Understanding the Link Between Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

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There have been a variety of different studies that have shown that small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, or SIBO, and irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, do have something in common. While they both affect your stomach, it goes even deeper than that. It is a good idea to take a closer look at each of these conditions to be able to tell how they truly relate.

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

First, take a look at the small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. This is a condition where you have much more of the bacteria in your stomach than you should. The symptoms of this condition include bloating, abdominal gas, abdominal pain, cramps, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, malabsorption, and other systematic symptoms like headaches, fatigue and joint pain. Does that sound familiar to you at all?  Sure it does!  It is much similar to the symptoms that are associated with IBS.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome causes many of the same signs and symptoms as the SIBO condition, but it goes even further. It is a condition in which the function of your gastrointestinal tract don’t work properly. Most of the time, if you have IBS, you will have symptoms very often. The SIBO doesn’t always cause regular symptoms. You may notice a lot of changes in your stool, and even some changes in how often you have a bowel movement. Some people have IBS with constipation, while others may have more diarrhea and loose stools with their IBS. 13 Foods to Avoid if You Have IBS.

How the Two Relate

So, now that we have a better understanding of each of these stomach conditions, it is time to determine how they relate to one another. In many cases, irritable bowel syndrome is actually a result of the small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.

It is actually one of the most common causes of IBS, and recent studies have shown that fixing the problem of the bacterial overgrowth can actually improve your IBS symptoms by up to 75 percent.

Understanding the Link Between Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

With the understanding that IBS can be caused by SIBO, it is important to understand why this happens. With SIBO, you will often times have a lot of bloating due to the overgrowth of bacteria production. This can cause stomach pain, distention, flatulence and other stomach problems.

The gas can then lead to constipation, which is one of the biggest factors in IBS for most people.  So, with that being said, it would make sense to actually take some time to figure out how to combat your SIBO in order to prevent IBS.

How to Overcome SIBO

Overcoming SIBO is not really the easiest thing in the world, at least not if you aren’t willing to make some changes to your diet and lifestyle. It is important for you to approach your diet in a different way.

You need to eat a special diet that helps to limit your carbs, because this can really help to reduce your level of bacteria.  Carbohydrates are the energy source for many bacteria, which makes sense that if you cut back on carbs you can really see a difference.

If you don’t get the results that you are looking for with this diet, then you can also change to an elemental diet. This includes using antibiotics and other antioxidants that can found in many herbal supplements to decrease your level of bacteria quickly.

When you do this, it can help to give your body the nutrients that it needs, without giving the bacteria any other energy or food.

Why Its Important to Make These Changes

If you don’t make these necessary changes to your diet, you will often times find that you have a lot of trouble with your stomach, and it isn’t usually something that is going to go away on its own. You have to make sure that you are doing everything that you can do in order to ensure that you see the results that you would like to see.

If you still have problems, it may be time to discuss the issue with your doctor to see if they can give you some other helpful tips that will be beneficial when it comes to getting rid of both SIBO and IBS altogether.

Just remember, IBS and SIBO can reoccur, so you have to continue to be proactive when it comes to keeping a healthy gut so that doesn’t happen.  If you do this, you will have a much higher quality of life and really be able to enjoy yourself.

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