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  • Heather Woodruff

Your First Steps After an IBS Diagnosis

There you are sitting in the doctor’s office (again) waiting to hear the results of the stool test, blood work, colonoscopy, ultrasound or any of the other tests that may have been done. And instead of getting clarity as to what the heck is going on with your painfully gassy bloated belly you’re told, ‘well, everything appears to be normal so it must be IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)’.

Why does this feel like a cop out? Because there is no actual ‘official’ medical test for diagnosing IBS, so Medical Doctor’s will do so via symptoms or process of elimination. IBS presents in so many ways for each person (there is not a clear cookie cutter symptom profile); you may have bloating and diarrhea while someone else may have pain and constipation.

You are more than likely going to hear next that IBS is incurable and it’s simply something you will need to learn to ‘manage’. I’m not telling you that your Doctor is wrong as this is the current conventional medical approach to IBS and they are doing the best with the information and knowledge they have at this time. But I will tell you that the average doctor gets maybe 45 min of nutrition schooling during their 7+ years of medical training.

So I am going to walk you through the 3 first steps every person with an IBS diagnosis should take that your Doctor probably didn’t tell you about...

Breathe and Get Support

The ‘what the heck do I do know?! Can push you into a dark lonely place with your IBS diagnosis. You may not feel comfortable telling anyone about your poop issues that are literally consuming your life. Finding a support group like the Natural IBS Support Facebook Group can be a great way to learn from those who have found a better way plus get daily tips and recipes for repairing IBS from a Certified Nutritional Practitioner & Digestion Guru (ps: that's me!).

Start a Food Journal

Even if you’ve already tried this, do it again (for at least 7 days) and make sure to write down everything! Exactly what you ate and how you felt. When you do notice your abdominal cramping, excess gas, bloating or other IBS symptom flare up, look back at the last 3 days. Food sensitivities can take anywhere from 30 min to 3 days afterwards.

Guess what... Your chronically inflamed tummy did not happen ‘just because’ and there is a way that we can dig deep together and get to the root of your IBS. First things first: Let’s calm that belly down! It’s difficult to have the energy and motivation you need to heal from IBS when you are constantly running to the bathroom. This 3 Day Meal Plan is full of easy to digest goodness to calm your digestive inflammation and to noticeably decrease gas and bloating within 24 hours.

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