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What Foods Cause IBS?

What Foods Cause IBS? What Foods Cause IBS? What Foods Cause IBS?

Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is a condition affecting the large intestine, or colon. Symptoms of IBS include abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, and gas and bloating. The causes of IBS are unknown at this time, but certain foods may trigger the symptoms. Triggering foods differ from person to person, so identifying problematic foods may help in developing a diet to reduce symptoms.

Insoluble Fiber

Inadequate fiber intake was once thought to be the cause of IBS. Recent studies, according to the July 2009 edition of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, indicate that consuming insoluble fiber may worsen symptoms of IBS. Insoluble fiber is found in whole wheat, wheat bran, kidney beans and leafy green vegetables. The other type of fiber, soluble fiber, may help reduce symptoms of IBS, particularly constipation. Soluble fiber is in oats, nuts, seeds, citrus fruits, carrots, broccoli and lima beans. Some people may need to reduce their intake of insoluble fiber to help decrease symptoms of IBS.

Fatty Foods

People with IBS may have more intestinal sensitivity to fat. Bloating and gas may occur after eating fatty foods. According to a study in the September 2002 edition of Gastroenterology, people with IBS experience more intestinal gas after eating fat than people without IBS. Individuals with suspected sensitivity to fat should reduce fat their intake to no more than 40 to 50g per day, according to the article in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Lactose

Consuming foods containing lactose, a sugar found in dairy products, does not cause IBS. However, symptoms of IBS may increase after consuming dairy products among people who are lactose intolerant, according to a study in the August 2001 issue of the European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. People with lactose intolerance lack an enzyme needed to digest a sugar found in milk, cheese and other dairy products, called lactose. Lactose is also found in unsuspected food items, including baked goods, powdered mixes and salad dressings. Food labels with the words milk powder, nonfat dry milk, dry milk solids, caseinate milk sugar and whey curds contain lactose. Consuming fewer products containing lactose may help reduce symptoms in some people with IBS.

Fructose

Fructose is a sugar that is found in fruits, honey, table sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Some people experience abdominal pain, bloating and gas after consuming fructose. According to a study in the October 2006 issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, people with IBS may experience fewer symptoms after reducing their intake of foods containing fructose.

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