Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal disorder making mealtimes a challenge for many people. With such a condition, you may notice that certain foods trigger uncomfortable digestive symptoms like irregular bowel movements, cramping, gas, bloating, diarrhea or constipation. It’s no surprise that living with IBS can have a significant effect on a person’s quality of life.
While there are foods which help prevent the symptoms of IBS. Everyone, responds to food differently. One has to be their own food detective by recording their intake and symptoms so as to rule out trigger foods that your gut may not be able to handle easily.
Foods Which Help Alleviate Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Here is a list of food you can stock as they are gentle on your system. You can use them to create satisfying, healthy meals and snacks without upsetting your stomach.
- Cooked Vegetables: Vegetables are high in fiber and may worsen symptoms for IBS in some people. But cooked vegetables are safe to eat as cooking makes them easy to digest. Eggplant, carrots, sweet potato, yam, broccoli, bell pepper, potato, zucchini, baby spinach, pumpkin, bottle gourd, green beans and celery in cooked form with some added herbs like basil, coriander, mint, ginger, lemongrass, rosemary, parsley and thyme enhance flavor and are safe to eat for most people.
- Fruits with low Fructose: Fructose in fruits can cause discomfort if you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. So choose low fructose fruits like banana, blueberry, cranberry, kiwi, strawberry, lemon, lime, raspberry, pineapple and papaya. Make sure you don’t eat too many fruits at a time or you may overwhelm your body’s ability to absorb fruit sugars without fermentation.
- Gluten-free/Low Gluten Grains: People with IBS can safely tolerate gluten to some extent. Some gluten-free grains can be a great addition to a hassle free IBS diet. You can enjoy rice, cooked oatmeal, quinoa, tapioca and millet every day without being worried about IBS flares.
- Eggs: can easily be a part of your breakfast, lunch or dinner. However, some people report sensitivity with protein in egg whites or fat in egg yolk, but for most people, they are easy to digest.
- Lean Meats: They are easy to digest due to low fat and negligible fiber content. They provide a good amount of protein.
- Fish: Being rich in anti-inflammatory omega 3 fatty acid, fish can be a great addition to your diet. Since inflamed gut may be a reason for your IBS, consuming fish can actually help. Good fish sources are anchovies, sardines, mackerel, black cod, herring, rainbow trout and salmon.
- Lactose-free Milk: Most people can handle small amounts of lactose found in dairy unless they have lactose intolerance. But if you have more than your intestines can handle, it may cause bloating and gas. Some lactose-free milk options can be used in such conditions like oat milk, rice milk and soy milk as an alternative to cow milk.
- Nuts and Seeds: are high in fiber, protein and omega 3 – which are good for overall health and your gut flora. They are especially good for IBS. You can add them to your salads, smoothies or oatmeal. Safer options in limited amounts for IBS are almonds, Brazil nuts, sesame seeds, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, pine nut, hazelnuts, pecan and macadamia nuts.
Along with carefully choosing food that suits you, a healthy lifestyle with a low fat diet, regular exercise, managing stress and mindful eating often makes a great difference. Before you begin consuming any of the above foods, do consult your doctor, nutritionist or dietitian.
For more information or tips to alleviate Irritable Bowel Syndrome, speak to a GOQii Coach by subscribing for Personalised Health Coaching here.