As I mentioned in my previous SIBO blog post – there is a strong connection between symptoms and onset in regards to SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth) or IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).
|SYMPTOM||SIBO IBS||NON-SIBO IBS|
|Often better with fibre||No||Yes|
|Often improved with antibiotics||Yes||No|
|Better with probiotic containing prebiotics||No||Yes|
|Bloating after meals||Within 5-20 minutes||Often after a few hours|
|Onset after case of food poisoning||Yes||No|
This table thanks to www.sibotest.com shows this in a very easy way to read and understand.
With SIBO being a leading cause of IBS.
Now to refresh your memory SIBO is a bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine that causes hydrogen, methane and/or hydrogen sulphide gas production. These gases can cause the symptoms of IBS but also long term damage the intestinal wall.
IBS can have several causes— food sensitivities, dysbiosis of the large intestine, lack of digestive enzymes or hydrochloric acid,or stress to name a few. Along with SIBO which is actually a very common undiagnosed cause of IBS (up to 84%) sharing a lot of similar symptoms.
Testing for SIBO
The ability to recognise and test for SIBO has improved considerably over the last few years with a consistently growing about of research to best support diagnosis.
The most commonly used test is the Lactulose only breath test – involving the testing of only Lactulose. This has proved beneficial due the fact that Lactulose is not absorbed essentially providing a food source for any bacteria present.
The bacteria within the small intestine then ferment the testing Lactulose and produce hydrogen and/or methane Which are diffused into the bloodstream and exhaled via the breath.
Other test varieties can include the:
Lactulose & Glucose breath test – in which both are tested for. The addition of Glucose provides an additional food source for the bacteria, however does have its draw backs as glucose is absorbed quickly and can often miss the bacterial overgrowth further down the small intestine.
Lactulose, Glucose & Fructose breath test- the most detailed of them all. As once again fructose also provides a food source for bacteria. Therefore if symptoms are severe this test would provide the most amount of information to assist in the treatment phase especially in regards to dietary support.
So now you are probably thinking how can I treat my SIBO?
Treatment often involves the use of antibiotics, however, relapse are common. SIBO is evidently a chronic condition although can be cured with persistence, patience, change in diet and the right supplements.
We will be exploring treatment options in my next blog as we delve into specific treatment diets that will support SIBO, IBS and fructose malabsorption issues.
If IBS, SIBO or any other digestive related condition is effecting your life – Book your appointment now to start the process to feeling your best in every moment. You don’t need to continue to live with digestive bloating, cramping or changeable bowels – let’s work together to get your health back on track.