Non Immunological: Identifying a food related problem can sometimes be quite hard. Irritable bowel syndrome symptoms such as diarrhoea, constipation, wind, bloating, burping, stomach pains, reflux, nausea or mouth ulcers may occur due to intolerances to foods. Read more below.

irritable bowel syndrome food pyramid

Behavioural problems or symptoms including headaches, migraines or hives may also improve with food management strategies. Read more  Click

There is no simple test to determine whether or not you are intolerant to a food. It is NOT an allergic reaction so skin prick tests are not helpful in sorting out this problem.

Possible symptoms include: stomach pain, diarrhoea & or constipation, bloating, wind, reflux, nausea or vomiting

The term Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is given to a set of symptoms experienced by people when no other gut related disease can be diagnosed. Pain or gut discomfort is often experienced once or more in a week, which is relieved by passing a bowel movement. Diarrhoea, constipation or alternating forms of these are often experienced. Wind, bloating, burping, reflux, nausea or vomiting may also be present.

You are advised to see a Gastroenterologist initially to ensure there is no underlying disease that is creating the symptoms experienced. If this has been ruled out, an investigation to find possible dietary triggers could be undertaken.

People commonly alter their food intake to try to control the symptoms. While some people find dietary triggers, in others, food does not play a role in contributing to symptoms. There are a lot of books on the market trying to address these issues by manipulating foods to decrease the symptoms. Each book has its own theory and the foods in their diets are broken into groups based on these theories. Some divide by thiol groups, histamine content, fibre content, food combining, no grains, nothing commercially processed, nothing genetically modified etc, etc. There is no one way to join all the theories together and come up with just one possible diet therapy.

The most common diet regimes used by Health professionals to investigate this are
1. Food Chemical Intolerances     Click

2. FODMAPS      Click

The investigative dietary regime chosen generally depends on the symptoms you are experiencing. Both will limit your choice of foods. For good nutrition it is best to follow through the diet investigative protocols with a dietitian who can advise you on food substitutes and suitable supplements if required. The intended outcome of both diet regimes is to find substances within the foods that your body reacts to. Ultimately you will eat LESS of the foods that contain these substances.

Total avoidance of these substances is not the desired outcome.

At the end of the food investigation process you are advised to put back foods to the diet, which contain substances to which you reacted, to find a level of tolerance of these foods that you are comfortable with. The end goal is to have you eat foods from the 5 food groups, but your choices within some of those food groups will be reduced. If the end choices are quite limited, then suitable substitutes need to be advised to maintain overall nutrition in your long-term diet.