Still contentious

How can a condition which effect the digestive system not be effected by the food it digests?  There are a surprisingly large amount of IBS sufferers who do not believe that diet effects their IBS in any way, they may well be right, we do not wish to challenge the believes and experiences of other sufferers.

What we will say, with confidence is that few sufferers will not be effected by trigger foods and substances.  From caffeine which effects the digestive systems motility, through to medication such as Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (aspirin, ibruprofen etc.) there are many foods and substances which will actively harm and antagonize IBS symptoms.

Mixed messages

Much of the problem In relationship to IBS dietary advice relates to the age old issue of the variety of IBS symptoms.  While this has improved (IBS is increasingly and correctly described as IBS-C, IBS-D, and so on.) There is still a gulf in the correct dietary advice for each sufferer.  There is also a great disparity in the nature of the general dietary advice to wade through.  

IBS Diet


The great white hope for IBS sufferers has been the low FODMAP diet.  In tests over seventy percent of sufferers improved, however they had the help of dietitians.  As word of the diet spreads it will be very interesting to see whether those fantastic figure hold up.

While we offer free low FODMAP recipe sites, we do feel able to be objective about the diet and understand that it will not work for all.  Speaking on a personal level, it would have been unrealistic to assume the low FODMAP diet to fix a lifelong motility issue. However, having suffered daily cramps, bloating and pain on top of motility issues, I am deeply grateful for the low FODMAP diet.

Whatever results you personally experience, we urge those who are able to seek the assistance of some of the wonderful dietitians out there.  The diet is not complicated and you can do it on your own, but it is so much better to have an expert there to help you through and make sense of it all.  It gives the diet the best chance of success.

You choose

We all have our beliefs about diet, whether you believe it helps or not it is worth pondering and experimenting with.  We delve into this subject in far greater detail on our main IBS-Health website however we feel it such an important topic that it is important to keep it under discussion. One thing that will never change is our belief that there is no single correct way:

The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.

Carl Jung

Diets, like clothes, should be tailored to you.

Joan Rivers

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”



Our favorite example of the varying dietary requirements of an IBS sufferer relate to fibre.  Many modern diets require that we eat more natural fibre, it is a vital component of a healthy diet for most.

If you give an IBS sufferer who’s symptoms relate to rapid motility and loose BM’s a lot of fibre the results will be unpleasant.  Foods such as quinoa, which is rich in protein and generally thought of as one of the healthiest foods around is high in fibre and will disagree with many IBS-D sufferers.

At the other end of the scale, insoluble fibre is absolutely vital for constipation.  You will rarely hear a dietitian suggest avoiding fibre as for the majority of the population it is vital.  We use this simple example to point out that there is no one way, no single piece of dietary advice for IBS sufferers en masse.

PH Neutral

Another factor which merits a mention relates to the PH levels in our food.  Many IBS sufferers have great results when they moderate the levels of acid in their food.  Fruit is sadly off the menu for many IBS-D sufferers, however it is always worth trying to eat fruit in moderation, even if it risks some discomfort.

‘Diets, like clothes, should be tailored to you.’ Joan Rivers IBS Health IBS Sano IBS Sano+ IBS Curo
Home Mobile Main

Please note:  All blogs and IBS Health articles have been written by IBS sufferers for fellow IBS sufferers.

We respect and appreciate all other opinions and write with the sole aim of providing empathy, support and ideas for others who live IBS everyday. We do not write cause offence.

While we have the shop and other sites, we have always ensured that we are ferociously independent and that our sites are free to use.

IBS Shop Everything you need  to tackle IBS in one place Mobile
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Tumblr Share on LinkedIn