Women twice as likely to suffer from irritable bowel syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a gut sensitivity that prevents many people from eating the foods they enjoy. This gastrointestinal disorder triggers digestive symptoms such as stomach pain, bloating, diarrhoea, and constipation when particular foods are consumed. IBS affects up to 1 in 4 adults globally.

Founder of Newtricion Wellness Dieticians, Omy Naidoo, said there is no universal list of foods to avoid for people with irritable bowel syndrome. This is due to the fact that everyone’s digestion is unique and is triggered by different foods.

However, keeping a record for two to three weeks of your dietary consumption, symptoms, and other circumstances that may stimulate the digestive system may be beneficial in identifying which foods to avoid.

Research which was conducted by Cleveland Clinic Medical Center shows that IBS is most common among people in their late teens to early 40s.

Also, women are twice as likely as men to get IBS.

“It is critical to understand how your digestive system responds to various foods. For further assistance in managing IBS, visit a registered dietician who will make the necessary dietary recommendations”, said Naidoo.

Five foods which may improve your gut health:

  • Asparagus

Asparagus is high in insoluble fibre, which helps maintain regular bowel movements by adding weight to the stool. As a prebiotic fibre which is a type of dietary fibre that feeds the good bacteria in the gut, asparagus feeds beneficial bacteria in one’s guts. This good bacteria aids digestion reduces stress and reduces the risk of weight gain.

  • Ginger

Fresh ginger stimulates the digestive system and aids in the creation of stomach acid, allowing food to pass through the gut more quickly. Freshly grated ginger can be used in soups, stews, smoothies and stir-fries.

  • Low-Fructose Fruits

Bananas are great low-fructose fruits because they are high in fibre and the prebiotic fibre (inulin) in them helps healthy bacteria develop in the gut. Citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruit, as well as berries also contain less fructose, making them easier to digest and less prone to cause gas.

  • Leafy Greens

Leafy greens, such as spinach or kale, are high in fibre and include a form of sugar that aids in the growth of good bacteria in the gut. Vegetables that have been steamed are easier to digest, especially if you suffer from diarrhoea. Cooked salads are the greatest alternative if you enjoy salads but find them difficult to digest. Peeled veggies, tomatoes, and berries are also easier to digest.

  • Avocado

This superfood is high in fibre and important nutrients including potassium, which is crucial in aiding digestive health. As a low-fructose food, avocados are a good addition to your diet because they cause less gas. However, avocados should be eaten in moderation because they are also high in fat.


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