IBS and Constipation
I have IBS-M. I have said before, if a gun were held to my head, I would choose the ‘D’ part of this whole thing without a moments thought. We have talked at length about the absolutely horrible symptoms of IBS-D and its effects on our lives. I’d like to talk about the ‘C’ aspect today in that I have been struggling more with this type more and more often these days and it has its own particular pains and challenges. Trouble is, it is just as difficult to get a grip on IBC-C as any other type of IBS, and once again, I truly believe we all have to find our own path to wellness and comfortable ( or relatively) existence.
The longer you are constipated it hurts. Based on commercials and society's take on constipation, everyone seems to think its very easy to get rid of it and get everything flowing nice and healthy again. If you suffer with IBS-C or IBS-M, you know this might not be the case. You might be taking extra fiber, drinking tons of water, laxatives, and the medicine your doctor gave you and still...nothing. I’ve been there. It will get better for a few days and then back to...uh...nothing. Literally, nothing is happening, if you know what I mean. Not to say that the wellness tools I just mentioned are not important in fighting constipation, they are of course, but when taking on a challenge like this, I have always found a more holistic approach usually works best.
Think outside the box. I will preface the statements to come with a caveat. I don’t do things by the book generally. I trust what my body is telling me and then I try things. I very often crash and burn. Trial and error, baby. I began by doing all of the things listed above, fiber, water, medication, laxatives (jesus). Then...I started drinking an itsy, bitty part of coffee (4-6oz) in the morning. Then I attempted to add an aspect of the keto diet into my FODMAP/GFCF diet just to see what would happen. That didn’t work out that well for me, but who knows :-)
What has helped my constipation
What did end up helping was swimming and yoga. Something about the muscles and movement of the body through the water seemed to work very well. I felt more fluid (pun intended) and my digestive system started kicking into gear again. The more I did it, the better I felt, but still I felt as though just one more addition to my wellness routine might do the trick. YOGA. Without going into a lesson on the various types of yoga, poses, philosophy and such, the effect that yoga stretching, isometric exercise and the meditation factor also seemed to help in a big way. This is my experience with IBS-C. Your activities, diet and approach may differ completely, but don’t assume because you have ‘done all you can,’ that there is nothing else you can do to earn yourself some relief.
Do you have a good understanding of what triggers your flares?