My teenage daughter has been struggling with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Q. Dear Terry, “My teenage daughter has been struggling with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for the past few years. Her symptoms are very embarrassing and she doesn’t want to go to school during flare-ups. We’re working to identify any food sensitivities she may have. What other natural options could help her?” — Edward L., Hammond, IN
A. Dear Edward, I believe that diet plays a crucial role when it comes to controlling IBS symptoms. If she’s not doing so already, I highly recommend avoiding all refined carbohydrates, grains, sugars, and soft drinks. Click on my healthy diet plan for more information or explore the Terry Talks Nutrition YouTube page for webinars on this topic. For additional information, I also recommend checking out the following websites: www.ketogenic-diet-resource.com and www.drperlmutter.com. She should also read the books, Grain Brain by Dr. David Perlmutter and Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis.
Just like the majority of the chronic health conditions seen today, gastrointestinal issues like IBS, have their roots in chronic inflammation. To address inflammation in the stomach and intestinal tract, we need to use a compound that can help modulate a certain kind of inflammation-promoting pathway, called 5-LOX (5-lipoxygenase). One of the best botanicals I know to control this type of inflammation is boswellia.
The boswellia I prefer is standardized to contain high levels of the key compound, AKBA, which gives boswellia many of its health benefits. While most of the compounds within boswellia are anti-inflammatory, there is one compound that is actually pro-inflammatory. Therefore, I recommend a boswellia that is low in beta-boswellic acid, which can actually cause inflammation.
In addition to boswellia, there are other safe and effective herbal medicines that keep the intestines free of inflammation and digestion running smoothly. Oils of coriander, fennel, caraway seed, and peppermint all help to regulate digestion by controlling bacterial populations, relaxing the stomach lining, and helping to control the symptoms of IBS.
I would take boswellia, coriander, fennel, caraway seed, and peppermint with each meal.
For additional support, she may want to consider adding in human-strain probiotics like Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, and Bifidobacterium bifidum. I would take these once or twice per day.
Terry . . . Naturally