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Overactive Bowel – Irregularity and Fiber

Irregularity is a condition that affects both men and women. For some it can be overactive bowel: for others it can be constipation. Focusing on overactive bowel, the symptoms can be frequent stools or it can be diarrhea. It is very bothersome through the aging process. There are many diseases that cause overactive bowel, for example: Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diverticulitis or diverticulosis, polyps and even constipation.
These bowel conditions require careful diagnosis. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis can be serious chronic conditions and can develop at very young age. These diseases can be treated or be in remission, but depending on the severity of the illness, and how your health is affected, a colostomy may be necessary. If you notice any symptoms such a mucous- looking stool, blood in the stool, watery stools or even a pattern of diarrhea and constipation you should consult your physician.
Gatroenterologists, doctors that specializes in problems of the digestive tract, agree that fiber helps your digestive system function regularly to prevent overactive bowel. There are two types of fiber: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber slows digestion: it forms a gel when it mixes with water and will make loose stools more solid. In addition, it binds to fat in the digestive system to help eliminate them. Some examples are oatmeal, nuts and seeds, dried beans, peas, lentils, strawberries, blueberries, apples and citrus fruit. Insoluble fiber adds bulk to stools to help food move through your digestive system. It holds water so it softens stool to prevent constipation and promotes regularity. Insoluble fiber is found in foods like seeds, popcorn, wheat bran, whole grains (such as, whole wheat bread and brown rice), and most vegetables including carrots, cucumbers and tomatoes.
You should include both types of fiber in your diet. However, if you are using fiber to treat overactive bowel symptoms talk to your doctor about how much of each type of fiber you need. Normally, you need 21-38 grams of fiber per day depending on your age and sex.
The amount of fiber in foods is listed on the “NUTRITION FACTS” label of all foods. It is part of the carbohydrate category. You should add fiber to your diet gradually increasing a small amount daily to avoid bloating, cramping or gas. You need to give your body time to adjust. It is also important to increase the amount of water you drink as you increase your fiber intake. So there you have it, a way a natural way to treat overactive bowel.
As you are adjusting your diet to improve your symptoms remember that DryForLife offers a discreet and completely confidential solution to all your incontinence needs.  We are here to help, and we have been providing incontinence products for over forty years.

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