IBS pains that feel like period cramps 💔 - IBS Network

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IBS pains that feel like period cramps 💔


Omg I feel like I’m dying. My stomach is soooooo sore but like low where I would normally feel period cramps. I’ve also had a pain that runs over the front of my pelvis like a pulled muscle feels very tight and painful does anyone else get this? Should I be concerned?

I’m on the pill and take my last one tonight but I don’t normally get pains until 3 days after I took the last pill so I know it’s not my period.

K x

7 Replies

Yes i get this pain, this is how i explain my IBS... it is the same as period cramps but with the added bonus of 💩 and bad wind!

I have started taking buscopan for both!

It works a treat... they have them for both ie period buscopan and ibs buscopan but the ibs ones cheaper! The pharmacist told me there exactly same ...

Start taking them as soon as u feel discomfort for either and it soon goes as it stops the cramps.

I think there very much related to each other i find both usually flare up about the same time of the month.

I also have a great osteo who deals with digestive problems so he keeps my groin ,lower back And stomach all nice and chilled so the muscles stay relaxed coz as soon as they tighten up that is i got ibs again.

Also i used to find when i was on pill it was still like my body knew i was gona b due on so it could b bit of both.

Anyway... buscopan!!!! Pappermint oil capsules and some painkillers! Will do trick and give ur belly a nice massage... if u google digestive massage for ibs there alot of videos of site it really works

I use meberverine for my ibs (similar to buscopan) and I take them 3 times a day and I also take the pill because my periods are so bad but it also helps my ibs sometimes, thank you

K x

Hi, yes, I too get this..but my lower abdominal pain is mostly from chronic constipation..years of it. When I get that "pulling" sensation it's either by my groin going up to my abdomen or sometimes I get that pelvic pain..the only diagnosis (already have had upper and lower abdominal barium follow through), Sigmoidscopy, Gynecological routine testing, cat scan, colonoscopy. But it seems like each time the pain is from a UTI or even bladder infection. Which is where that "pinching" or "pulling" is coming from. Have you had a cultured urine test to rule anything like that out?

I am same way. Feel like my insides are falling out!!

This is how mine feels too.

Hello, this is my general response to help people find a baseline. First, go to the doctors and get yourself checked for intestinal infections, and whatever other tests they want to do. Most people find they are all clear, and that IBS is a condition brought on by our modern diet, freely accessible food, sedentary lifestyles and is usually initially set off by a GI infection or other trauma to the GI tract. The gut becomes hypersensitive to certain triggers, and the official description is that a physical brain-gut dysfunction develops which causes the gut to over-reacts to very mild stimuli.

After 27 years of suffering with IBS I have found that the long-term solution that actually works is about FOUR key topics: your vitamins, daily fasting periods, toxins that are freely dished out by the food industry, and adrenalin control. You are effectively the manager of a “food nutrient extraction factory”, I know that may be obvious, but I have found that IBS is not about medicines, but about changing the way you run the factory, and learning how to get the best performance out of it. I don’t recommend any medicines, as they only work in the short-term and eventually become less effective, and I just don’t want to be dependent on medicines until one day when I have no other choice.

This is based on some excellent publications, and also by observing how healthy people live. But, if you are all clear from the doctor’s, then the first thing to sort out is your vitamins and the timing of your eating and fasting periods. An incident of food poisoning or infection can start you on a cycle that you need to make a really concerted effort to break out of. IBS causes vitamin deficiencies which are practically impossible to overcome in most people’s diets, especially because you are probably eating selectively to manage your symptoms. Your vitamin levels affect the health of your intestines, and the health of your intestines affects your vitamin absorption, so it is a vicious circle that you have to break. If your farts really stink like something died in your guts, then this is because partially undigested proteins are making it through to your large intestine and the amino acids lysine and arginine are being metabolized by bacteria into cadaverine and putrescine which are the compounds that give the smell to rotting flesh! – do not worry that you yourself are rotting, this is just temporary, but it shows that you really need to sort your digestion out.

So, get some really good, expensive, multi-vitamins (ideally constituted for your age) and take them without fail every day before your breakfast. Get a blood test for Vitamin D and get you doctor to judge your supplement level required in IU’s to get you well healthy for Vitamin D. Do not get vitamins with high calcium and magnesium content initially as certainly in large doses these minerals can mess you up as they consume your stomach acid, and magnesium particularly can give you diarrhoea. You should get enough of these minerals from your diet. If you are on the low FODMAP diet, go for all lactose free dairy products to boost your calcium, as unfortunately the diet tends to cut out almost all of the good calcium sources.

Second, sort out your fasting periods immediately. This is normally overlooked by GP’s, but is an absolutely essential element for resolving IBS. Your small intestine should be practically sterile, and your stomach acid along with bowel cleaning contractions during fasting (called MMC) will usually do the cleaning. But, you need to fast for this to be effective, and by that I mean, ABSOLUTELY NO eating in between meals, ideally drinking only water. Imagine that you never washed your dinner plates and just kept putting food on them all the time!, they would be filthy and full of bacteria. In your guts, this results in SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth), which is apparently responsible for 85% of IBS cases, but is only one of factors that you need to address. You need to give your small intestine plenty of time free of food for cleaning and maintaining the factory. The modern scenario of have cupboards full of rich foods permanently available day and night is a modern luxury outside of human evolution. Your stomach will sort itself out when you have got control of your small intestine (although if you've got gastritis you'll need to finish a course of omeprazole first), and then your large intestine will improve later as nutrients are more efficiently absorbed from your small intestine. Furthermore, you should be able to avoid future bouts of gastritis as during the fasting periods, your stomach acid is more neutral at nearly pH 4. As a basic program, eat a good breakfast at say 7am (porridge with 50% almond milk or lactose free milk) or what suits you and then a good lunch at 12 o'clock - absolutely no food in between. After lunch, no food at all for at least 5 hours, and eat well again for your evening meal because it has got to get you through the night. Ideally, no food after 7 pm, no supper or snacks, no food or milk at all until breakfast the next day.

You will feel hunger in the fasting periods, but this is doing you good!, and you must NOT respond to the hunger - only with water or black tea. This is CRITICAL. Importantly, when you are feeling better, do not resort to your old ways, you are still recovering, and you need to make a life-style change to have this level of discipline in your eating and continue with it. It takes a few weeks at least, and you need to persevere with this. You then need to maintain a healthy and consistent way of eating and always keep the vitamins topped to prevent you from relapsing. In a couple of weeks, you should be able to be getting off the low FODMAP diet, and begin mixing back in the higher FODMAPs. Eventually, you can almost forget about low FODMAPs altogether, depending on how well your small intestine is performing.

The third aspect of IBS is that some food additives are quite simply toxic for you and cause direct inflammation of the colon, allergic reaction of the colon, or they are laxatives that give you diarrhoea that you didn’t realise you were eating. These are to be considered separate to the usual SIBO and vitamin mechanisms that you are dealing with above:

1.) Try to seek out and eliminate “trans-fats”. These cause direct inflammation of the colon, and you will be more sensitive than most people and this confuses what is causing you trouble. Chips, hash browns, butter, doughnuts, popcorn and things cooked in cheap or old frying oil as you find in many restaurants and commercial products can give you colon pain directly through inflammation. It can take up to three or four days to recover from this inflammation, but trans-fats are bad for you in a miriad of ways (cardio-vascular and diabetes), not only by inflammation of the colon. There is evidence that as cooking oil is re-used that the trans-fats (and other compounds) increase. So, if you want fried food as a treat, do it at home with good oil at a low temperature, and use it only once. Ideally, starches should only be boiled, rather than fried.

2.) E407, or “Carrageenan” – is a food additive derived from a red seaweed, which is only present in small quantities as a thickener, but even at low levels it has been shown to be “highly inflammatory to the digestive tract” and associated with IBS, colitis and other GI diseases. There is loads of literature and objections to this substance on the internet. It is present in cheap Crème Caramels, and many other dairy and meat products. After weeks of good health, just one of these products knocks me out for 24 hours with colon bloating and pain. I have found this by trial and error several times. Food tests show that even the food grade carrageenan contains between 2 and 25% of the non-approved “degraded” carrageenan, which is colon damaging and carcinogenic. Some food agencies now prohibit this additive altogether, and it may be responsible for a lot of IBS cases. It might be found in chocolate milk, cottage cheese, cream, crème caramel, ice cream, almond milk, diary alternatives, such as vegan cheeses or non-dairy desserts, coconut milk, creamers, hemp milk, rice milk, soy milk, and particularly processed meat. It is used extensively in cheap meats and is even injected into beef joints – so always get organic or local butcher fresh good quality meat!). It may be labelled as E407 or Carrageenan, but if you’ve got IBS, consider it as highly toxic for you.

In the same category is carboxy methyl cellulose (CMC) which is more widely used in the food industry, but has similar toxicology in animal studies, giving inflammation of the colon. However, the jury is still out on CMC to its impact on humans.

I’ll also put here mono-sodium glutamate (MSG). Clinical trials and several scientific literature articles connect MSG with IBS, so given the option to avoid it you should avoid it.

Also, NICE advises against the use of Aloe Vera for IBS, although for skin burn inflammation it is miraculous.

3.) E338, E339, E340, E341, E450, E451 and E452, are phosphates, diphosphates or polyphosphates as different salts. Natural phosphates are essential for life, and your body is full of organically bound phosphates, however, free ionic phosphates have several problems. Firstly, they are laxatives and will give you diarrhoea (sodium phosphate was once used to prepare patients for colonoscopies!). Secondly, they are associated with cardiovascular disease and accelerated aging. Since the 1990’s we are now exposed to twice the amount of added phosphate in foods, and this is bad. There are calls to have added phosphate labelled on products as a health warning. Particular culprits are mass produced sausages and processed meats (another reason to go to your local shop butcher), some cheeses, and cola (both diet and normal). Personally, for me all phosphate additives make me ill.

4.) Aspartame and other sweeteners definitely have a negative role to play in IBS for many people. As with the other toxins above, your ability to cope with them varies on a spectrum. If you look at some of the work of K.J. Mielke, many of these additives can be allergens or “pseudoallergens” and with time you can develop a reaction to them. The best sweetener for IBS is normal table sugar (sucrose), but it will rot your teeth in tea / coffee all day unless you do extra teeth cleaning. Ideally, general advice is to cut down on these stimulants, no more than 3 cups a day is the NICE guidance.

You must remember that there are many different causes of IBS, and one person’s solution may not be another’s - because of the allergies that you may or may not have developed, plus all other factors in play.

The fourth major topic in treating IBS, is adrenalin control. The GI tract is very sensitive to adrenalin. There is some literature about serotonin along a similar vein. A friend of mine says that “adrenalin not used by your muscles goes to your guts” and there may be some truth to this. If you have a busy life, you are probably not coasting along on a bed of feathers, and you probably not aware of your almost constantly high adrenalin levels – that is until you start actively lowering them. Personally, listening to whale music doesn’t lower my adrenalin, nor does yoga, because immediately afterwards I’m back in the busy life again. Crucially, what does work, is hard exercise to burn up your adrenalin and stop it interfering with the nervous system of your guts – and this is a powerful effect. My advice is to do something every day, two or three times if you can just before eating. Do whatever you can manage in your busy life, because it will all help. It will improve your gut motility, general health, bone strength, relieve tiredness, help you sleep better, improve your mental agility and help get your anxiety under control. To many people, exercise may seem like a waste of time, but it is equivalent to spending a bit of time sharpening an axe – it is not wasted recreational time, but time very well spent in servicing your whole body and mind.

Other points...

Red meats generally take a long time to digest, and also contain some trans-fats, but are usually tolerable. Only have them once a day, ideally for lunch, and just a light salad to go with them, not a load of starchy food or grains, as they have long digestion times. You don’t want carbohydrates being held up in transit because of heavy meat digestion late in the day.

There is a lot of support for L-glutamine to help with repair of your small-intestinal lining; this means buying 500g of the bodybuilder powder type and having a couple of tea-spoons of this a day - one before breakfast and one just before you go to bed, and you can have this in a light cordial drink.

I am not a fan of pro-biotics, I have never found that they actually do anything. However, I am a fan of pre-biotics, which is basically food for your large intestine good bacteria. This helps to strengthen the lining of your colon, and further improve your resilience to potential trigger foods and inflammation.

I should also mention hormone changes in women can be connected with IBS, affecting the brain-gut nervous system, but I have no personal experience in this. Similarly, hypnosis is actually recommended by NICE as the best alternative therapy, again trying to get a grip on the nervous dysfunction. Personally, I’ve yet to try it, but I wouldn’t rule it out.

Dealing with Flare-ups

First thing is, fix your SIBO as described above. But if you are on top of your SIBO, then a bowel toxin usually hits you 5 to 8 hours later as the food gets to your large intestine. The first line of attack is ibuprofen which is far more effective than paracetamol for bowel pain, and I find that 200 mg alone is enough. Second, a couple of Buscopan will stop the cramps. Third, have available in advance some linseed (seeds) and natural aniseed (Star Anise), and make the following tea: in a saucepan, add 1 teaspoon of linseed, ½ to 1 anise star, 1 teaspoon of sugar, a squirt of lemon juice (bottled is fine), and one mug full of water. Boil to simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, then sieve off the hot liquid back into the mug. This is a very effective remedy that I have used countless times, and it really does help. The reason that it helps (anecdotally) is that the “gooey” linseed extract coats the intestinal lining. There may be some truth to this, as some propose that the mechanism of bowel inflammation is a chemical attack on the mucus lining of the intestine which then allows food particles be exposed to the more delicate tissues underneath, causing inflammation. The linseed goo would provide a temporary replacement to the mucus lining, preventing further inflammation. In fact, NICE recommends oats and linseed for daily consumption.

A few references…

“Treatment and Management of SIBO — Taking a Dietary Approach Can Control Intestinal Fermentation and Inflammation, by Aglaée Jacob, MS, RD; Today’s Dietitian; December 2012, Vol. 14 No. 12 P. 16”.




When I used to get the sore stomach with my ibs i always ate a banana and the pain would ease..

Try it out.

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