On Friday 23 March, my mum and I went to the Vitality Show at Earl's Court. It is our annual day trip now. After we eventually got there (got the wrong train - my fault - and had to go back one stop, we settled ourselves. I saw a stand from Haymax sellling 2 for 3 of their little pots, so when we had made ourselves comfortable, we went back there and I bought a tin of 3 pots. Money saved. I wanted to go to a talk at 12, so we made our way to the stage where it was being held. Being early, we found a table to sit at and eat our lunch. By this time, I had looked at the map and the list of exhibitors, and cirlced which ones I wanted to visit. We had our lunch, then went to the stage. It was a talk about IBS. And here is what I learnt (some of it I knew already from personal experience).
IBS can be caused by the way we feel and live our lives. It can inc headache, backache, tiredness and irritable bladder. It is an individual illness. One thing that was mentioned that can cause it is FODMAP, which is a name for various foods that are fermented or can ferment in your body. They inc plums, apples and peaches. Again it is an individual illness, as some foods can affect people, some don't. (I can't eat apples, only properly cooked ones). Some people say it is the food that causes the IBS, but it is your gut. You can sense when your stomach is upset, so don't eat then. For instance, if you have an infection, it makes your gut more sensitive. (I know about this, as years ago I had gastroenteritis, and that brought on my IBS badly, so that when I ate dairy foods, the IBS came back).
Thought and gut feelings go together. For instance. If you are upset, then your gut will get so, too. I know this from personal experience. Another feeling that can cause IBS, esp with me, is stress. If I get stressed, then my insides do, too, so movements inside slow down, and make it hard for me to go. This causes an uncomfortable problem down below for me. It was said that some people like probiotics but the Dr who did the talk said they are not for all. He said that the gut breaks down toxins from the environment, esp social environment. Eg anything that rekindles a memory of a bad food experience can bring it on.
Food intolerances can start in childhood.
Foods can have meaning. Eg chocolate can either be seen as a treat or guilt.
It is not what you eat but the way you eat that can cause IBS. If you rush your food, then you are likely to get an upset.
The dr talking, said they are looking at ways for self-management of IBS. Inc dietary help, finding ways to hlep inc yoga and meditation for emotion. They are thinking of possibly putting someone in GP practices with experience of IBS to help with self-care. I think this is a good idea. The dr is now semi-retired from his practice, but now works with the IBS network. They are aiming to get a plan out this year for self-management. I will look out for this as this is an illness I know a lot about, as I have had it for many years.