IBS epidemic…

In my last post, I mentioned that I was in the hospital this past week. I was getting my insides checked for scary things, and it turns out there are none (yay!) 
Instead, my far-too-handsome-to-be-checking-my-insides doctor confirmed that I have IBS. 
What is IBS? IBS stands for Irritable Bowel Syndrome. There are a lot of opinions out there about whether it actually exists, what the causes are, etc. It essentially means “your belly isn’t happy and we aren’t sure why”. There is no one cause, no one solution, but it is an indication that something is a little… well… off kilter in your gut.
Here’s what I’ve realized since being diagnosed several months ago: IBS is epidemic, especially among young women. Three of my very best friends have been diagnosed with IBS and the plethora of blogs on this topic is absolutely overwhelming.

Why the epidemic? 
Is it because the food we are eating is incredibly bad?  Possibly, but the people I know who suffer from IBS are among the healthiest eaters I know. They eat like saints on a cleanse.
And why so many women? Is there something in the extra X chromosome that makes us particularly susceptible to digestive issues? Possibly… but I doubt it.
The most delicious decaf almond mylk latte from Mylk Uncookies… joyous yum!
I think what we really have on our hands is an epidemic of unhealthy relationships with food and our bodies. Men certainly suffer from this as well, but women are particularly afflicted with calorie-counting, thigh-lamenting, and obsessions with being “healthy”.
Many of us see food as the enemy. We worry about how the calories will manifest on our bodies before we even take a bite. We worry about what the glutenous croissant will do to our GI track before we even order it. It’s no wonder then, that the food we eat often becomes an unhealthy lump in our stomachs that our bodies just don’t know how to deal with. 
Sure, there are common triggers and things that can be removed to make you feel better (wheat, dairy, deep fried and processed foods) but I would venture to say that none of that will work if your relationship with food is completely out of whack.
My new favourite dark chili chocolate from Chocosol!!
To cut this already far too long post short, I leave you with this to contemplate: your stomach is your second brain. It’s something my holistic nutritionist told me and my GI doc reiterated this week. Quite simply, if you’re stressed, anxious, unhappy with life or worried about your dietary issues, your stomach will reflect that and even the healthiest green juice will cause problems.  
So how can you give your stomach… and yourself… a break?
More about all of this soon… as for now, I’m off to enjoy the sunshine!
Happy tumbles and stumbles!

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