I recently had a friend ask me for information on treatment options for irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. IBS is actually several different but similar auto-immune diseases of the intestinal system, the most serious being Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (UC). Having been diagnosed with UC 10 years ago, and having cured myself without medication (I haven’t had any symptoms in over three years), I will share what worked for me.

I began by eliminating several foods from my diet such as coffee, foods from the nightshade family (potatoes, bell peppers, eggplant, and tomatoes), high-fat foods, and spicy foods. I also began eating a lot more vegetables, and cut way down on dairy, meats, and white flour products (breads, crackers, pastas). In other words, I ate a more alkaline (vegetables) diet to balance out the acidic foods (meats, dairy, grains). Too much acidity in the diet can exacerbate any inflammatory condition one may have including IBS, arthritis, etc. I also started taking a tbsp or two of coconut oil (organic, extra-virgin, the good kind), which is believed to ease smooth muscle contractions. Smooth muscle is what lines your intestines, arteries, etc. I also made sure I exercised almost daily, at times for only 10 minutes, but I made a point to do something, anything to help bolster my immune system.

The change in my distress began almost immediately, though it took several years of staying the course to heal completely. Slowly, I added the restricted foods to see which ones I could tolerate, and today, it seems that I can eat most of what I ate before. I still lean heavily on vegetables and fruits as my dietary mainstays, but enjoy most everything. My bowels are happy too.

If anyone would like to share any info or personal experience with IBS, please email me at john@haveithealth.com

Stay well, John R Blilie, M.S.