I know I've been MIA for a week. Lots going on, but mostly good stuff: meeting up with Tim for a late breakfast and catching up; a visit from an out-of-town friend; meeting up with my niece and talking to her over dinner; shopping for a dress to wear to my best friend's son's wedding next week; shopping for a rug and comforter for our in-progress bedroom re-do (got the rug; no luck yet on the comforter)...and then just keeping up with the everyday stuff with housekeeping, grocery shopping, yard maintenance, little home projects, hair cut appointment, daily exercise, yoga classes, and vet appointments for Monkey. I'm glad to report that he's doing really well.
I know I don't normally mention health issues on this blog, but this medical issue is part of my life and something I felt I should share with you all since it's a common problem. I'm learning a lot about it and figured that perhaps I could help someone else as I go on a new journey and share what I learn.
I have IBS ~ or, Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I've actually had it for about four or five years, but it's been getting worse recently. Gut problems and food intolerances run in my family. Also, anxiety can trigger episodes of IBS and yeah, I have pretty bad anxiety, too. I'm not on any medication for my anxiety; I choose to treat it with natural ways such as meditation, yoga, walks in nature, deep breathing, and hot baths with essential oils. I'm not saying this is the right way for everyone; I'm just sharing what has worked for me.
With my IBS getting worse, I've done a lot of research and have read not only about IBS in general, but about diet. I have eaten a healthy, clean diet for several years now ~ meaning no processed foods (I read labels on everything!), no fast food, no foods containing high fructose corn syrup, soybean oil or any other hydrogenated oils, no nitrates or nitrites, no food colorings or MSG, no refined sugar, no excess sugar or sodium, etc. Basically, I stick to real, whole foods as much as I can. I'm not perfect and neither is my diet. I'm not saying I've never eaten any junk food in these past few years. It's more about being mindful about what you put in your body. BUT. That's not enough to help IBS!
I found a great website that has a ton of information about IBS. It's the
You can read about topics such as, What is IBS, Signs and Symptoms, Treatment, and Living with IBS. Each of these sections gets into more related detailed topics.
In relation to food, I started reading about the low FODMAP plan. FODMAPs are Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides And Polyols - basically, carboyhdrates that are found in foods. According to Stanford Hospital Digestive Health Center Nutrition Services, FODMAPs are osmotic - meaning they pull water into the intestinal tract, and may not be digested or absorbed well and could be fermented by bacteria in the intestinal tract when eaten in excess. A low FODMAP diet may help reduce symptoms of diarrhea, constipation, gas, bloating, and cramping. Click HERE for the link to the Stanford report. It also gives you the do's and don'ts for the FODMAP plan: which foods are OK to eat (low FODMAP foods) and which foods to avoid (high FODMAP foods). The International Foundation for Functional Gastroinestinal Disorders (link in previous paragraph) also has information about the FODMAP diet and even has a SYMPTOM DIARY where you can keep track of your food intake and symptoms.
I've started this low-FODMAP eating plan today. You're supposed to stick to it for six to eight weeks and then introduce other foods (the high FODMAP ones) back into your diet one at a time, so we'll see how it goes. I hope to share more with you as time goes on.
This blog post provides general information about health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked sites, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with their physician.
Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog or in any linked sites.
Hope everyone has a great weekend. Weather is supposed to be perfect here: warm and sunny. We have a couple of exciting things planned for this weekend, so I will be sharing with you soon. See you then!