IBS is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder characterized by recurring symptoms of abdominal discomfort or pain associated with an altered bowel habit, either constipation, diarrhea, or both. In IBS, the GI tract may function differently, processing more slowly (or more quickly) than the average person.
Dr. Gerald Friedman of The Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and co-investigator Greg Biancone conducted a multi-center analysis to determine if a multi-strain probiotic was effective in reducing the frequency of diarrhea in 84 IBS patients (IBS-D). In this small study, a multi-strain probiotic administered daily for 28 days normalized bowel habits in IBS patients compared to those who received the placebo. The average number of daily diarrheal episodes in the probiotic group significantly decreased from day 1 to day 28 compared to slight decreases in the placebo group during the same period.
In a placebo-controlled, double-blinded, cross-over study conducted at seven pediatric GI centers in the United States, Italy, and India, Dr. Stefano Guandalini of the University of Chicago and his research team randomly assigned 59 pediatric IBS patients to receive either a probiotic agent or a placebo for six weeks. At the end of six weeks, patients switched to the other arm of the study and underwent six more weeks of treatment. Patients filled out a questionnaire to assess their symptoms and overall quality of life before and after treatment. Researchers found the probiotic agent was safe and significantly more effective than the placebo in alleviating IBS-related symptoms (abdominal pain/discomfort, bloating, stool dysfunction) in children and teenagers.
Both of these studies demonstrate the dramatic effectiveness of probiotics in addressing what is usually a long-term, chronic problem of the digestive tract created as a consequence of antibiotic use. Antibiotics destroy the normal populations of bacteria and yeast, and allow for other micro-organisms to grow unchecked within the digestive tract and throughout the body.
Probiotics are dietary supplements composed of beneficial strains of bacterial and yeast cultures that promote health in the body. The use of probiotics by themselves will create temporary changes. Long-term reversal of IBS and many other conditions originating in the digestive tract can be accomplished through whole body detoxification, restoring the normal healthy ratios of beneficial bacteria and yeast, and eliminating systemic candida fungal infections that arise from antibiotic use. For more information on restoring health, go to www.mccombsplan.com.