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My IBS Flares Disappeared Thanks to Starvation

I have inadvertently discovered the remedy to all of my IBS problems. It works like a charm. Unfortunately, it is not sustainable. Why? Because this miraculous remedy is starvation.

Thanks to other unrelated issues, I am one week into a mostly liquid diet. I will probably have another week or so before reintroducing much solid food. While I am absolutely starving, I have no IBS-related pain. The bloating is gone. The cramping is gone. That weird chest pain I had developed is gone.

Enjoying flare-free days while they last

As blissful as it is to have a vacation from symptoms, this, of course, cannot continue for any real length of time. It is a temporary state. I have said this many times over the years. The only cure to IBS is to starve yourself, and that is a case where the cure is most definitely worse than the disorder. Therefore, there is no real cure.

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At this time, I have absolutely no digestive issues at all. This is because there is very little in my digestive system. It is clean. There are no offensive foods causing trouble. The limited diet I am currently on keeps me from ingesting the things that cause me grief. I am starving, but I have no IBS-related issues.

The risks of restrictive diets

We are often told we can use restrictive diets to control our symptoms, but why is that a serious suggestion? In many cases, we are told the key to getting symptoms under control is to purposely starve ourselves. Some of the restrictive diets I have been suggested would surely lead to issues with malnutrition. How is that helpful?

In order to maintain the ideal diet suggested to help keep symptoms in check, we risk malnutrition, vitamin deficiencies, and other diet-related illnesses. Not only are we asked to go hungry, but we are asked to risk other health issues by going hungry in an effort to control IBS symptoms.

Restrictive diets are not the answer for me

Much of the prescribed treatments for IBS involve diet restrictions, but how realistic is this approach? While many of us have very few safe foods and those foods seem to change over time, trying to keep a diet of only foods that will not agitate IBS is nearly impossible. Starving aside, the effects of malnutrition from such an unbalanced diet would be disastrous.

The solution to IBS is not only impractical. It’s impossible. If we eliminate every food that agitates our digestive system, what does that leave? For many, not enough to keep from slowly starving to death because our bodies will not get what they need. Of course, we can and often do eliminate the worst offenders from our diet. Still, we have symptoms. It is not a solution. It is a bandage over a gaping wound.

Why must food be our enemy?

As my time on this diet dwindles, I am stuck wondering why the very thing that sustains us must cause us such misery. Of course, it makes no difference why it is this way. It is, and that is all that matters. We must eat to live, but eating causes us pain. This cycle of pain continues for a lifetime, and we have no choice but to endure it.

Have you ever been on a restricted diet? How did it affect your IBS symptoms? I would love to hear about your experience with dietary changes.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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