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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I have been burdened with excessive gas and pain my whole life and really increased when I was 10. I was born 3 months premature and have always carried around a lot of anxiety and stress. I was brought up in a vegetarian household and for the past 8 years I have been on many different diets. I have been on two different elimination diets, beans and peas (only these two things for 3 years), rice and broccoli (1.5 years) and I now have been raw for 8 months. I have spent so much time feeling miserable (from gas pains) and with doctors trying different things. I'm 19 now and I'm still not sure what is going on. Maybe my early birth messed me up, maybe its all the anxiety. I ended up developing an eating disorder from all the weird diets. I was so scared of feeling sick, that every food, even water in my stomach caused severe pain and I was eventually bedridden for 2 weeks because of gas pain in my chest. I was 17 then, I finally found relief when my naturopath told me to take homeopathic phosphorus. I ended up going to Children's hospital soon after because of my low weight. My doctor was worried, she wanted me to cure my eating disorder (at this time my family and I were like "I don't have an eating disorder, I just don't eat because it makes me ill! Why can't you wrap your brain around that?) Children's told me to eat what ever I wanted. So, I went home and ate anything, and I felt fine for 2 weeks then the symptoms slowly started coming back. I should mention that my symptoms come and go. one day I feel fine and the next its hell, it can change from hour to hour. For example, lets say I eat the same things every day, day after day and for one week I feel fine, but then all of a sudden I get horribly bloated and I'm completely miserable. A few weeks ago I had pizza and cake, felt fine. Next week I had pizza and felt like I wanted to DIE. So as you can see it is very unpredictable, this makes it hard to find out what is going on. On the raw diet I was feeling ok in the beginning, but I'm really bloated everday, all day. I feel bloated if I just drink water, eat whole grains, dairy, wheat, sugar, fruit, vegetables (raw and cooked) there isn't anything that I can put in my stomach that I know for sure I won't feel sick on. I'M SO FED UP WITH THIS ####! IT WOULD BE NICE TO FINALLY FIND A DIET WHERE I KNOW FOR SURE THAT I WILL FEEL GOOD. Like I will eat perfectly for a week (fresh veggie juice and more veggies) so I can make sure that I will feel good for the weekend when I go out. The day comes and I haven't consumed anything besides veggies and the gut pain hits and I curl up in a ball. Yesterday was Christmas and I ate perfect leading up to that day (again trying to make sure that I would feel good for that day) I was feeling fine until walking through my parents front door (the plan was to spend the day with them). I immediately had peppermint tea, didn't work, digestive tonic from Dr. Schultz, no relief, gas X, no relief, Bentyl, no relief, two different homeopathic things, no relief. During this time I desperately try to get the gas out by forcing burps and massage. Relief didn't come until the middle of dinner and I almost got up in the middle to go home because I felt so ill (pain all through chest and left side of abdomen) and I was FINE from then on. I didn't experience gurgling all night long (usually do) and I didn't wake up bloated! So weird! I ate things I don't usually eat for the Christmas dinner. IF ANYONE OUT THERE HAS SOME EXPERIENCE SIMILAR TO MINE I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR IT! I WOULD ALSO REALLY LIKE TO KNOW WHAT CAN GIVE ME SOME RELIEF WHEN THE GAS PAIN HITS. LIKE IF IM OUT AND ABOUT, FAR FROM HOME. BENTYL, GAS X, ETC. DON'T REALLY WORK FOR ME. IM NEVER COMPLETELY SURE WAS GETS RID OF THE PAIN, TIME? FOOD? MEDS? MASSAGE? TEA? I DON'T HAVE A FREAKEN CLUE. I KNOW THIS IS LONG, BUT IF YOU HAVE READ THIS FAR I GREATLY APPRECIATE IT AND WOULD LOVE TO HEAR WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY! THANKS
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I FORGOT TO MENTION THAT MY GAS PAIN COMES IN A VARIETY OF FORMS. I NEVER KNOW WHERE IT WILL SHOW AND HOW BAD. JUST LIKE HEADACHES.
 

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peas beans and broccoli all tend to be gassy foods. If you are getting almost all your food from gassy foods you are probably going to be gassy. Although it usually is the IBS that makes the gas painful, and sometimes the pain is mostly from the colon being active and moving things around, not because what it is moving around is gas. The liquids and solids are problematic as well.IBSers often have problems with raw foods so you have to see how that goes (a few do well on that) and if it makes you worse go back to cooked grains, veggies and fruits rather than all raw.On the other hand IBS often comes and goes no matter what we eat because food is not the one and only possible trigger. Sometimes the act of eating will set things off (because your stomach knows you ate and it tells the whole GI tract and it becomes more active to make room and deal with the food you just ate)If you get symptoms that come and go even on the same diet then it is likely food is not your issue. It is just getting all the blame.Many other things including how well you slept, how anxious you feel, is the weather comfortable or uncomfortable for you can all set the IBS off on some days and not others. You cannot make the other triggers go away by eating some specific diet. Not eating food A or B will not change how your body responds to lack of sleep, etc.Have you tried peppermint, or taking the antispasmodics BEFORE a meal if you tend to get symptoms after meals. Often the drugs work better if you take them ahead of the symptoms as it takes 20-60 minutes for them to work and it is easier to prevent the pain from starting than stop it after it gets a good head start and you are really miserable.If you get pain completely at random (so not worse after some meals) you might see if taking the antispasmodic regularly for a week and see if that week is better or worse than other weeks. Taking them just when things are so bad you can't take it anymore thing seems less successful than making sure it is there already when you need it.I use peppermint Altoids (some vegetarians will not eat the ones with gelatin in them) but any mint that has a strong peppermint flavor and uses real peppermint oil will work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you! That was just the answer I was looking for! I will look into the antispasmodic drugs, I hope they aren't nasty and have a lot of side affects. It is interesting that I grew up watching what I ate and I'm the one that is sick and my friends ate McDonalds and are not suffering, yet anyway. But I have anxiety that my friends do not have, I was born early, they weren't. A naturopath once told me that my digestive system and immune system didn't have time to fully develop, therefore the source of my problems might have been birth. Do IBSers practice EFT? I started it recently and it is working well, check it out. I was really hesitant at first, but I was so desperate to feel good. Broccoli isn't an issue for me. I used to think I had IBS, but I don't really fit with the checklist. I do have candida that I'm getting rid of and I believe I have had it since childhood.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well I just looked at antispas drugs and they do indeed look nasty. I'm looking for natural alternatives now. Cramp bark might be helpful. I have taken magnesium before because I know that it helps relax those muscles and I never noticed any benefit.
 

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Did you notice I said Peppermint?It can increase heartburn but doesn't cause the dry mouth or other side effects of the anticholinergics.It has a pretty good track record for pain relief on this board (as good as anything else, works for some not for others), and I don't know how many have tried cramp bark, but it may be useful to start with the commonly used things.You can get it in vegetarian capsules or make tea, or any candy without gelatin if you don't want any animal products. Even grow your own and make tea out of it. But I would either do it regularly or before meals rather than just wait for the pain to get too bad.
 

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I have major problems with gas. I have to be very careful what I eat. I can't eat sugars or milk products. Rice is the best safe food. It doesn't produce gas when digested. When things go bad, I will only eat rice and hamburger, or rice and chicken. To help keep things under control, I use enzymes and probiotics.I have found Carb Digest to be a good product: http://www.kirkmanlabs.com/[email protected]. They also sell other enzyme products. I also use Kirkman Labs probiotics and probiotics from http://www.customprobiotics.com/.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yes I have been using peppermint since I was a child. As a child I would use it when I would get the pain where you only get relief if you bend over and it gets rid of it immediately, but lately it doesn't do anything. I tried the cramp bark, so far I haven't noticed anything. I use Peppermint Spirits by HerbPharm and have tried capsules, and tea, but the last two never have worked. Today I start the candida diet so I will see where that leads.
 

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BTW the antispasmodics side effects can wane off after one is on them for a bit... I would not totally discount them without giving them an honest try if you can't find any other relief.
 

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Hi Tiger.One of the problems I've learned in trying to identify problem foods is that the variables are great & sometimes symptoms can last a few days after eating.These days l make a point of avoiding mince & sausage as well as hams & other processed meats.Even though illegal, preservatives such as phosphates & extenders, can easily be added to mince & sausage to extend its shelf life.I hate exposing myself to a variable beyond my control, especially if l'm trying to identify & eliminate problem foods.If l eat meat l'll choose whole meat or steak.In Australia a butcher was caught adding sulphur dioxide to mince in July 09, & was fined $300. A small amount to pay if you consider the amount of money lost throwing away unsellable meat over a year.
 

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Sorry to hear of your plight ValGal.Have you had gas tests done to eliminate issues such as intolerance of fructose, lactose & other problem foods?This is a scientific way of eliminating food groups from your diet so you can concentrate on building a suitable diet.Although quite nasty, l think it's great you have a diagnosis for candida. Knowing what the problem is is half the battle.Many IBS sufferers have severe symptoms but live without a specific diagnosis.How will you be tackling the candida infestation? I think if you can eliminate it successfully you might get on top of your issue.
 

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Hey ValGal,I feel like I've gone through what you've gone through, especially the unpredictable nature of the gas pain... I also have chronic tension headache, which I strongly believe is related to IBS (both symptoms appeared around the same time, about 8-9 months ago, after I started recovering from a trauma, which was ironically an eating disorder + severe weight loss that came with that and overexercise). Now I have to be exceptionally careful about what I eat and write a food diary, etc, and my doctor, whom I first saw when I had a "deranged" form of anorexia, still thinks I have disordered eating, and will not do things such as refer me to a GI... sigh. I have seen a neurologist for tension headaches, who made me do typicals like MRI scans (just because there is family history of brain tumours, but my MRI showed no abormalities). The neurologist, who I find utterly unhelpful, "prescribed" me Riboflavin, or Vitamin B2. I don't know if the B2 does anything but I took 400mg a day for a while. Then I was referred to a "headache specialist" about two months ago (who has a 9-month waiting list, but luckily for me someone canceled their appointment and I was able to see him) who prescribed me Nortryptyline. As you may know, Nortryptyline is a mild antidepressant but is sometimes prescribed for IBS as well. I've been on and off NTP, and I can say that the headaches DEFINITELY go away with NTP (I'm on the lowest dosage, 10mg). The reason I have been taking NTP on and off is because the headache specialist (who is really another neurologist who specializes in headaches only) told me that I may gain weight on NTP, and that's really the last thing I want, because that causes me stress (remember I used to be extremely restrictive about eating), which worsens IBS, and the vicious cycle... sigh. I am experimenting with my body though so I took NTP 10mg last night and the headache is definitely gone and I worry less about what I eat... somehow I find the two things related, the headaches and digestion. Another reason I hate taking it (moreso than the possible weight gain) is that it makes me feel very zoned out and not myself, I also have severe mood swings occasionally and generally feel like a robot / have a hard time having even just an inkling of emotion. It feels a little shitty, but I remain pain-free for the headaches for sure, which is sometimes needed when you're a university student and trying to cram for exams.I just wanted to mention my story since you seem to be around my age (I am a 20 year old Asian female currently living in Canada) and you also mentioned unpredictable headaches. I don't know how many people with IBS used Nortryptyline for IBS only and found it effective though... I also take acacia soluble fibre and sometimes that works like magic, sometimes it doesn't at all, in getting rid of gas pain (which is ALWAYS coupled with terrible headaches, for me).
 
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