I am 33 years old and have had IBS for most of my life as far as I can tell, although I was not diagnosed until my late teens/early twenties. Last Christmas I had a horrible flare up and was so ill I couldn't even eat anything. I finally began to slowly start being able to eat a plain, bland diet. I lost 70lbs in like 7 months because of how little I could eat. I finally got my weight stabilized in June and it has stayed stable since then. I am able to eat more than I could in the summer. But it is still not very much. I basically only have a couple fruits and one or two vegetables I can tolerate now, and I am limited to very plain meals, still. I can eat baked potatoes, mashed potatoes only if they are dairy free, bacon, ham, pork tenderloin, chicken, turkey, rice, cereal, eggs, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. (So I can eat bread, jelly, and peanut butter) I can drink clear soda, grape juice, rice milk, decaf tea (at least I could until I drank some that didn't taste right because I think it might have been expired/stale and now I can't bring myself to drink it anymore) The fruits I can eat are grapes, strawberries, and bananas. The veggie I can tolerate right now is green beans. I can probably eat shrimp and fish too, I used to eat them in the summer and they gave me no problems so I should be able to tolerate them still too. I can also eat pretzels and goldfish crackers, as well as saltines and ritz crackers. I just feel stuck because I don't want to eat or drink something that will trigger all my worst IBS symptoms. I am feeling a bit deprived because I have so few foods I can eat and so many of the tasty foods I enjoyed eating in the past now make me horribly ill. It is difficult to avoid feeling deprived when everyone around me can eat whatever they want without excruciating pain and horrible sickness, but I can't. It is very hard when my family is having something like pizza or barbequed ribs which smell absolutely delicious and they are really enjoying themselves but I cannot eat those things and have to have a completely different meal to avoid getting sick. It also doesn't help that I am lactose intolerant and have to avoid any foods with dairy products in them. (except goldfish crackers for some odd reason) The lactose intolerance makes buying canned or boxed foods very difficult because milk, cheese, and butter sneak their way into those kinds of foods very often. I have to read labels very carefully to keep from eating dairy that could make me really sick. It is hard to find recipies that I can eat because of my lactose intolerance and then even if I do, it would trigger my IBS for another reason, like the spices and herbs used to make it. It is hard to find tasty things I can eat so I am very reluctant to try new foods. I need to add more foods to my diet because I am pretty sure I am not getting enough nutrition. What should I do? How do I get past these worries and fears and add more foods to my diet? How do I find tasty things that my gut will actually tolerate? How do I know if there are any herbs or spices I can eat without getting sick? I am so sick of the uncertainty and anxiety I have about eating with my lactose intolerance and IBS. I am avoiding trigger foods, but I am probably avoiding foods that would be helpful, too. I am suck and need advice. Please help.