Nutritional Medicine , Separating Fact from Fiction
A look at the opinions of doctors, the ones the patients don’t hear. . .
Listening to the charade of nonsensical conversations of doctors regarding the irritable bowel disease diagnosis is nothing short of an ethical travesty. On one day the Internal Medicine Doctor is overheard explaining to a resident that his patient has irritable bowel syndrome. No treatment was recommended. Two days later a gastrointestinal (G.I.) specialist was overheard explaining to his resident that this very same patient has a bowel dysfunction and would like to run some tests. When the resident asked about irritable bowel syndrome the gastrointestinal specialist’s reply was “Irritable Bowel is a junk phrase used by physicians that don’t know what is wrong with their patient.” Now, patients and clinicians wonder why there is misinformation.
To date, dietitians work under the assumption that the patient’s bowel is not happy for one reason or the other, call it what you will.
The symptoms are annoying & usually consisting of:
Constipation or diarrhea
Increased Colonic Mucous
Anxiety and Depression
Often associated with other complaints such as fibromyalgia
These symptoms occur without any evidence of functional or structural defect and has been heavily blamed on psychogenic factors in the past. It is the most common G.I. complaint.
What else is typically done with IBS? Doctors treat the symptoms and oddly stop there without finding the cause of the symptoms.
The most common dietary treatments are the following:
A gradual increase in fiber and water
Eliminate all known allergies and see an allergist to check for unknown allergies such as gluten
Try a**FodMap Diet (not all dietitians are trained in this diet)
Avoid sugar, fructose, lactose
Avoid polyols, caffeine, and alcohol
Other symptomatic relief includes:
* Probiotic Supplementation-lactobacillus, bifobacterium
* .2 -.4 enteric coated peppermint oil to reduce spasms taken 2x/day between meals
* Lactose enzymes to break down what lactose sneaks into the diet
Again, it is best to visit with a qualified, certified Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who is experienced in this area to help with individual diets and menus.
Kathryn Shattler, MS,RDN
Stump, S.E. 2008. Nutrition and Diagnosis Related Care.
Pizzorno JE, Murray MT, Joiner-Bey H. 2016. The Clinician's Handbook of Natural Medicine.
**FODMAPs are short chain carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine. They include short chain oligo-saccharide polymers of fructose (fructans) and galactooligosaccharides (GOS, stachyose, raffinose), disaccharides (lactose), monosaccharides(fructose), and sugar alcohols (polyols), such as sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol and maltitol. ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FODMAP accessed 11/20/16)