3. IBS Causes
The healthy GI tract serves as a barrier that prevents undigested food particles, microbes, toxins, and other undesirable substances from entering the body through the bloodstream. When the cells lining the intestinal wall become damaged, they break apart, allowing these substances to “leak” into the body, where they are treated as “foreign invaders” by the immune system. The immune system launches an attack to rid the body of these invaders, and inflammation can result. Studies have shown a link between IBS and leaky gut. Fortunately, leaky gut syndrome can be treated with a comprehensive elimination diet and a 4R program.
Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth
The symptoms of IBS are similar to those of Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), which can include gas, bloating, and diarrhea. SIBO occurs when the bacteria in our gut get out of balance and overgrow. In one study, nearly 80% of people with IBS were found to have SIBO. When the SIBO was treated, nearly half of the patients experienced improvement in their IBS. If you suspect that SIBO may be the underlying cause of your IBS, you can ask your doctor to order a SIBO breath test. This test will determine if SIBO is present, and will also provide helpful information indicating what treatment protocol will be most effective. Treatment for SIBO includes a 4R program, a low-carbohydrate diet, and prescription Xifaxan or Microb-Clear.