Health Tip: Help Control IBS Symptoms

Manage your diet and your emotional health

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(HealthDay News) -- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) occurs when the intestines squeeze too hard -- or not hard enough -- as food passes through. Symptoms may include diarrhea or constipation, bloating, and a feeling that you still need to pass a stool, despite having recently passed one.

The American Academy of Family Physicians offers these suggestions to help control IBS symptoms:

  • Limit fats in your diet, and stick to a variety of healthy foods.
  • Boost dietary fiber or take a fiber supplement.
  • Avoid foods that seem to trigger your IBS symptoms.
  • Drink lots of water each day.
  • Break your meals into six smaller ones, instead of three big meals.
  • Don't use laxatives to treat constipation. Their use can weaken the intestines and make your body dependent on them.
  • Learn and adopt stress management techniques.

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