Bloating, constipation & diarrhoea
Symptoms like bloating, constipation & diarrhoea may be related to IgG food allergy.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is diagnosed as gastrointestinal symptoms like bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, abdominal sensitivity and gas experienced for at least 3 consecutive months. Therapy mostly consists of over the counter medication like stool softeners, laxatives or that keep the symptoms under control. Your doctor may even suggest anti-anxiety medication if your symptoms are triggered by stress. Since the set of symptoms is often linked to the consumption of certain foods, people affected with IBS often develop complicated and restrictive diet plans.
An IgG food allergy test followed by an elimination and provocation diet may be an interesting approach. ImuPro allows you to change your diet very selectively based on your test results.
The diagnosis of IBS with diarrhoea, constipation or mixed.
There is not yet any specific method for the diagnosis of IBS. The diagnosis is made using the principle of exclusion. This means that the doctor or therapist investigates whether other diseases are responsible for the chronic bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhoea or abdominal pain. You may receive a label like IBS-C if you are constipation predominant, IBS-D if you mainly struggle with diarrhoea or IBS-M if you experience a mix of both.
The causes of IBS
The causes of IBS are not yet clarified. Some triggers for IBS are post-antibiotic treatment, post-intestinal infection, stress, or as you would suspect, foods. There are also microbial links with certain bacterial species in the gut.
A low-grade inflammatory condition is one possible trigger. Elevated specific IgG antibody levels to food may cause such inflammation. An elimination diet on the basis of the test result can substantially decrease symptoms of IBS.
The scientific approach to Irritable Bowel Syndrome
There are several studies that indicate a connection between elevated IgG antibodies to food and IBS. Atkinson et al. 2003 studied patients with a mild form of IBS; none of them had been diagnosed with celiac disease, lactose intolerance or other more serious ailments. One study group was on a sham diet for 12 weeks, the other one on a diet without foods with an elevated IgG level. The state of health and irritable bowel syndrome improved significantly in patients who followed the elimination diet based on the IgG test.
A 2010 study in the The Journal of International Medical Research comes to similar conclusions. 77 patients with IBS symptoms including diarrhoea were compared with a group of 26 patients without IBS; in the IBS group, there was a significantly higher proportion of patients with elevated IgG antibodies, compared to the group of non-IBS patients. The elimination diet based on foodstuffs to which the patient had developed increased quantities of IgG antibodies led to a significant reduction in the irritable bowel symptoms.
Finally a double blind cross-over study performed with the ImuPro test with patients with migraine and IBS showed a 44% reduction of abdominal pain and a 42% reduction of IBS symptoms within 10 days.
Type III food allergy may promote inflammation – like in Crohn’s disease
Crohn’s disease (CD) is a chronic inflammatory disease which most commonly affects the end of the small bowel and the beginning of the colon, but may affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract. Like ulcerative colitis, CD can be both painful and debilitating.
A delayed IgG food allergy may play a role in CD. The ImuPro concept may thus be a useful addition to usual therapies.
People suffering from CD often experience loss of appetite and may lose weight as a result. A feeling of low energy and fatigue is also common. CD is a chronic disease, so this means patients will likely experience periods when the disease flares up and causes symptoms, followed by periods of remission when patients may not notice symptoms at all.
Common symptoms of Crohn’s Disease:
- Stomach aches
- Severe bouts of watery or bloody diarrhoea
- Abdominal pain
The diagnosis of Crohn’s disease
There is no single diagnostic test for the diagnosis. Instead, it is the sum of several examinations like blood analysis, stool test, ultrasound scan, colonoscopy or gastroscopy. To ensure the right therapeutic steps, the extent and the severity of the inflammation need to be defined.
The causes of Crohn’s disease
Recent studies indicate that foods can trigger such inflammation, for example through a type III food allergy. A diet based on the elimination of such foods could supplement the standard drug therapy with anti-inflammatory medications such as corticosteroids.
CD mostly affects individual sections of the gastro-intestinal tract; most often the transition of the small intestine to the colon. The inflammation may cover the entire intestinal wall and even organs outside the intestine such as joints, eyes and skin. A particular genetic profile may predispose persons to develop CD.
The scientific approach to Crohn’s disease and IgG
As CD is an inflammatory disease, IgG antibodies could also play an important role in the disease when other factors can be excluded.
In a study published in 2010, an exclusion diet was performed upon presence of IgG to food. 79 CD patients and 20 healthy persons in a control group were examined for IgG. Afterwards, the clinical relevance of these food IgG antibodies was assessed in a double-blind cross-over study with 40 patients. Based on the IgG antibodies, an elimination diet was planned. Increased quantities of food-specific IgG antibodies were detected in CD patients. A statistically significant reduction in stool frequency compared to the control group was achieved when the CD patients complied with the specific elimination diet.
Another 2012 study aimed to show the effect of the intake of IgG positive food in CD patients in remission. In all patients, increased markers of intestinal inflammation, abdominal symptoms as well as histological evidence were found after a 3 day food challenge with IgG positive food. The authors concluded that foods with raised IgG antibody levels and food additives can provoke the symptoms and may stimulate the inflammation in patients with CD.
Discover how the unique ImuPro food tolerance testing works
With testing from ImuPro, you can quickly and effectively discover food intolerances and food allergies that may be causing the conditions above.