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HiIt's high time I sorted myself out. I've been suffering from various IBS symptoms for about 10 years, on and off. Crunch time was on Xmas day when I couldn't eat dinner until 9pm as I had heartburn all day.Anyways, I was just wondering if anyone has an opinion on what's better - peppermint capsules(I bought enteric coated peppermint oil capsules -Holland & Barrat-UK), or acidophilus (again H&
, or can I combine both?And for how long?Current symptoms are : - needing to go to the toilet urgently about an hour after eating - sometimes it's just wind, sometimes not. Other symptoms are occasional rumbling stomach, heartburn, and nausea (which I relieve by squeezing pulse on wrist), occasional stomach cramps.My worst habit is taking either capsule for a number of days, then completely forgetting to take them, so the symptoms go and come back. My new year resolution is to try and sort this once and for all.Thanks a lot.Wish all a happy & healthy 2004!p
 

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Both of these are very different. The peppermint is an antispasmatic, and you might not want to take it if you have heartburn, or at least enteric coated ones.The other a probiotic or good gut bacteria, which is benefical in general and may help with bloating and pain.The peppermint also has some antibacterial properties.You would have to experiment on them to see if they helped or not and I would try each one, one at a time for a couple weeks to a month to see how you do.There are also other probiotics you could try, different strains."Probiotic Strategies Probiotic bacteria compete with pathogenic bacteria and also have anti-inflammatory effects on gut mucosa. For this reason, there has been increasing interest regarding the potential role of probiotics in IBS. Lactobacillus plantarum has been shown to reduce flatulence and abdominal pain but not bloating in IBS. 15 Quigley and colleagues 16 studied 77 patients with IBS who were randomized to receive either Lactobacillus spp or Bifidobacterium spp, added to a milk drink, for 8 weeks; the control group received the milk drink alone. Subjects who received Bifidobacterium had a significant improvement in pain, bloating, and stools. However, any benefit of Lactobacillus was limited to improvement in pain at only the second and seventh weeks. Hence, probiotic strain specificity may be important in determining the outcome in IBS. Probiotics represent a promising, safe therapeutic class in this clinical setting." http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/434526 "ProbioticsProbiotics are gaining increasing attention as potential therapies for IBS. 28 Uncontrolled studies have been encouraging, as evidenced by presentations during this year's scientific sessions. Positive results were reported by Bazzocchi and coworkers 29 in an open, uncontrolled trial. Similarly, in a retrospective study, Faber 30 reported significant improvement in symptoms and quality of life from baseline with probiotic therapy. However, Kim and colleagues 31 conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial and found more sobering and likely more accurate results. They found no overall symptomatic improvement associated with the probiotic they administered although bloating did improve, and they also found no change in colonic transit. Only high-quality randomized controlled trials will address the issue of whether probiotics have a place in the treatment of IBS. Furthermore, any benefit will need a mechanistic explanation, which at present is lacking." http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/444514
 
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