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What diet changes help treat IBS-D?

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Foods and drinks don’t cause irritable bowel syndrome with increased diarrhea (IBS-D), but some may trigger your symptoms or make them worse.

Alcohol, drinks with caffeine (like coffee and soda), carbonated drinks, chocolate, sorbitol (an artificial sweetener used in some gums and mints), fried food, and milk products may make IBS-related diarrhea worse.  Too much fiber can make your symptoms worse. You may need to experiment to figure out which types of whole grains, beans, fruits, and vegetables agree with your gut.

A FODMAP diet is often a choice. A form of low carb diet, it limits carbs that are "fermentable oligo-, di-, monosaccharides and polyols" and are notoriously hard to digest.

Be sure to drink at least six to eight glasses of water a day because diarrhea can cause dehydration.

SOURCES:

Canavan, C. , 2014. Clinical Epidemiology

Cleveland Clinic: "IBS."

Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America: "Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Similarities and Differences."

FDA: "FDA Approves Two New Therapies to Treat IBS-D."

International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders: "IBS With Diarrhea," "What Is the Relationship of Stress to IBS?"

Office on Women's Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: "Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Fact Sheet."

Arun Swaminath, MD, gastroenterologist, Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on February 9, 2020

SOURCES:

Canavan, C. , 2014. Clinical Epidemiology

Cleveland Clinic: "IBS."

Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America: "Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Similarities and Differences."

FDA: "FDA Approves Two New Therapies to Treat IBS-D."

International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders: "IBS With Diarrhea," "What Is the Relationship of Stress to IBS?"

Office on Women's Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: "Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Fact Sheet."

Arun Swaminath, MD, gastroenterologist, Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on February 9, 2020

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