The complex role of diet in IBS

A recent article on Action against Allergy’s website discusses the role of diet in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It’s a very complex issue, as anyone who has read a lot about IBS will know. After decades of research, experts still haven’t come to a “consensus as to whether dietary components may be the cause, trigger, or merely an exacerbating factor in an existing condition in the gastrointestinal tract”.

Researchers believe that a combination of factors trigger IBS. According to the charity, evidence is also lacking about food allergies or food intolerances being the culprits either. In short, the health condition, which affects up to 20% of the population today, is notoriously difficult to conduct trials on.

“In most cases a mixture of foods has been eaten in a meal suspected to include the offending ingredient, again making identification of the specific culprit next to impossible,” says the article’s author Dr Janice Joneja.

Action against Allergy’s article. “In the majority of cases it is suspected that food is not the cause of the symptoms of IBS (which typically include abdominal pain, bloating, flatus and altered bowel habit), but that food constituents “irritate” an already inflamed GI tract.”

You can read the full article on the Action against Allergy website.

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Next review: 19 November 2021