How to Cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome in a Few Days – Eggs Don’t Cause Heart Attacks

the ultrasimple diet

How to Cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome in a Few Days

Aug 25, 2013 | Vol 1

How to Cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome in a Few Days

This week’s question is, “I have irritable bowel syndrome. What do I do about it? What causes it? How do I fix my leaky gut? Do I take drugs?”

Irritable bowel syndrome is a huge problem that affects almost 50 million Americans or almost one of every six people.

It’s one of the most common reasons for visits to the doctor, and yet, most doctors have no clue how to treat it or what’s really causing it.

That’s where functional medicine comes in.

Functional medicine is a not a new treatment or test or modality. It’s a whole new way of thinking about solving the puzzle of chronic symptoms and diseases.
Irritable bowel syndrome is a fantastic model for illustrating how functional medicine works.

So, what is irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, anyway?

Irritable bowel syndrome is what doctors call symptoms of bloating or gas, distention, constipation, diarrhea, cramping—where your bowel is just irritable. When you look in there during a colonoscopy, you don’t really see anything. It looks normal.

There is no structural problem, no tumor or obvious cause. The root problem is dysfunction of your gut ecosystem. Most doctors often suggest eating more fiber or taking Metamucil. That’s generally not very effective.

IBS causes needless misery for millions of people.

But it is fixable!

The Causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome

In functional medicine, we know that one disease can have many causes (or that one cause can create many diseases—think gluten).

If you have five people with IBS, the causes may be quite different for each person. In functional medicine, we focus on getting to the root cause of disease.
There are really only five causes of all disease: allergens, microbes or imbalance of the bugs in your gut, toxins, poor diet, and stress. All of these can trigger symptoms and create thousands of diseases.

Remember those five people with irritable bowel? Each one of them may have different causes for the exact same symptoms.

Let’s go through the causes of IBS and look at what you can do to get rid of it once and for all. It’s extraordinary how simple it is once we know the right thing to do.

There’s a funny joke I always tell about how important it is to know what to do. This patient got his appendix out and the doctor sends him a bill for $1,000, and the patient goes, “Wow! That’s lot of money for such a simple operation.”

The doctor is like, “You’re right.” And he sends him another bill: $1 for taking out your appendix, $999 for knowing what needs to be taken out.

Functional medicine is sort of like that. We know exactly what to do and how to take things out. We treat the system not the symptoms.

Food Allergens or Sensitivities

The first thing that can happen is that foods can irritate your bowel and digestive system.

They are called food sensitivities. It’s not a true allergy like a peanut allergy or shellfish allergy, but it’s a more mild food sensitivity. But it can cause terrible symptoms, and they are very common.

The most common thing in food that people react to is gluten. That’s the protein found in wheat, barley, rye, oats, and spelt.

It’s a very common reaction even if you don’t have celiac disease, which is a full-blown reaction to gluten. Even if your doctor tells you your tests for gluten antibodies or celiac are normal, you can still have a severe reaction.

Dairy, another big problem. This can be caused by the lactose, which about 75 percent of people can’t digest.

It causes bloating, gas, and diarrhea. But dairy can also create problems even if you don’t have lactose intolerance. Lactaid milk helps with lactose intolerance but not other dairy reactions.

Dairy contains proteins (like casein and whey) that also can cause irritation and inflammation in your gut.

There are many, many other foods people can react to, including soy, corn, and eggs.

In my book, The UltraSimple Diet, I’ve created a comprehensive elimination diet to get rid of all the most common problem foods for one week.
It allows you to connect the dots and learn whether what you are eating is causing your symptoms. Most people don’t connect those dots very well.

There are also some tests available that you can use to assess food sensitivities and gluten reactions. Check out the “How to Work with Your Doctor to Get What You Need” guide for more information. It’s a great resource to help you figure out what tests you need, and it’s free!

Bad Bugs in the Gut

The second cause of IBS is imbalances in your gut ecosystem. You have enormous ecosystem of bugs in there—500 species of bugs. There are one hundred trillion bacterial cells in there.

There are 10 times as many bacterial cells as your own cells. You are only 10 percent human!

In fact, there is a hundred times as much bacterial DNA in you as your own DNA. So, you are only really 10% human! And these bugs have to be in balance for you to be healthy. We call this the human microbiome.

If you have bad bugs growing in there or an overgrowth of yeast, or if you have parasites or worms, you can get IBS.

Also, if you have bugs in the wrong spot, you can have a problem. Most of the bacteria are in your large intestine, but sometimes, they kind of move up and go into the small intestine. That’s not very good, because that should be sterile.

When you eat food that’s starchy—bread, cereal, pasta, rice, or sugary foods—the bacteria ferment the sugars in the food. It’s like the way apple cider blows up in the plastic container in your fridge when it goes bad. That’s what happens in your gut.

The bacteria ferment the sugars in the food you eat, and you blow up. That’s why you get bloating right after meals. We call that postprandial bloating or bloating after you eat or what one of my patients calls a “food baby.”

That’s a very common symptom of bacterial overgrowth. We call that SIBO, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. It’s very common and a very easy thing to treat if you use the right modality. Most doctors never diagnose or treat this properly.

Yeast overgrowth is also common in your gut. It’s sort of like a garden where the weeds take over. Yeast overgrowth happens because of taking antibiotics, steroids, birth control pills, or acid-blocking drugs.

It also occurs if you eat a lot of sugar, drink alcohol, or you are diabetic.

All these things tend to cause overgrowth of yeast, and that can be treated with an antifungal, such as Diflucan, Nystatin or Sporanox. Antifungal herbs, such as oregano, can also be effective to reboot your gut.

I’m not a big fan of medication, but sometimes for irritable bowel, a good non-absorbed antibiotic called Xifaxan will clear out the SIBO (bacterial overgrowth) and stop bloating and diarrhea.

Using the Xifaxin and an antifungal is almost like hitting the reset button on your computer; you reboot your gut and then you start over.

Other bugs can also be a problem. Stool testing may be needed to identify parasites or worms. At The UltraWellness Center, we do innovative stool testing that examines your gut ecosystem. We are not only looking for infections but imbalances in your ecosystem.

Do you have enough of the good bacteria? Do you have worms or parasites or yeast or other bad bugs?

You can often treat these things based on symptoms or your medical history and then test if you don’t get better. The key is to reboot your gut by getting rid of the bad stuff and putting in the good stuff.

How To Heal Your Gut

How do you heal your gut? First we remove the bad stuff (bad bugs, yeast, parasites, worms, food sensitivities). We replace the things that that are missing (enzymes, prebiotics from fiber). We re-inoculate with healthy bacteria (probiotics), and we repair the gut with the right nutrients.

We talked about getting rid of the bad stuff (bugs and food sensitivities).

Now, we have to add in the good stuff.

Replace digestive enzymes to help break down the food while your gut is healing. You may need those for two or three months.

Then, you need to re-inoculate your gut with healthy bacteria using probiotics including Bifidobacteria, Lactobacillus, and other strains of bacteria. They help to repopulate the healthy gut flora and allow your digestion to work better.

You can also eat probiotic-rich foods like kimchi, kombucha, miso, or sauerkraut. Sometimes, you can also eat yogurt if you are not allergic to dairy. Try unsweetened sheep or goat yogurt. These are all foods that help your gut flora get and stay healthy.

Vitamin A, zinc, omega-3 fats (fish oil), evening primrose oil, and glutamine all help repair the gut. We also use herbs like quercetin and turmeric to reduce inflammation and heal a leaky gut.

When your gut is “leaky,” food proteins and microbial proteins leak into your bloodstream, causing inflammation.

A leaky gut occurs when the gut lining is interrupted. Normally, your intestinal cells are stuck together like Legos.

But when they come apart or separate, food proteins and bacteria leak in and they start pissing off your immune system. This triggers inflammation.

Not only will you have irritable bowel but a leaky gut can also cause joint pain, fatigue, cognitive problems, depression, allergies, congestion, and rashes like eczema.
You name it; many symptoms and diseases are caused by leaky gut.

In Functional medicine, the gut is one of the most important systems to focus on and to get working well, because that’s the seat of your health. It’s connected to everything else.

Action Items

  • Do an elimination diet to get rid of common food sensitivities. Get rid of dairy, gluten, and sugar. Try The UltraSimple Diet for two to three weeks. If you find you are better, then you may want to stay off the trigger foods long term.
  • Try herbs for cleaning out bad bacteria or yeast. I recommend the Candibactin BR two capsules three times a day for a month for bacterial overgrowth and Candibactin AR two capsules three times a day for yeast overgrowth.
  • Consider testing for food sensitivities and for stool issues (see How To Work With Your Doctor to Get What You Need.) Consider Cryex 3 testing for gluten sensitivity when conventional tests for gluten are negative.
  • Add digestive enzymes for two to four months. I like Enzyme Complete by Kirkman. Take two capsules with each meal.
  • Add probiotics. Use high potency probiotics. With my patients, I use Ther-Biotic Complete by Klaire Labs 2 twice a day.
  • Add nutrients for healing a leaky gut. These can be taken in a shake or as separate supplements. I recommend for my patients UltraInflamX (rice protein, turmeric, ginger, quercetin, zinc, and nutrients), two scoops a day as a shake, plus G.I. Integrity (glutamine), four capsules twice a day, and fish oil OmegaGenics 720, two capsules twice a day.
  • If you are constipated (not having one or two normal bowel movements a day) take magnesium citrate capsules 150 to 300 mg once or twice a day. If you take too much you will get loose stools so just take less.

By following this approach, most people can heal their irritable bowel.

If you are not getting better, you may need medical help.

You may need treatment for SIBO or bacterial overgrowth. I recommend Xifaxin (a non-absorbed antibiotic), 550mg twice a day for 10 days, and Diflucan, 100mg a day for three to four weeks to kill the yeast. Sometimes treatment for parasites or worms is needed based on the testing.

Please share your experiences in the comment section below. And feel free to send in your questions, so that next week, I may make a house call to you. To read more about what causes irritable bowel syndrome and how to cure it, check out my blog here.

Wishing you health and happiness,
Mark Hyman, MD

About Mark Hyman, MD

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86 Responses to How to Cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome in a Few Days

Oats , have a lot of benefits , but if you are sensible to gluten can you take them ?

Bob’s Red Mill makes a great GF oats. I have read that it is based on your level of sensitivity but a gluten sensitive person can safely eat oats 1x per week. If you have Celiac you can not eat oats-only what I’ve read.

Dear Dr. Hyman, I am a 45 year old male who has low testosterone and tried everything but the only thing that works is bi-weekly injections. I am disgusted by the fact that my body isn’t producing testosterone normally anymore and that I will have to take injections for the rest of my life. I would really like to get off this stuff and do it naturally. I have been told by several doctors that there are no alternative treatments. I find this hard to believe. Please let me know if there are any supplements or alternative treatments to replace my Low T.

Thanks for all the help

i have had digestive trouble since moving into a senior community. i have a beautiful unit, am 85, like fruits and vegetables, never had trouble with good organic bread, but these people all look so sick. the dining room is beautiful but the food is atrocious. and the people are sick and mean. i made a mistake and think i would be better off to cooking this nicely equipped kitchen. i cant afford to move. i buy organic to supplement
and the md says i have ptsd and ibs. i wish icould come to lenox because western medicine gets you about 80% of the way but never over the finish line.Muriel

This is a great video! I suffered from symptoms of IBS for several years following frequent rounds of antibiotics given to me by my doctor for Uti’s or sinus infections. Eventually my IBS progressed to joint pain, muscle cramps, and dietary deficiencies. With the help of functional medicine/naturopathic doctor and my current doctor I have been getting to the root of these symptoms and I am starting to feel better after using probiotics, supplements, and some dietary changes to reduce inflammation. Gut problems can make you feel much older than your chronological age and more sickly. I hope that more doctors begin to use a functional medicine approach and individualize treatments for their patients. No 2 patients are alike and when we say that something is wrong, I hope that more doctors will listen to what we have to say. I had a “gut” instinct that something was wrong with the balance in my gut and I was correct once tested appropriately for this problem.

I have no motility in my ESOPHEGOUS and have chronic gas issues, bloating and constipation. I have been given AMITIZA 24 mg and was lowered to 2 – 8 mg pills a day. I also take Gas-x 2-3 times a day and occasionally a liquid OTC antacid, plus PROTONIX. They only side effect I have is daily headaches from mild to moderate. I contribute these to the AMITIZA because of the start date. This bloating has sent me to th ER because it dominos into me getting short of breath, this then giving me anxiety, to palpitations and high blood pressure because of the anxiety. Please tell me that there is something other than prescription drugs that I might be able to try. I was just put on Coumadin 3 weeks ago, so alot of herbs are not recommended. Your help to a simpler route would be greatly appreciated.

I do all of the things for IBS aleady

FODMAP diet. It works. IBS symptoms virtually gone within a week when I was diagnosed with IBS last year. It’s the sugars in wheat that contribute to IBS. More recently, I am on Day 10 sugar detox and hoping that finally kicking sugar will continue to help even more!

I am replying to this message as a test.

Hello,
I was wondering, is it possible to tell if it is just SIBO or just yeast overgrowth without testing? Do you suggest treating for both with the antibiotic and antifungal at the same time? Also, does the persons diet need to change during this time? I ask because I am currently Paleo and am about to eliminate nuts and nightshades (for autoimmune diseases) , so taking out more foods seems overwhelming! Thank you.

I hear you. I am already underweight and hesitate cutting more foods out of the diet. Nightshades are my next hurtle as I have developed arthritis in my thumb joints. I love potatoes and tomatoes and just hate to keep cutting everything I love out ! Good luck

Hm, I figured all this out by myself. I was hoping you might have further information that would explain why my elimination diet doesn’t always work. I have eliminated casein (Type A1, at least) and all gluten. I’m testing now for tomatoes and peppers and corn to see if they might be contributing to the muscle and joint aching and neuropathy that seems to be caused by gluten sensitivity.

Thanks Mark,
That was an extremely helpful overview of the causes of IBS. I really like your no-nonsense style.

I have a strange symptom, I suffer from acid reflux and don’t want to be on acid blockers, but I have recently noticed when I have heart burn I have a sharp pain in my ear at the same time. When the heartburn subsides, so does the ear ache. Any ideas?

I know this sounds crazy, but at times when my ear hurts or my throat hurts I look to see if my liver or gall bladder are congested.

Somehow for me there is a correlation between the two.

Joyce,
What do you do to check your liver or gall bladder and how do you clean them?

Thank you Dr. Human for this overview. One of your most important points is that “curing” IBS takes a comprehensive approach. I have been trying to work my way out of IBS without Rifaximin for about 18 months….and I’m not there yet. Better…but still not my old normal. And…I have hip pain when sleeping on either hip….which is completely new. Came on suddenly one night….gets better and worse..but never leaves completely. I can walk for miles without limitations…but can’t sleep on a hip. So your mention of joint pain rang a bell.

Wish you weren’t so far away.

Thanks again,
Fargo

Ps. I went to Lenox School…now long gone…just down the street from you.

Wow. I loved that you make me not scared of my body. I am suffering from leaky gut and inflammation and the way my doctor was talking to me, I was scared to death. I hate when doctors do that. Thanks. Can you also talk about how to reduce inflammation so you don’t get gerd, and gastritis …in an easy way that someone can actually follow.

I have a recent diagnosis of collagenous colitis and have had a very alarming flare up in recent months; with awful symptoms. I am now on Budesenide on a tapering dose and am keen to avoid a further flare up when I have weaned myself off cortico- steroids. Might functional medicine have something to offer a specific disease such as mine ?

Thanks that was great on IBS. Now how about colitis treated naturally?

hiatal hernia or

the wonders of caster oil

I would love to hear a House Call on how to get off proton pump inhibitors in stages, since I understand if you stop cold turkey you will experience a rebound effect with stomach acid.

I was diagnosed with IBS by an Internist many years ago, but he didn’t offer me much hope of correcting my problem. Just watch what I eat and reduce any stress in my life.
I started taking 1000 mg of Flax oil every night and that did help with the pain that I
experienced every day.
I started making fermented vegetables and eat a small amount every day. It has cured the pain, and now I only occasionally get cramps followed by frequent bathroom trips.
Thank you for all your information..

Hello!! I know that teflon on pots and pans is dangeous. What do you think of ceramic in pots and pans is it safe to use them.
Thanks i really hope you answer
Becky, san antonio,tx

I have been suffering with I believe IBS for 14 years but I haven’t been able to figure out if it is leaky gut, candida or SIBO. I have gas, bloating, constipation and chronic stomach pain on my lower left side for 14 years! The pain never goes away. I even went so far as having my left ovary removed thinking that may be the cause of the problem but it wasn’t. I have eliminated at great deal from my diet. I take probiotics and digestive enzymes but the pain never goes away. I need help badly.

I have been diagnosed with IBS years ago. The dr’s at first just said I had a chronically inflamed gut after a scope. Years went by until my GYN suggested I get another opinion because I had lost weight from intense pain in my stomach. After a colonoscopy, this new GI dr said I had visceral hypersensitivity along with IBS and suggested going on a FODMAPS diet which is an elimination diet. I have gone gluten free and dairy free which has helped a lot! I know if I eat too much beans or cruciferous veggies I get bothered which is hard for me to cut down on since these are my favorites. I’m not a vegan but definitely eat a plant based diet with little to no processed foods . I’m taking probiotics and eating healthy but I still have some difficulty with pain and constipation.
Would love to not feel my insides when I eat and have to be so careful with what’s on my plate. I can be a real pain to eat with sometimes. If they had stomach, intestine transplants available I’d be first in line.

This is probably one of the best overviews regarding IBS and how there is hope. I have had IBS since I was a teenager. It took over 15 years to get diagnosed. Then another ten years to experience some relief. Everynow and then it does appear again when I have not been eating as I know I need to. One thing that is not mentioned is castrol oil packs. These were extremely helpful for me. This is where you drizzle castrol oil on a cloth, place the cloth on your stomach and apply heat. This gave me profound relief. This is an old fashion remedy. Also, a good probiotic and omega 3 on a regular basis is a gift. For me eliminating dairy was key as well as greatly reducing eggs, wheat, corn and soy has made a huge improvement. I can have wheat and eggs occasionally. For those who have not found relief keep seeking help, eat as clean as possible and keep doing your research and find out what works for you. Truly there is hope. Also…greens are your friend, Kris Carr has great information on her site. Her book the “Crazy Sexy Diet” offers more insights. At times going vegan may offer relief. Smoothies and juicing are your friends. Remember this is hope,

Love “House Call,” what a great way to share information for those of us who are naturally more visual by nature. The video on IBS and leaky gut was so informative, I’m certain it will help both me and my husband exponentially. I think he has IBS and I suspect I’m more of a leaky gut kind of gal. What I’m certain of is that both of us have digestive imbalances and now we have some simple tools to hopefully get back on track.

Keep’em coming, this is an awesome educational tool.

Wow! This was an extraordinary explanation. I have been working on this issue for years and Dr. Hyman articulated all the elements so cleanly. It made me feel both educated and hopeful at the same time.

My IBS cleared up when I stopped eating wheat. I didn’t loose weight like other people talk about but I have some sleep apnea issues I am working on. But the stools that looked like foamy yellow hair mousse (I know, WAY too much information) just don’t happen anymore and I don’t have to run to have a bowel movement half an hour after I eat. Who knew that wasn’t normal! Plus I had some skin issues clear up. Real nice. I’ll take it!

I am 73 years old. For the past 20 years I’ve been taking prescription medicine for GERD. I was treated for had H-Pylori but I still have very bad stomach problems and my digestion in worse then ever. I had an upper GI and no cancer or ulcers showed up, just Hiatal hernia and irritation. My gastroenterologist put me back on Zantacs 300mg twice daily. It doesn’t work anymore, I still have problems. Prevacid use to work so I went back into it but it is not working anymore either. Any suggestions?
Thanks.
I also have IBS and think that I am not digesting what I eat anymore.

Oh yeah, carrageenan causes me intense and lasting bowel discomfort. Takes about 3 days for it to show up and it lasts about 24 hours or so. Was hard to figure out that cause. Feels like alot of pressure, swelling and inflammation inside and made me sensitive to other things that I can eat now that I quit eating that, like ginger and basil.

My Dr gave me an antispasmodic for IBS which did not work . Mine is triggered by stress, fried food and mostly, coffee. I’ve had some success with edible clay on a daily basis, and DMSO for stomach pain. One or two droppers in water help a lot with the pain.

Hello. My name is Mary from New Zealand.
I have read a lot of your material and tied the 7 day detox. it is an exceptional program.

I still do the smoothies and eat reasonably well with the occasional moment of indulgence.

I am at the menopause stage and have gained weight around the abdominal area.
I work full time in the community health area.
I find that I am tired a lot. I don’t have H R T treatments. is there an alternative that you can recommend.

I am intending to do the ultra diet program shortly.
when I was on it last I felt lousy for the first four day and slept a lot
I know its more about making it a lifestyle.

Thank You Again
Mary Aust

I wish I had received this much information from my gastroenterologist ! Her advice for my IBS (predominately constipation) was to take Miralax, which wasn’t really helpful. I’m wondering where to go from here.

I too have had IBS after six rounds of antibiotics for a sinus infection that eventually turned into a fungal infection. I had to change my diet and eliminate corn, wheat, sugar, eggs, milk, sugar, soy. I used a silver spray that keeps me clear.

The IBS i keep under control with VSL(probiotics), fiber, fermented vegetables, and trying to stay on the above diet.

I try to follow the GAPS diet and do a bone broth when I need to …. it helps me.

You have hit the nail on the head all in one shot. I appreciate everything you always say…just trying to get my local PCP to follow through…not easy! Insurance won’t pay for the Xifaxin and MD won’t put me on more than 1 round of Nystatin…what to do next? Distending up to 4″ after eating, off balance hormones, depression…all Sx you report …tough being an early retired nurse due to all these complications and conventional medicine won’t listen.

My relationship with you began when I took the coaching course with IIN two years ago. Due to circumstances that hindered my progress as regards healing my body I have not put into practice many of the things I learned. I am unwell in many areas of my body and I am sure some if not all of my symptoms are connected to my unhealthy gut! So I was delighted to hear you tell me what to do because I am finally in the proper state of mind to begin to deal with it. I am living in the mountains in Mexico where not everything in available but I can have what I need brought to me from time to time. I am going to follow up with the information you gave me on your website and see if I can fix myself! I am looking forward to next week and many thanks for the way your care…..

I had been regular all my life. 6 years ago I had a colonoscopy and I have never been regular since. I have always felt something went wrong with the colonoscopy. The doctor prescribed fiber. That blocked me up even worse. I drink lots of water but it doesn’t help.

After many appointments to GP’s and Gastroenterologists I decided to change the what I put into my body and minimise stress.
I don’t eat any bleached food products like sugar, pasta, flower etc. I eat minimal dairy and make sure it is either A2 or lactose free. Have greatly reduced products that cause acidity such as sugars etc.

My diet consists mostly of organic fresh food. I avoid preservatives and food additives most of the time. I take chlorophyll daily and this has been extremely beneficial, as it helps reduce any acidic build up in your body I find it cures reflux almost immediately and bloating overtime if it is taken on a daily basis. I also drink a lot of water and add essential oils to my water that are organic and cold pressed ( Don’t ever add essential oil if they are not cold pressed). I use oil that can be taken internally such as lemon, peppermint and a blend called slim and sassy by Doterra. I rarely get sick and I used to be unwell all the time, getting all the symptoms you mentioned.
Unfortunate that conventional medicine most of the time doesn’t look at the cause of the problem and instead treating the symptoms mostly with prescription drugs, they should be treating the root cause of the problem and check for any vitamin deficiencies and get gut flora tested. To me this is a common sense solution and it’s baffling that it isn’t being done. I think what we put into our bodies is the cause of a lot of illness and should prescriptions should be handed out instead of drug prescriptions first. Your bodies environment should be alkaline and acidic environment will lead to loads of health problems.

Hi Dr. Hyman,
After much testing and elimination of possible causes, I have been told I have post infectious IBS. My GI doctor has taken me off all medications to rest my gut, ordered CAT scans and MRIs to check for problems and has come up with nothing. I tried the JJ Virgin 3 week elimination diet but nothing stood out as the problem food. My doctor seems leery of the food sensitivity testing that you recommend. Can you tell me more about that? How do I find a doctor or lab that does that extensive testing.
My symptons remain gas and bloating in the morning with several trips to the bathroom to empty my bowels. There is some discomfort and sometimes cramping. This all seems to work its way out of my system by noon and then I feel normal for the rest of the day. Should I start over with a new GI doctor, go back to mine and insist on the food sensitivity testing or find a lab that does this testing on my own. Please advise and thanks for your very helpful videos!

Dear Dr. Hyman,
Thank you so much for this great overview about IBS. I have been dealing with so bad symptoms the last 4 years like IBS, vertigo, migraines, fibromyalgia, and intoxicated with heavy metals. Your book helped me to diagnose and treat myself.
I would like you to tell me what to be doing with h.pylori in order to cure it. After testing myself I could figure out that I have so many bad bugs. It’s being hard to naturally treat them but, I am trying with paraguard, mastic gum and kyolic garlic.
Is it right?
Best wishes, Elianni

This morning I decided to click on the link to this video and I must tell you that I am pleased. This video provided wonderful information (no useless gimmicks) with important facts put forth in jargon that almost every layperson (like myself) can understand. And, if we needed/wanted more information, you told us where to find it, all for free.

You see, previously, it seemed that you came out of no where, jumping on the band wagon with alternative medicine/new age philosophy. I was skeptical, not of your medicine practices (your medicine is founded in true science and just makes sense!) but of your promotional qualities. I was sure that your spin was a “selling” one and I backed away from your emails.

The foundation of our little group is about how much we actually “give away for free.” We do this, not for lack of self-esteem, believing that we don’t deserve financial gain, but because we think that the information is so important that we want everyone to have it. In the end, people trust us and it is there where/when we make money.

You just did this with your video, your website, your blogs. You have gained my respect/support and I just purchased one of your books-can’t wait to start reading it. Thank you.

Eating vegan, living honestly, getting good sleep, exercising and meditating will make it go away.

I was vegan for a year and my IBS did not go away.

Do you think GMO’s have anything to do with irritable bowel syndrome? I have had digestive problems all my life then I moved to Mexico and do not have the problems I have when I eat in the states. I am starting to think it is GMO ‘s because I can’t find a specific food I am sensitive to..

My daughter-in-law was diagnoised years ago with Crohn’s Disease. I know it is different then IBS, but do have similar suggestions for treatment?

My niece’s (age 40)intestine was perforated during a “minor” surgery.Result:chronic constipation-how do we avoid colostomy? Thank you.

Hi Dr.Hyman,
Thank you very much for your House Call regarding IBS. I have read your books, Video etc. The struggle that I am facing to find a Doctors who are practicing the functional moralities that you talk about.
My question is do you have network of doctors that we can access for their service? Doctors that well verse to diagnose, test and prescribe according to your protocol.
Regards,
Max

I am having some difficulty with what I believe is IBS. I live in Northern Virginia, near Washington DC. Do you know where I could go to get help.

I have IBS – however, I have no symthoms that are mentioned whenever IBS is mentioned. “Stress” will cause an “explosion.” Sometime I feel there is no reason for the explosion. I take probiotics, Metamusil, fish oil, etc. that you mention – my diet is healthy and I have no known alergies. My doctor has me on Lotronex – small dose, but I seem to have a flare-up about once a month.

Your listeners are not stupid. To call intestinal bacteria “bugs” as though we have insects inside us is not cute, it’s an insult to people’s intelligence.

I’m not insulted.

Question; Do you know of an available certified B12-supplement that will not be neutralized by the stomach-HCL ?
Thanks very much,
ss

History of Candida, treatment successful. Is it safe to eat fermented foods?

I have gas, explosive diarrhea, nausea continuous for hours after I take oral diabetic medicine. Have been on low carb, no-grain, no dairy diet for years; do plenty of exercise. The problem goes away if I take no diabetic drugs from the previous evening on. This happens not only with metformin, but also with drugs like Onglyza which do not have this reported effect. My Dr. cannot find one that doesn’t do this for me, and my sugar is 300 or more all of the time. Is this an autoimmune digestive problem, IBS, or something else? Been diabetic for 14 years, and until 2 years ago diet controlled it. We tried to go with 2 drugs in August because metformin 500 mg x3 didn’t control it anymore. I can’t take the symptoms of IBS and high sugar any more. Help!

Excellent information.Thank you.I’ll be watching House Call regularly.

My IBS seems to act up worse if I have coffee. It’s not the caffeine because I can drink tea and soda with no symptoms. Any ideas why coffee would be a trigger?

I first want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your dedication to TRUE healing. I attended IIN and fell in love with your lecture and with functional medicine. It is truly the way of the future and is helping restore my view of western medicine. It has also helped me shape my coaching practice as your emphasis on healing the gut and detoxification seem to heal the most amount of ailments. 🙂

My question is this, what are your best suggestions for improving symptoms associated with autoimmune disorders? I have been diagnosed with an autoimmune and I vigorously detox, eat a clean diet, supplement and now I am looking into food allergy testing, but I can’t seem to shake the fatigue and all over body pain associated with it. I was hoping maybe you have a gem of secret that I have been missing as I feel as though I am trying a lot! Thank you in advance and I will continue to share with everyone around me all of your life saving books and media outlets. Blessings to you!

I have been gluten and dairy free for the past four years, eat almost 100% non processed foods (organic vegetables, smoothies, etc) and resistant exercise regularly, but despite that have suffered from SIBO (my own diagnosis) for years. Had stool testing done two years in a row and discovered parasites the first year and h-pylori bacteria the second. Both times I was treated by HealthNow clinic in Sunnyvale, California with the proper anti-biotics and found that while on them (approximately a month each time) for the first time in my life I had a normal gut – one or two BM per day rather than 5 or 6, and no urgency. Normal stools rather than loose to the point of almost diarrhea, and NO gas bloating. Within a month after being off the treatment the conditions returned. We were in Mexico on an extended retirement vacation so I went to the local gastroenterologist and had a test done where she ran a tube down my throat and into my intestines with a camera attached (can’t remember the name of the procedure) to see if the H-Pylori was present. It wasn’t, but my condition was still not right, so she put me on the the most common anti-biotic treatment for SIBO (also can’t remember the name, but believe it was the one referenced in your video). Minor improvement (no gas bloating, but still had loose stools) while taking it for the approximate two weeks, then the conditions returned within a day or two after the treatment.

Then I was at a restaurant with some friends and one of them ordered Jamaican tea. I asked what that was (hibiscus leaves), and was told that it was supposed to kill bacteria in your gut, but that you had to be careful if you drank too much of it daily because it could deplete the good as well as the bad bacteria.

Well I didn’t care about overdosing at that point, just wanted some relief, so I had a Jamaican tea and the next day went to the local market and bought a good supply of the leaves. For the next three months I drank approximately 18 ounces per day, 6 ounces before each meal. I even stopped taking Probiotics to give the Jamaican tea a better chance of attacking the bacteria in my small intestine. Gradually over the next three months my gas bloating disappeared, and extremely loose stool condition improved, plus BM’s decreased to one per day, with no urgency.

After 3 months I decided to try getting along without the Jamaican tea. Unfortunately a month or so after that I had some chicken for dinner that smelled a little bit spoiled, which I shouldn’t have eaten. Within days, my gas bloating and looser stools returned, so I have since been on a relaxed regimen of two to three glasses of Jamaican tea daily again, along with some enzmnes, before meals, and my condition is once again more tolerable – with less gas bloating and stools that are closer to being normal (still too loose however).

I have had trouble finding probiotics that I could have shipped to Mexico and that also didn’t have any dairy content, so haven’t been taking Probiotics.

Next month I will be going back to the States for a few weeks, and will order some non dairy Probiotics that have to be refrigerated, and that I can take back with me to Mexico (we live on our retirement sailboat, currently down in Mexico).

If you have any comments on the Jamaican tea remedy I would be interested. Also if you have any further suggestions, I am more than receptive.
Jon

Jon, this is fascinating. I have a similar situation but the opposite issue-constipation. The tea sounds powerful. I hope you find resolution!
Caren

Very interesting and useful, Thank you. Will be tuning in more.

I enjoyed this house call. I had IBS for about 20 years. I read the book “Wheat Belly” a short time ago and eliminated wheat in an attempt to reduce my LDL count. My blood test just came back with excellent results. The interesting part was when I stopped the wheat, my IBS was gone in about a week. I have been IBS free for over 3 months now. I enjoy your books, DVDs, and I’m a big fan of functional medicine. I believe like you that we should treat the root cause of the problem, not the symptoms. Thank you!

What you say is right on target; stress can irritate the bowel, too. How does one deal with this issue? I never get headaches, but I can tell that stress goes right to my guts.

Very informative great video. Like Maurice I am curious what to do about the stress trigger although I do get headaches as well.

I am very surprised that you did not mention the powerful benefits of FMT, Fecal Microbiota Transplants as a treatment for gut problems. This is a drug-free method of restoring the body’s gut flora by installing a stool transplant from healthy donor into the affected person’s colon to repopulate the gut with the full spectrum of good bacteria. There are many reports available online about this treatment that shows it is gaining popularity as a safe, effective and affordable treatment.

Thank you for all your informative articles! Regarding IBS, I am very nervous about taking an antibiotic or antifungal in order to clear out the bad bacteria or yeast. Have you been able to follow up with patients over the years (long-term) and have they all remained IBS free after using these meds?

Dr. Hyman, This article has the answers I’ve been looking for! Sorry this will be long but probably an interesting read…………………..
I’m a 45 year old, active female. I’ve suffered form IBS my whole life. Suffering from mostly constipation. I remember being told as a child that I had that problem because as a 5 yr old traveling from the states to Guam that I wouldn’t use the potty on the airplanes for fear of falling through-then my parents gave me caster oil for years….I grew up on an SAD diet but as a young adult realized that I had a sensitive system and I cleaned up my eating dramatically out of necessity. At 32 I studied macrobiotics and made a full transition to whole foods and have never looked back. I’ll shorten this history up or It will be way too long-I ended up needing antibiotics for numerous rounds while breastfeeding my first child (I was 32 years). I was a non red meat eater but not vegan at that point and leaned after lots of post birth complications that I had pernicious anemia. I increased my meat intake and took methylated B12 and went on to have a healthy 2nd pregnancy 7 years later. I became gluten intolerant after my 2nd child and when she was 3 ( although I never had as much as a cold) got pneumonia 2x in 6 months. I took antibiotics for each occurrences of the pneumonia. The 2nd round made me very ill as I had a bad reaction to it. It took me 6 months of acupuncture, Chinese herbs, and an total elimination diet to be able to eat with out stomach pain again. Ever since then I have been totally and completely constipated and have not had a normal formed bowel movement in 1 1/2 years. I am now seeing a Nurse Practitioner who specializes in functional medicine and oncology. She has your books for sale at her office so I know she follows your work!
She recommended a stool test and blood work. My results took my breath away!
e-coli, a parasite, yeast, little to no good bacteria, low DHEA, inability to digest protein or fat and a single strand of Lyme disease & and a mutation of a gene that makes it hard for me to methylate. Just prior to this testing I had completed (on top of my squeaky clean eating) a 3o day clean meat and veggie program. I take probiotics, eat tons of raw fermented food, drink kombucha, take a high quality high potency fish oil.I have a Vitamix and juice, I take enzymes, turmeric, even take oregano oil when I feel the sniffles coming on. I eat ZERO sugar-not even maple syrup or honey, no dairy, zero grains (remember I’m also gluten free). I hydrate and work out vigorously 3-4 times a week in addition to paddling and being very active with my kids. I am a picture of health to my friends and family and am an endless resource for them regarding nutrition! Yet I can’t have a normal bowel movement and now I have these results that say I’m a mess! It’s ridiculous. I started on a protocol prescribed by the nurse that includes a total elimination diet ( really I gave up eggs and bananas as I was already so clean) still take all my supplements and take the GI supplement you recommend. She wants me to take Nystatin but I don’t want to feel sick, so I have not started it yet. I signed up for a 5 K ( I’m active in everything but running) before my test results. Since starting this protocol 10 days ago I’m nauseous and so exhausted.
I have 3 questions for you after telling you my story-
1. what do you recommend for my parasite? she really has not offered me any treatment for that. My test form Genova Diag. reads “parasite positive; taxonomy unavailable”
2. My Yeast/Fungi is Saccharomyces sp. What is that? I can’t find a single description on the internet except it’s not yeast but a fungus that the candida fermented and turned to yeast. That is why I’m cautious about taking the Nystatin. Should I take the Nystatin for this?
3. If I’m grain/carb free on my elimination/yeast free diet what can I eat for energy for my work outs? I try to train for my 5K and I’m exhausted and bonk in the middle of the run and end up walking.
I know you have so many messages to read and so many people that need help but I would deeply appreciate a reply from you. I’m in Southern Maine and have often thought of making an apt with you & taking the drive South-I might be headed in that direction! thanks for your time! Caren

I really think the piece that is missing here is that you still have a systemic, fungal yeast infection. I would do the McCombs plan for irradicating fungal yeast. It has transformed many people’s lives from what I have read. He does NOT rotate antifungals, and he does not treat with Nystatin (although I love Hymans presentation here on IBS, I am very disappointed he recommends antifungals as you can develop resistant strains of yeast that way. Undecenoic acid (SF722 by Thorne Research, and McCombs formula also) break down the wall of the fungal yeast and revert it back to its normal state so your immune system can manage, control the yeast and it will no longer be systemic. Yeast is such a huge contrubutor to low stomach acid and constipation and your history tells me you still have it systemically. Good luck. Check out the plan. Also watch the Science Behind Candida on youtube or his website. He is a great resource.

The video was very helpful. I asked my doctor for an RX for Xifaxan, but it was denied by my insurance company in the 250mg dosage she prescribed. There is a coupon for the 550mg dosage instead if I pay out of pocket. Will that dosage be too high for IBS symptoms? I don’t want to cut the pill in half because it will break the protective coating.

Just a note to confirm every thing you said re healing IBS as I started with these steps some 5 months ago and my IBS is history. I started off with a detox – every pathogen plus heavy metals, then putting the flora back and lastly healing my leaky gut. I do not touch sugars, starchy vegetables, gluten containing foods, dairy or soy. I make everything I eat since processed foods contain a lot of hidden sugars, etc.

I have bouts of excessive flatulence. Beef cheese salmon beans, of course. Sometimes beano helps, sometimes simethicone helps, charcoal caps work but they block absorbtion of supplements. I also take digestive enzymes twice daily. Suggestions?

I just do not understand why my apparent case of Leaky Gut has been so difficult to transition out of… My Functional Doctor Koren Barrett and I used your book The Ultra Mind Solution as our guide, I picked it up in 2009 and when my doctor at the time was not prepared to work with these tests, I found Dr. Barrett in 2010. She was very familiar with your work, and we have literally done every “meaningful” test Genova amnd MetaMetrix offer… We have done so many therapies, with Glutamine and all the rest, Probiotics, we did an Organic Acids test 6 months ago that came out perfect, yet no real progress with the myriad of symptoms, most of them neurological and troubling… We just did the Lactulose/Mannitol test and it showed Leaky Gut… This is what she felt was happening in 2009 and this is what Alternative doctor Frank Rite diagnosed in 1997, after the original MD diagnosis was IBS in 1993… Then, a Spastic Colon that brought me to tears ultimately was the diagnosis for the Gut Pain I has been experiencing… Right after a Non Rash Itch that semed to be happening all over my body and also became unbearable… Once the Spastic Colon started, the Itch disappeared… None of the diet/drug/or supplement therapies back then were productive and I ultimately turned to an Osteopath who told me to get familiar with myself and look at Buddhist ideas of acceptance and eliminate resistance… Comparable to your discussion of stress relief in your book… And by golly, this is what worked at the end of the day… The Spastic Colon calmed down to a 1 and I could see what triggered it, and tried to adjust my life accordingly… I then had 10-11 years of 90% health even though I was still not “completely right”… And then in 2009 a whole variety of physical sensations which were tame in the 90’s came back in a manner which became debilitating like the Spastic Colon… I was 37 in 1997 and 49 in 2009… The diagnosis was Adrenal fatigue by the Integrative physician and her therapy was counterproductive… Cortef, Armour Thyroid, DHEA, and Bioidentical Testosterone just did not work, things got worse… This is when I found you and Dr. Barrett… Symptoms of numbness/tingling/weakness in the legs, some of this in the fingertips, dizziness, nausea, exhaustion, skin pigment challenges, twitches, very cold feet/ankles/fingers, cough deep in the lungs are among the challenges present… Just full body discomfort… It makes no sense, I am not overweight and was always the fittest guy I knew until all this started… life has been difficult with this, it is hard to plan anything… Barrett tested for Parsites, they were found, we treated successfully with no chamge in symptoms… Tests for Testosterone have been low since the mid 90’s, every time that is treated, levels increase fine but no noticeable improvement in how I feel or symptoms… Current treatment for 6 months has been Integrative Therapeutics Similase GFCF, Fiber Formula, Permeability Factors, and Oxyperm… Also HLC High Potency Probiotics… I also did 16 IV treatments during this time… And went Grain Free for 4 months… This therapy/approach has not produced improvement… So 2 months ago I went back to occasionally having bread, burritos, a little wine because I wanted to enjoy the company of friends and it is so stressful to avoid these foods all the time… I ABSOLUTELY could if I could find a way to feel well… I was thinking about flying out to Lenox and paying the 5-10 grand in 2010 because I really think you are the doctor that makes the most sense about health, I am very impressed, and you healed yourself from a significant health challenge… But Dr. Barrett reassued me that she is very familiar with your approach, and she is a very esteemed Functional doctor in Southern Cal… Last year the Heavy Metal challenge test did show Mercury and I was able to do one round of the chelation but then I had some obligations that were important to tend to and the holidays came… So she did the rest of the tests she wanted to do, Including the MetaMetrix Toxic Core, the Elemental Analysis/RBC Elements Doctors Data, and all these will be in in the next week or so… And then I decide my next move… I did receive a brief consultation from Maggie in 2010, I thank you for that… Obviously, it is hard for that to produce anything given the nature of the situation… But I appreciated it… And Ultra Mind Solution seems so clear, great book… I just do not understand why mu gut has not healed… My occupation is a stressful one, and 2009-present have indeed been animated… But I have had to cut back on work because I just was not able… I decided to pay others more $$$ so as to not lose what I had built… I have never completely eliminated ALL of the food allergens at one time, I’m thinking this will be my next move… If anything I am underweight, so this is a little scary… I may do the GAPS diet, Natasha McBride… Even thinking of going raw, including raw protien approach, which I have heard can really heal… Raw egg yolks easy on the mind, but raw Salmon, Chicken, etc… Also finding a way to take some real time off and do Meditation, EFT, and Infrared Suanas. I go to Bikram Yoga twice a week, I love it, but it is difficult and need to rest a lot with the neuropathy like symptoms and dizziness… I love it because my extremities are very cold frequently and I like heat… I heard something the other day that intrigued me, author Lizza Rankin said that until your parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems get into balance, the body will not heal… Makes so much sense, I just have not been able to get there perhaps… And how does this relate to Leaky Gut? And I heard another webinar where Alex Loyd, the author of the Healing Codes, which I have not read, indicated that a Harvard scientist Dan Gilbert said that if one is “looking at an external expectation to achieve results”, they will not heal because the body is in a “chronic state of stress”… i.e, leaky gut remains… Perhaps you can comment on this… I’m not sure what my next move will be… It will include a rebounder, Yoga, meditation, EFT( I bought Ortner’s book), probably trying GAPS approach while taking time off, swimming in the ocean, 30 minutes of sun before 10 or after 4, breathing, no processed food while I am staying away form allergens, and more…. I have been consuming green juices for 15 years, now making them myself with smoothies in my Blendtec blender… I may have made an error years ago by trying fasts, and staying away from protien for awhile… I lost 30 pounds quickly doing the VE Irons cleanse 3 years ago becuase I was frustrated with the limited results I was getting… That was not good, fortunately I stopped, and am now back to 160 lbs, a good weight.. So I am absorbing food in some way… I am aware that I may be getting in my own way with all of my intent to “figure this out”, and I am ready to move into a new place… Put my plan on place and get away from the books, magazines… Take a break from this “stress” and try to relax into “something”… Something tells me you were like I have been though… I have always been a go getter and this health challenge has just stopped me in my tracks… At any rate, I will be getting off that hamster wheel in some way… Maybe Robert Cassar is right, the only way to get rid of leaky gut is to change the terrain so the bad guys will just go away, and balance can be restored… he seems to believe people will lose the battle if these bad guys are challenged with drugs/supplements, you win by not giving them any reason to stay… You are a great doctor, I hope America can make a grand transition into “healing” soon… Quite frankly, I’m wondering why I am paying $450/month in health insurance… All my MRI’s and colonoscopy’s have been fine, and I know how I am going to live the rest of my life… Taking care of myself, eating the best food money can buy or make myself… I am not interested in conventional therapies… I have not taken an actual pharmaceutical drug in 16 years… I have no plans to ev
er again… Natural herbs yes… Maybe I should consider an antifungal… Just not sure… And in addition to the Functionals, all the great natural healers , the Richard Schulze’s, should not have to worry about being “silenced” for simply giving people information and choices… I want all these wonderful people to be “released”, and let’s tell the American people to educate themselves in making decisions on their health… Talk to a variety of healers if this is their choice… Any response to any of these comments will obviously be much appreciated… Thank you.

I had said this already in the posts here, but I think you still have systemic fungal yeast infections, if you have never taken undecenoic acid to knock out the fungal form. Check out McCombs plan and watch The Science of Candida. his plan would be a critical adjuct to whatever you are doing and would help heal your leaking gut. I too have been looking into this stuff non stop for a year and I am really impressed with this guy as far as yeast goes. No I get no kickbacks. LOL.

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