Seattle, WA (PRWEB) April 16, 2012
Imagine the sudden onset of abdominal pain so severe it leaves you unconscious on the floor. Envision suffering from diarrhea or constipation so unpredictable and debilitating you plan your life around bathroom access. Now imagine being told by doctors that your diagnosis has no cure.
Fifty million Americans with Irritable Bowel Syndrome know exactly how this feels, but odds are they don't know that help is available. This April marks the 16th annual IBS Awareness Month, publicizing a condition so prevalent that, though rarely talked about, is the leading cause of worker absenteeism after the common cold. IBS is a physical brain-gut dysfunction characterized by recurring abdominal pain in association with constipation, diarrhea, or both. More than 20% of Americans suffer from IBS, which affects more women than men. The cause of IBS remains unknown.
For too long, IBS sufferers were dismissed by physicians, ignored by researchers, and left to suffer in silence. In recent years this situation has changed dramatically, with a rising awareness of the profound differences lifestyle modifications can make. As part of IBS Awareness Month, the patient self-help organization HelpForIBS.com now celebrates a decade of providing information, support, and immediate tangible help for Irritable Bowel Syndrome sufferers.
“If you have IBS, you are not alone,” says HelpForIBS.com founder and best-selling IBS author Heather Van Vorous. “Living with IBS doesn’t mean living in misery. There are numerous strategies people can use to prevent all IBS symptoms, and a happy healthy lifestyle is absolutely possible. Though IBS is often portrayed as the punch line to a joke, it’s no laughing matter. People with IBS need to hear that their suffering is completely unnecessary.”
Though IBS patients report using nearly 300 different types of prescription and over-the-counter medications in attempts to find relief, many are now discovering (and research studies are supporting) that non-drug approaches to the disorder are far more effective and safer. Specifically, patients find success with:
- the groundbreaking IBS dietary guidelines and recipes from the book Eating for IBS, a best-seller for over a decade that has set the American IBS diet standards
- organic medical foods such as Heather’s Tummy Care products, which are keyed to specific IBS symptoms, including: prebiotic acacia senegal soluble fiber for diarrhea or constipation; enteric coated peppermint & fennel oil capsules for pain and bloating, recommended by Dr. Oz; and high volatile oil medicinal strength fennel and peppermint teas for bloating, gas, and pain.
- gut-directed hypnotherapy, an approach IBS researchers have actually called a “cure”
- emotional support via IBS communities such as the HelpForIBS.com message boards and the HelpForIBS Diet & Recipes channel at YouTube
Self-help management for IBS has proven so successful that physicians and dietitians are embracing these approaches, and referring patients to resources such as HelpForIBS.com.
IBS Awareness Month spreads the news that IBS patients are now getting the help they need, not just a diagnosis. There’s no end to IBS on the horizon, but there are many healthy ways to successfully manage - and even prevent - all Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms.
HelpForIBS.com ( http://www.helpforibs.com/ ) is the largest IBS community on the internet, with over 5 million visits per year and a membership of over 200,000 subscribers. HelpForIBS.com is dedicated to serving people with IBS, by offering education, support, and products that allow people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome to successfully manage their symptoms through simple, safe lifestyle modifications. HelpForIBS.com was founded by Heather Van Vorous, the author of Eating for IBS and The First Year: IBS, the CEO of Heather’s Tummy Care, and an IBS sufferer since age 9. Heather’s groundbreaking work in the IBS dietary field has led to her inclusion in Marquis Who's Who in Medicine and Healthcare, has been licensed by Novartis pharmaceuticals, and has been publicized worldwide by physicians, dietitians, IBS organizations, and patients.