Irritable Bowel Syndrome
The causes of IBS are still being investigated. However, even now we know that diet is important but in exactly what way, we still do not know. Psychological factors are also known to effect symptoms. What is now certain is that IBS patients have dysbiosis of the colon bacteria. This term means that the types of bacteria within the gut have changed to groups that are simply unfriendly and bad. They are the types that can cause inflammation of the gut wall with leakage of bacterial breakdown products through the wall and into the blood. Additionally, these bad colon bacteria can produce unwanted chemicals or toxins that can slip through the weakened wall of the colon. The following article speaks to these factors.
The main problem with any fiber in IBS patients is whether they cause bloating, gas and excess flatus. Almost all fibers can do this to a certain degree. Wheat bran is mostly insoluble fiber and has the least gas problems. For the average IBS patient, a simple testing method seems to work best. Using a product such as Prebiotin, take just 1/2 scoop once a day in the am for at least a week, maybe longer. Then add a 2nd 1/2 scoop in the mid afternoon. If you are doing well, stay on this does for at least a month. Thereafter, the dose can be increased gradually to tolerance.
The following is a balanced look at prebiotics in IBS patients. What is certain is that diet and prebiotics can not induce any permanent problems. If too many symptoms occur, the simply back off until they clear.