Research shows as much as 70% of people with IBS actually have SIBO/IMO.
SIBO can be a debilitating condition but with the right intervention, it does not have to become a lifelong battle.
There are 3 components to a SIBO/IMO treatment:
Supplements &/or medication
There are a myriad of SIBO diets out there. Which diet will be right for you will depend on your symptoms as well as your current dietary habits.
The Low-FODMAP diet
This is probably the most well known diet for addressing IBS and SIBO.
“FODMAPs” is an acronym that stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. It requires restricting certain fermentable carbohydrates in your diet which can be found in foods like garlic, onions, asparagus and beans. Studies have shown that a low FODMAP diet can improve symptoms in about 60% to 70% of IBS sufferers, which can in turn show great results for SIBO sufferers as well. The low FODMAP should not be followed for an indefinite amount of time as it is very restrictive and can modify the intestinal microbiome with its lack of fiber. It remains a great tool to reduce symptoms and proliferation post SIBO treatment.
More information on my Low-FODMAP Meal Plans here.
The SCD or Specific Carbohydrate Diet
This diet has traditionally been used to treat Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s and Celiac disease. It restricts certain carbohydrates which are thought to feed the pathogenic bacteria in the gut and cause inflammation in the body. By restricting complex carbohydrates, you are essentially starving out the overgrowth in the intestinal tract. It can be daunting to take on as it removes rice, all grains including wheat, corn, oats and rice, sugar, potatoes, sweet potatoes and high lactose foods. It is even more restrictive than the low FODMAP diet and has the potential of helping those who still experience symptoms on a low FODMAP diet.
More information on my SCD Meal Plans here.
The SIBO Specific Diet
The SIBO specific food guide diet was created by Dr. Allison Siebecker. It combines the low FODMAP and SCD diets. It has a color-coded system of legal, moderate and illegal items ranging from green, to yellow, to orange then red. The SIBO specific guide gives recommended portion sizes for each food. As with the low FODMAP and SCD diets, it is not meant to be followed on a long-term basis but can be a very useful diet to implement post-SIBO treatment in order to starve out any remaining overgrowth and avoid relapse.
More information on my SIBO Specific Recipe Book here.
The Cedars-Sinai diet (Low Fermentation Diet)
This diet was first developed by Dr. Mark Pimentel of Cedars Sinai Hospital. Also known as the low-fermentation diet, it restricts the consumption of fermentable carbohydrates while allowing easily digested starches and sugars. It is slightly easier to follow for some patients as it is less restrictive than the low FODMAP, SCD and SIBO-Specific diets. One important component of the diet is the spacing of meals and limiting late-night snacking. It allows for easily digested carbohydrates such as rice, potatoes and sweet potatoes.
Stress management and good sleep hygiene is very important when addressing SIBO. While dietary and supplemental or medical intervention is important when tackling this disorder, patients should not ignore the psychological factors that can either exacerbate or assist in the remission of SIBO.
Supplements and medication
Working with your doctor naturopath or SIBO nutritionist such as myself is essential when addressing this challenging health issue. Most doctors will recommend a round of specific antibiotics in order to eradicate the bacterial overgrowth while naturopaths often recommend antimicrobials as a course of treatment. Both treatments can be highly effective.
For more information on addressing your digestive issues, head to my booking’s page.