Friday, July 04, 2014

IBS sufferers, take heart . . .

"A 2005 Study in France took 276 subjects, both male and female, all diagnosed with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). Over the first 2-3 week period, the subject's stool samples and symptoms were recorded. The subjects were then asked to consume two servings of fermented milk twice a day. Bifidobacterium animalis was in the fermented milk. The results suggested some beneficial effect on discomfort and bloating in constipation-predominant IBS."  1.

To take advantage of these potential benefits yourself, read the labels on yogurt, buttermilk, kefir, and other probiotic fermented foods.  Look for the words "live culture" and Bifidobacterium animalis (or Bif. animalis or B.  animalis).  Eating some probiotic fermented food every day or at least several times a week may be helpful; or better yet, if you can, follow the studies protocols and have some twice day!  Avoid brands that claim to have exclusive or improved cultures, as they may be GMO organisms.  If this possibility concerns you, look for the USDA Certified Organic or the Non-GMO Verified icon(s) on the label.

To help keep your internal flora healthy and active--eliminating glyphosate herbicide residues from your diet is considered useful.  Some researchers have shown that glyphosate may harm our important beneficial flora.  The very first step we can take towards avoiding glyphosate involves eliminating all corn, soy, and sweeteners that are not either USDA Certified Organic or grown by farmers we personally know who do not use this chemical on their fields and crops.

As for myself, it has been many, many years since I suffered from IBS.  I learned to deal with stress in more healthy ways; I learned to make choices that reduced stress in my life.  I learned to keep myself hydrated, to eliminate foods that were irritating to me, to make a habit of walking (which has beneficial effects on digestion), and to have healthy natural sources of probiotic fermented foods in my diet.  I am sensitive to dairy products, especially fermented dairy products, so I ferment at home.  

I ferment organically grown garden fresh greens (similar to sauerkraut or kimchi) as well as organic bilberry nectar.  Home fermentation is not for everyone, as there is always the possibility of catching a wild culture.  You can find a wealth of information on the Internet regarding the benefits of probiotics as well as instructions  and kits for home probiotic fermenting.

1. The quote above comes from the link below.  For more on Bifidobacterium animalis including links to further information, please see:

Please feel free to share your personal experiences, tips, and questions in the comments section!

No comments: