How VSL#3 can help your IBS
As many of you know I’ve had a long and complicated relationship with my IBS and I’m always searching for a solution to support my gut. It seems like the word “probiotic” is used lots in the gut health world these days and it looks like there’s good reason for that. I’m currently working with my dietician and one of the many things that’s been suggested to help with my IBS is probiotics.
Healthy Gut – Healthy mind
Anxiety is something I suffer from quite greatly as a result of my IBS and it can often be a vicious cycle. When I’m having a bad IBS day, this sets off my anxiety which then contributes to making my symptoms worse. Or if I’m anxious about an event, this then sets of my IBS and then makes me even more anxious. I feel like I know exactly what people are talking about when the mention the gut-brain axis!
As scientists are discovering more about the effects of microbiota on the digestive system and gut-brain axis, nutrition expert Miguel Toribio-Mateashighlights how high doses of live bacteria can help to break what is referred to as the ‘IBS stress cycle’.
There are so many studies coming out now about how the FODMAP diet can have an effect on our gut bacteria, and I guess that’s why we want to top up the good bugs in our gut, to help keep it happy!
“We now know that a balanced healthy gut flora can have a positive effect not just on our physical health but also our mental wellbeing transforming the way we treat gastrointestinal conditions, such as IBS” explains nutrition practitioner and doctoral researcher in clinical neuroscience Miguel Toribio-Mateas. Miguel chairs the British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT).
The impact of IBS
I’m not shy in highlighting the impact IBS has had on my work and personal life, I’ve had to make so many adaptations, some of which I’ve found very difficult to make and also very difficult to come to terms with. The negative impact of IBS on wellbeing was highlighted in a recent survey which revealed that the symptoms of IBS, including abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence and changes in toilet habits, have a profound effect on quality of life impacting on work, sex life and sleep. See some of the result below.
The role of Probiotics
IBS is thought to be caused by an imbalance of the 100 trillion bacteria that live in the gut and it is now known that a decreased gut-microbiota richness and diversity can also directly impact on mental wellbeing. “Supercharging the gut with high doses of specific types of healthy live bacteria can help restore a balanced gut flora providing long-term relief from the symptoms of IBS and breaking the IBS stress cycle” adds Miguel.
Did you know that VSL#3 contains the highest concentration of good bacteria? It is clinically proven to relieve IBS symptoms including abdominal pain, bloating and flatulence within just 4-8 weeks, helping to restore quality of life for the 1 in 5 who suffer from IBS. VSL#3 contains eight strains of beneficial live bacteria and works by delivering a high volume of good bacteria that are proven to survive the harsh conditions of the stomach allowing them to reach and colonise the gut where they restore a healthy balance. Below shows how VSL#3 compares with other supplements on the market.
How do you take VSL#3?
VSL#3 needs time to rebalance your gut flora, so it is recommended to take it for at least a month to feel the benefits.
Taking VSL#3 is simple and convenient. You can:
- Mix the sachet contents into any cold, non-fizzy drink.
- Sprinkle directly onto cold food like yoghurt.
The Poly-biotic can be taken at any time of the day. The recommended daily intake is 1 or 2 sachets a day.
VSL#3 is available as a box of 10 sachets (£14.95) from www.vsl3.co.uk.
AD. This post was in partnership with VSL#3, I have not tried this probiotic, but I do take a daily probiotic.