Growing up in the UK, it’s ingrained for both men and women: No Complaining Allowed (or as we say here, no “whingeing.”) Whatever the circumstances, we’re taught to just “get on with it.” But for someone with IBS, this societal expectation is cruel and almost impossible. Indeed, how do you “get on with it” if you’re bound to the toilet?
If you’re missing days off work due to symptoms, or you’re afraid to commit to plans because you don’t know how you’ll be feeling, pretending everything is fine won’t make the problem go away. Of course, it’s not always easy to ask for help, especially if you’ve been disappointed in the past. When your body doesn’t respond to conventional wisdom, most medical practitioners give up on you.
Many IBS sufferers eventually come to believe that it’s their own fault they aren’t getting better. This is usually due to 3 reasons:
- They’ve been told IBS is all in their heads.
- Treatments that are reputed to work for others don’t work for them.
- They notice the correlation between stress and IBS flares, and blame themselves for being stressed.
It’s true that stress plays a role in IBS, but it’s not stress alone that contributes to symptoms. And even if it was, you still would not be to blame. This is a stressful world, and everyone handles stress differently. Some people experience chronic back pain. Others struggle with depression or anxiety.
If you have IBS, then something is irritating you, and it’s not just stress. Most likely, it’s something you eat fairly often, and I’m not talking about the usual suspects like gluten or dairy. I’m talking about certain vegetables… yes, that’s right — the food group with the best reputation!
Vegetables might seem like the healthiest food group in the world, but some of them ferment and create copious amounts of gas in your intestines each time you consume them. Eat enough of these vegetables (along with other fermentable grains), and you’re bound to experience flares every few days, or even every day.
But if you’ve been taught that being strong means simply putting up with symptoms and not seeking help, it’s time to put that old conditioning behind you. Even though IBS has no cure (yet), there is no good reason to live with IBS. And if you’ve already sought help and that help failed you, my advice is to try again.
Try again. Never give up. With the right nutritional advice and the right mindset hacks to help you handle stress, you can become unstoppable.
We see it every week with our clients. Not only do we give them custom tailored dietary recommendations, they also benefit from our experience in the army where we learned how soldiers needed to care for themselves to function in stressful situations. And believe it or not, a soldier’s training is not about hiding illnesses or pretending to be strong. A soldier’s training involves rigorous self-care backed by the science of nutrition.
If you are ready to get the help that truly understands what you’re going through, schedule a free consultation with me and my team. We’ll listen carefully to your symptoms, and let you know what the path to feeling better can look like.
Oh, and we’ll never tell you to “get on with it.”
Before you book a call with us, please make sure that you have been given an official IBS diagnosis by a medical doctor.