Northside Endoscopy Service

Procedure Information

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

What is IBS?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a functional bowel disorder not associated with any disease. The symptoms vary from person to person and are most frequently abdominal pain and bloating associated with alteration of bowel habit – constipation or diarrhoea.

Foods to Avoid

  • Wheat in large amounts (wheat being the greatest ingredient) found in breads, biscuits, cakes, pasta, noodles and pastries – replace with rice products or oats
  • Wind producing foods such as cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, lentils, baked beans, chickpeas
  • Onions, garlic, leeks
  • Apples, pears, stone fruit, honey

Dietary Changes

Response to dietary changes usually occurs within the first week but will increase over the next 8 weeks.

Adhere strictly to the diet foe 6-8 weeks then if symptoms have improved significantly you can challenge your diet by reintroducing individual foods.

After finding which foods trigger your IBS symptoms you can avoid these foods.

As a general rule don't exaggerate these foods, eat only small amounts in one serving and do not eat them every day.

Helpful Hints

  • Peppermint oil has an antispasmodic effect on the bowel causing the bowel muscle to relax which helps stop or reduce spasms. It can be useful for treating cramping pain and bloating
  • Drink peppermint tea after meals
  • Mintec can be taken as per packet instructions, Mintec may cause heartburn or make this symptom worse. Like Colofac, Mintec may lose effectiveness over time so should be reserved for severe episodes.

The use of probiotics help by adding friendly bacteria to the bowel – some include:

  • IBS Support
  • Inner Health Plus
  • VSL #3
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