I have had "IBS" for years and I thought it was just something I had to live with.

Regular D, severe bloating, sluggishness and a general feeling of being unwell.

It was driving me mad.

I was tested for coeliac disease, not that, chrons disease, not that, gallstones, not that.

So I tried the elimination diet and started with cutting out dairy, not that.

So then I tried cutting out gluten/wheat and only eating potatoes and rice as my forms of carbs.

2 weeks later, I feel like a new woman.

That's all it took.

So I would urge everyone who has yet to try an elimination diet to give it a go - if it isn't gluten or dairy, it could be other things, egg for example.

Don't just try to figure out particular trigger foods because it's likely that whole groups of foods are what is making you suffer!

Also, after visiting many GP's, they don't have a clue what they are talking about, here is my prime example:

Went to the doctor to complain, again, about my D.

The doctor replied with, you should eat more fibre. My reply, soluble or insoluble (as they are absorbed by the body differently)?

The doctor replied, wheetabix.

Why thank you Mr Doctor for your detailed reply, yes I'm sure wheetabix is the cure for all my problems! Silly man!

Anyway, the moral of the story is to never rely on a GP opinions as they are not specialised in Gastro problems, use a trip to the doctors as an interview in order to be referred to someone who can actually help you.

After my trip, I was referred to the hospital to see a Gastro doctor - which is all I needed.

I even met another lady the other day who is sensitive to gluten just like me, all her symptoms were the same etc etc and now she is fine!

Don't just sit there suffering, try everything you can to try and solve it - your bowels are clearly not happy, help them out!!

Also, I feel that IBS is only a label given to sufferers when the cause of the problems is unknown.

IBS is "syndrome" which cause or cure is unknown.

Just a name then? Just a name given to a group of symptoms which cause has yet to be identified?

There is no reason why your bowels should behave this way if you have been examined and told you are healthy in that region (colonoscopy can tell you this) - so if you are healthy - it is something you are eating which is upsetting you down there.

I guarantee if you didn't eat for 72 hours, your symptoms would dissapear.

I understand stress is a factor - and I have been blessed to have very reactive bowls when it comes to stress. But that is different entirely to having to deal with bad bowels every day when your life is not particularly stressful.

So please look at your diet, play around with it, cut things out and see what happens, I wish I had done it earlier!!

I do hope this has helped someone out there, because I feel that some people get labelled with having IBS and hear that there is no cure and just suffer because they feel they need to, when you don't!!

11 Replies

  • I agree with every thing you said .I am Fructose &Lactose intolerant my Dr told me ITs Just IBS and you will have find out yourself,what triggers it .He gave me Meberverine tablets which gave me acid and then gave me Omeprazole for the acid. This made me really feel ill ,so saw another Dr r who said it was the tablets that were making the IBS worse,So the only Tablets I take for IBS is Buscapan for the pain.I cannot eat anything with Fructose or Lactose in. Thirty years ago I had all the usual tests for chronic D at the hospital and was told IBS ,so I stopped eating Tomatoes onions, chocolate. I was also told the scan showed I had 1gallstone. So for thirty years I have had a healthy diet I love salad ,fresh fruit, and fruit juice eat yogurts instead of cake ,don't drink or smoke. Two years ago after a few niggling pains, I was told to have my gallbladder out while I was fit and healthy I was then 67. I was ok for the first month then eating salad or fruit made me double up in pain. And rush to the I read the label on everything ,fructose is in everything anything that ends in ole, like sorbitol is in toothpaste, mannitol is in omeprazole. I live on Potatoes, White slimming bread , Meat, Fish .I have Lactose free Milk, Cheese, and there spread. We have given up going Abroad for holidays as I lost half a stone in two weeks ,i was only eating what I knew I was ok with and I was still in pain and rushing to the loo and then I realised it was the OLive oil they used to cook my chicken in .But IBS rules my life .I have to see how my stomach is every day before I can make plans whether I can go out or not. I do think Drs use the word IBS as it covers a lot symptoms especially in the uk

  • Thank you for that, yes I find GP's rather vague. I have had IBS a while I think. I have cut out brown bread, hate white mind you. I don't eat much bread anyway, so not a problem. Also cut out any veg apart from root veg and Fruit with seeds and no skin. I had a good week then upset, same thing this week! I think it is spicy foods. So will cut that out also for a while and see what happens. It is so good to feel normal again though!

  • Am so glad ur feeling much better, I have been in pain 24/7 following a Colonoscopy in OCT 2013, no explanation.

    No D, terrible pain and feeling like I have got worms wriggling around all the time.

    I have done a couple of exclusion diets no improvement but am thinking what else can it be if there is nothing wrong with me gynae checked 3 times all clear!

    I have my 10th Wedding Anniversary coming up in AUG and would really like to feel better. Keep well 😄

  • In really happy for u noodlesaaah!!!! I've found out recently after 15years of bad ibs D that I've cut cheese out totally,every kind of cheese and touch wood , my bowels r so much better and I'm actually having fully formed stools !! Sorry for the Tmi lol but I'm happy !! In not saying I'm cured 100%, and I'll still probs think about toilets when I go somewhere new ...... But it's a definite improvement ......but as u say docs rnt particularly bothered so we've got to look after ourselves and try and eliminate things ....... It's all trial and error xx I wish u well in the future x

  • What a wonderful posting.

    I totally agree with you that foods are influencing all of this.

    The most important factor.

    Yeast can be a major problem too.

    I try to eat more sensibly now difficult to eliminate completely, but diet is so very very important.

    All the best Sandra

  • Thank you everyone for your replies! Xxxxx

  • Wow, what a brilliant post and so very well said and I'm sure most people signed up to this website because they have gut problems will totally agree. I am more prone to IBS C so, like you, went to the doctors when I didn't know what was wrong with me. I was referred to the hospital and had a colonoscopy and endoscopy and there was nothing wrong there so I was told I had IBS.

    All my symptoms started from a bout of food poisoning back in 1996 and I was also worse then than I am now but have to say I have been totally lazy in the diet side of things. I went to my doctor to be referred to a dietician; I was referred, had an appointment, I was then told I would hear back in six months.

    I phoned about 7 months later only to be told that the hospital no longer had the funding so I was back to square 1. I totally agree with you that doctors haven't got a clue what it is so they just label it IBS!

    Keeping fairly fit does tend to help me as does Multibionta multivitamins with probiotics in them. I have a problem if I over exert myself i.e. I did a powerwalk marathon last week (I will probably do again as this was my 6th marathon and I feel a real sense of achievement as well as it's raising lots of money for cancer) and when I finished my IBS was awful as it had the opposite affect in that I needed to find a toilet quick. I then suffered awful stomach cramps, felt sick and had a 3 1/2 hour train journey ahead of me. Luckily enough the Sainsburys at Paddington was open so I bought Immodium and took 2 straight away and then took another one later and my train journey was fine. Boots opened at 09:00 so I was able to purchase travel sick tablets - sorted. I was out of sorts for a couple of days though.

    I will 'pull my finger out' and follow your excellent lead and start eliminating things from my diet and see what happens. I know I can't eat broccoli or cauliflower very often as I have eliminated that from my diet already and reintroduced and noticed the affect it had on me.

    Once again, an excellent post and so glad you are now okay - well done.


  • Thank you for your reply!

    My main aim for the post was to make people aware that IBS is not a disorder.

    I feel that a lot of people are given the label "IBS" and think that's the end of it.

    For example, if you go to the doctors about a sore throat, and they diagnose you with tonsillitis. You have tonsillitis, it actually exists. We know what causes it, and we know how to cure it.

    Whereas, IBS has no cause, and no cure. Why's that?

    Because it is simply a name given to a group of symptoms which have no apparent cause.

    A good way to prove what I am saying is to simply drink water for 2 days (it's not nice) but if your symptoms improve or dissapear it proves that it is something you are eating. The hard part is finding exactly what you are eating which is causing the problems.

    For me, it was gluten.

    My mum, who suffers from IBS C like you, she also has divaticulitus which means this may not work for you, but she eats no carbs (or very very little).

    Since she has done this, she has no problems whatsoever. And in all honesty, carbs are the most unhealthy foods anyway!

    Carbs such as pasta, bread, cakes etc etc, are mainly flour and sugar.

    wooopdedoo. Nothing healthy about either of those!

    Exchange that for some chicken with some mixed veg, and you are giving your body a lovely amount of vitamins, protein and something worthwhile!

    You may even be able to "excrete" nicely the following day!

    I personally think IBS should be named, sensitive bowels.

    Instead of calling it a syndrome which suggests there is something wrong with our bowels when, like you, there isn't!

    Even after I have changed my diet, I can almost guarantee I would be visiting the toilet more than a few times if i was facing a situation which made me nervous/anxious. Because I have sensitive bowels!

    All I can say is, please please EVERYONE try changing your diet, cut out dairy, gluten, egg, gassy vegetables (obviously not all at the same time because that would be awful) it may be you next wanting to shout from the rooftops "I HAD A NORMAL POO TODAY"

  • Excellent reply and thank you Noodlesaaah. I agree with you in that carbs are not actually healthy, particularly the white variety. I was making my own bread, which I haven't done for a while now and have to say at least I knew what was in it as when I checked the shop bought bread it had loads of synthetic ingredients in it.

    Agree though, the best way for me is to start to cut out things like bread and pasta (luckily enough pasta rarely passes my lips and I don't eat bread through the week at all so it would just be stopping it at weekends and thinking of other foods for lunch - I don't find the evening meal hard to plan at all without carbs.

    I think the hardest thing for me will be dairy as I love yoghurts and have milk in drinks but know I could substitute for soya, coconut milk etc. I have already cut out the gassy vegetables and rarely eat onions, which I do love - boo hoo.

    Anyway, thanks once again for your excellent post and here goes.


  • I felt exactly the same, don't think I could live without cheese!!

    Luckily, that's not what I have a problem with.

    I have heard though, that as we get older, our body gets worse and worse at producing lactase which digests lactose (think I've said that right) Anyway, apparently as a race and generation (white British) one of our genes so to speak, has mutated so we are able to digest lactose!

    Obviously there is a minority which are not able to digest it - but it's more likely not to be dairy woohoo!

    But in other cultures, where milk isn't such a big part of their diet, do not have this mutation.

    Do you find that after binging on carbs at the weekends, your C gets worse? As that would be a clear indication and be the best thing to cut out first?

    Last thing, I do find it funny how IBS is such a common thing nowadays, has it always been this common? Or did people just not used to talk about those sorts of things back in the day? Or is it because of all the chemicals and junk food that a lot of us eat now? Or is it because we lead more stressful lives?

  • I compelled to reply to your final paragraph Noodlesaah. I am pretty sure it's all of the chemicals that are put into our food, when I was a child there was no such thing as organic as all food was 'pure'. I remember a Blue Peter programme from when I was a teenager and it was about strawberries and making them last longer. The choice being, do you want you strawberries to last longer and not go mouldy or would you rather then went off in a couple of days - I'd rather have 'pure' strawberries thanks with no chemicals - I rest my case!

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