Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), is a functional bowel disorder which causes chronic or recurrent abdominal pain and symptoms such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation at least one day a week.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), is a functional bowel disorder which causes chronic or recurrent abdominal pain and symptoms such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation at least one day a week. With IBS:
IBS affects millions of people worldwide, primarily women under 50 . It’s not clear exactly what triggers IBS, but potential causes include:
Are there different types of IBS?
There are three main types of IBS, characterised based on your bowel patterns:
What is constipation?
Constipation is a change in your bowel habits or stool consistency. You have fewer than three bowel movements a week along with stool that is hard, dry, and difficult or painful to pass. You may also feel like not all stool has passed.¹
What is the gut-brain axis, and how does it affect IBS?
The gut-brain axis is a communication link between your central nervous system (your brain and spinal cord) and your enteric nervous system, which controls your digestive tract. Your gut and brain are connected through a complex system of nerves and chemical messengers. There is also evidence that your gut microbiota can affect your gut-brain axis.²
This system helps manage the muscle contractions in your digestive tract that control the movement of food and waste. It also manages the nerves that sense pain in your intestines. Because the gut-brain axis is a two-way communication system, feelings of stress or anxiety can affect how your gut works and the degree of abdominal pain you feel.
What are the best probiotic species and strains for IBS?
There is clinical evidence that certain species and strains of probiotics can support the improvement of IBS symptoms. For example:
The health of our gut is central to our overall good health. A healthy gut is able to digest the foods you eat, absorb the nutrients and then use those nutrients to fuel all the other cells in your body.1 If your gut isn’t healthy or working optimally, it can have wide-ranging effects on your health.