An integrative Approach for Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a multi-factorial disorder that can have emotional, physical and nutritional influences. In treating this common condition, all areas should be addressed.

Hypothesis: IBS may result from an insult to the GI environment

IBS symptoms can arise after a significant stressor, illness, infection or medical treatment. This insult can disrupt the dynamic ecosystem of the GI environment which can change communication patterns that occur between mucus, bacteria and enterocytes. If this interface becomes disrupted, chronic inflammation that further compromises its function can lead to increased intestinal permeability. Disruption of the barrier allows exposure of the gut associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) to antigens that stimulate continued inflammation, increased intestinal permeability and symptoms of IBS.

Relationship Centered Care

IBS is best treated by a continuous relationship with a practitioner who knows the patient well. This relationship will give insight into how to best organize the many therapeutic options that will result in a greater quality of life with fewer symptoms.

TherapyApplicationEvidence Rating
(SORT Criteria)63
Cognitive Behavioral TherapyReferral to health psychology
Consider journaling
HypnosisSelf-hypnosis techniquesB
Relaxation TrainingBreathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imageryC
Exercise/MovementRegular aerobic activityC
Elimination DietRemoval of common food triggersB
ProbioticsB.infanti 1 x 108 CFU daily
(Brands: Floragen #3)
FiberGuar Gum 5 gms daily
Ground Flax Seed, 1 Tbsp on food or in juice, smoothie BID
Psyllium, 1 Tbsp in 8-10 oz of water or juice BID
L-Glutamine5 gms BIDC
Zinc37.5 mg dailyC
Peppermint0.2-0.4 ml enteric coated capsules TIDB
Cromolyn Sodium400 mg TID to QIDB

Please see the downloads section for more detailed clinician and patient information.

Disclaimer: This information is for general education. Please work with your health care practitioner to use it in the best way possible to promote your health and happiness.