I get cross when I see 'labels' like IBS - gut disturbance of 'unknown etiology'.It's the 'unknown' bit that is the teller here. At the end of the day, the Medical Profession are very good at giving things 'labels' when they can't diagnose the problem. "We can't figure out why so we will give it a name, give you ". Yeah, like that actually achieves anything?!There is a reason for everything. Nothing happens without cause.Just because they can't find the cause (or more likely, aren't actually looking in the right place!) doesn't mean that there isn't one.Most people 'develop' IBS. In other words, they aren't usually born with it. What has happened to make it develop?There may be many factors. Starting from the beginning, it is possible that people who weren't breastfed have not had the benefit of the immune-building nutrients found in breast milk so have already started their life with a compromised immune system. Unless the Mother followed a very good natural diet with few processed foods and low sugar and carbohydrate consumption, it seems that the quality of breast milk may diminish with each subsequent baby so those subsequent children may also have compromised immune systems.Then add into the mix the doses of antibiotics that people have been given through their lives - doses that are known to damage the gut flora balance and leave the digestive system vulnerable to attack from pathogenic microbes and/or parasites. Most people end up with thrush or other Candida issues after taking them - that is because the gut defenders have been destroyed. Kill the soldiers and the city is undefended. It seems that there are well over 5,000 different strains of bacteria living in our gut. Apparently one course of antibiotics can destroy 30% - many of them protective microbes that we can never get back....With a compromised flora and immune system we are then also vulnerable to parasitic attack. The Medical Profession is not looking for parasites. They are viewed as 'tropical' issues, but the reality is that we have enough home-grown parasites that are problematic. Besides, the World is so cosmopolitan these days that many of the 'tropical' parasites are now, and have for years, been brought to us............Because the testing procedures are pretty basic at best they are notoriously difficult to find. It seems that even stool tests don't always find them, and may need to be repeated several times over several days, or weeks, before anything is found. Parasites are a lot easier to pick up than people realize and you don't have to be a dirty person to be infested by them. They can range from things like tapeworm which can be several feet in length to one-celled protozoa.It is estimated that between 80% and 90% of the World's population is carrying some kind of parasite/s. It is a horrible subject, and not something that most people want to consider - but unfortunately neither does the Medical Profession. Gone are the days when people realized the necessity of taking regular 'de-worming' potions. These days, ironically, we are more likely to 'de-worm' our pets than we are ourselves. In reality the dog might have passed them on to us - and it is also possible that we might have given them to the dog!Food Intolerances are a growing problem and indeed the Western diet is very high in sugars and carbohydrate - both of which feed pathogens (and cancers). Much of those sugars and carbohydrates are also in highly processed food and some of that will also contain damaging stuff like high-fructose corn syrup.Sometimes it may be due to the amount of sugar and carbs consumed encouraging the growth of pathogens and sometimes it could be exacerbated by dehydration. Although we drink, most of our modern drinks are very dehydrating in their own right. Tea and coffee are diuretic, sugar and anything that turns to sugar in the body (carbs) are dehydrating as are chemical sweeteners and alcohol (as indeed is any drug or chemical that has to be processed). Not to say that having some is a problem but if that is all we drink then we are gradually eating into our hydration 'bank'. We are about 75% water. The body needs all of its quota to deal with all its processes. If it falls below that level then it has to impact on our health sooner or later. The more dehydrated the body becomes, the less able it is to fulfill certain processes, including digestion. This is not about how much drink is going through the kidneys each day, this is a gradual undermining of hydration at cellular level.There may be other factors at stake that I haven't considered (and I am sure others will come up with a few more), but this are those which I know have impacted on my health over the years. They are all good, and quite viable reasons for us to be suffering the vagaries of the IBS 'label'. Any one of them could potentially be a factor - for some of us perhaps even all of them.