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I have been suffering with IBS (predominantly IBS-D with flatulence) for about 6 years (since I was 13) and have tried various methods: CBT, Hypnotherapy, Medication (domperidone, mebeverine, antidepressents etc) and going lactose free. Since september I have been trying out more life impacting diet changes that have caused a loss of weight, the FODMAP diet, although i found helped with the wind, didn't help with my actual bowel movements, it was only after speaking to a friend how i found the Celestine Clinic which offered alternative ways of helping such things as IBS.. upon going there I was "diagnosed" with Candida, and told i further couldn't eat onions or dairy.

Following the Candida diet for 3 months (till start of January) i noticed a massive improvement in my symptoms with gas still however (something that I am extremely psychologically affected by and causes lots of distress) though I still had relapses, there was definitely an improvement in my symptoms. However as low carb low sugar i found to lose extreme amounts of weight, with my BMI reaching 17.

I have come off this diet but I can't help but feel anxious whenever I eat knowing I could be eating a certain 'bad food' as I've noticed my tummy is sensitive to a lot. I've noticed more wind when i consume potatoes and sugar and am not sure if this is an actual thing? Even though I'm sticking gluten and dairy free, it's extremely restrictive with what I do and don't eat.
I also find it extremely strange how eating Freefrom foods increases discomfort and causing excessive gas and loose bowels?

I have tried an anti depressant recently but found it to decrease my sex drive and make orgasms more difficult which caused me to cut back from 10mg to 2.5mg, though it minorly improved my gas symptoms and I just feel conflicted as to whether to increase to 5mg but the side effects were extremely distressing and increased my anxiety.

I have tried to put as much detail in as possible but probably left out some bits?
My main concern is if anyone else has had this difficulty when trying exclusion diets and I fear I will never eat normally again and it feel worthless as I can't eat normally yet my symptoms are still here, but eating the food I could eat before just makes everything worse?

And is the Freefrom food difficulties more ingredients I should cut out or is it the high sugar? I just feel completely helpless and out of my depth
 

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Most people exclude onions and dairy on the low fodmap diet so not sure why you were eating them regularly before the Candida thing.

FWIW, what would feed yeast will feed bacteria, and both make gas out of the same exact things so there isn't usually that much difference in the diets.

If the only thing that really bothers you is dairy try taking lactase with meals to digest the lactose into sugars you absorb better.

Not sure what Freefrom foods are?

you might try being less restrictive but adding more good fats (olive oil or virgin coconut oil for example) to try to up your calories without adding more gas. Sugar/carbs aren't the only way to get calories in.

Different antidepressants have different side effects so maybe talk to the doctor about a different one, especially if you are playing guess the dose without involving the doc.

You may also talk to the doc about seeing a registered dietician who can help you figure out how to eat enough of the foods that work well with your system and not feel you just can't eat or can't have a normal life if you have to in anyway limit any given ingredient.
 

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Hi FAAF,

I'm sorry you are having so much trouble with your gut, you've opened a lot of issues/questions.

I've got loads of questions - not too many obvious solutions just ideas.

I think perhaps the way to deal with IBS is to look at possible problems and try and rule them out, hopefully until you end up with a solution of some sorts.

The NHS is rubbish but has your Dr tested you for Celiac Disease? They do at least test for that and as you are losing weight it's a good option to rule out. I think you have to be eating wheat at the time for them to do an accurate test, so you should tell your doctor that you have been avoiding it and they'll let you know how long you have to eat it for before you can do the test.

If you have celiac disease and your gut has been damaged it can take a year or more for the gut to repair so you may not have seen an obvious end to symptoms on giving up gluten. It may not be a problem but good idea for anyone with IBS-D and gas to start there to rule it out (and weight loss).

OK if that's not the problem or you've already been tested....

You said they diagnosed you with Candida - how did they test for it? Was the treatment diet only? What type of practitioner were they (nutritionist, dr something else)?

I'm not sure that diet alone is a solution for Candida. They usually do it with natural antifungals like oregano oil, garlic, grapeseed extract etc. And others say you have to tackle the 'biofilm' too. If you did it by just avoiding sugar then reintroducing sugar would bring the candida back and cause gas. I'm not sure how much sugar you're eating is it daily, 3 times a day - what are you eating? Perhaps you could give us an idea of your usual diet? Freefrom foods may contain High Fodmap ingredients, and yes as you say if you are eating a lot of sugar that's never going to be good for IBS.

Why are you gluten and dairy free btw? If it's a problem with lactose there is Lactofree range in the UK, and hard cheese like cheddar is pretty much lactose free naturally.

In terms of putting on weight, any chance that your Dr could refer you to a nutritionist? Otherwise what's your tolerance for fat? Do you take any digestive enzymes, that can help ease the burden on your not very happy gut? I take one with HCL as I think my stomach is a bit low, and I think it's very good called Nutrigest. Otherwise if it gives you a lot of heart burn, perhaps try one without like Polzyme Forte.

Hope that's some help.
 
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