences are just not worth it. I also take codeine & immodium on a regular basis just to be able to get out & about on bad days.

  • I am starting to think bread may be a trigger food but I need a few more weeks without it to know for sure I think. Is there a food you eat to replace bread? seeing as we tend to need it in our diets

  • There's no enjoyable substitute for proper bread so over the years I've eaten less & less but I do buy the Genius-wheat-free, white sliced bread for sandwiches & toast & sometimes bake my own using wheat free flour. Rice cakes are ok too. I can't tolerate rye either so it's trial & error really. It is daunting at first but you can usually find substitutes, hope you find a solution.

  • I find that bread is not a problem for me at all. In fact things that you would call 'junk' food don't seem to set off a bout for me. I love my food really hot but I find that if I rush my food, and its a bit too hot, all foods upset me. Also for me its mixtures - so for example lasagna upsets me, but not cheese/cheese sauce on top of any other pasta dish. I can eat bacon on a butty, I can eat egg on toast, but give me bacon and eggs together and it upsets me... and so on.

    I've also found that travel is a major obstacle for me too. The thinking about 'what may happen' just makes any situation worse so I try my best to mentally prepare for things to avoid any panic.

    I will tell you a funny story from this weekend. I was on scout camp overnight. I'd taken immodium. Whilst it works it means I get very windy.... Whilst waiting for my turn to address the 40 people there I needed to be rid of this wind... the only thing for it was to walk past them (clenched) and towards the loo block.... I decided I'd better run... each time my foot hit the ground a huge amount of wind was expelled...I sounded just like a comedy balloon, I'm just hoping they thought my boots were squeaking!!

    One practical thing to get hold of is a credit card sized 'I just can't wait' notice that you can show folk in front of you in the queue for the loo. This way you get to push in without panic. I always go to the disabled loo if possible. Its rare that it's in use despite queues - they are meant for people like us who have a life long battle with our bowel as well as those who can't use other loos. Our illness is very disabling, so don't waste time on guilt while using the disabled loo's. In a real emergency I use the gents. Recently I had to use the loo marked Gents in a museum. There were just two ordinary loo's, one said ladies one said gents, so I didn't mind using it in the least.

  • I must say you are extremely brave for going camping, with the pain and diarohea I get I think i would be to scared/worried/anxious to do that kind of thing. As it happens I actually have one of the 'I can't wait' cards so I suppose that is a comfort knowing it is there with you just in case

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