The symptoms vary between individuals and affect some people more severely than others. They tend to come and go in periods lasting a few days to a few months at a time, often during times of stress or after eating certain foods.
The exact cause of IBS is unknown, but most experts think that it's related to increased sensitivity of the gut and problems digesting food.
These problems may mean that you are more sensitive to pain coming from your gut, and you may become constipated or have diarrhoea because your food passes through your gut either too slowly or too quickly.
Research has shown that certain carbohydrates can contribute significantly to your IBS symptoms. The carbohydrates are called Fermentable, Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides And Polyols (FODMAPS).
73% of sufferers have reported an improvement in their symptoms after following the diet.
The Low FODMAP diet is followed for 4-8 weeks before foods are reintroduced in a controlled, dose dependent manner.
The most common symptoms of IBS are:
Abdominal (stomach) pain and cramping, which may be relieved by having a poo
Change in your bowel habits – such as diarrhoea, constipation, or sometimes both
Bloating and swelling of your stomach
Excessive wind (flatulence)
Occasionally experiencing an urgent need to go to the toilet
A feeling that you have not fully emptied your bowels after going to the toilet
Passing mucus from your bottom