Ayurveda is a holistic healing tradition, which is focused on a wide range of therapeutic and remedial treatments for practically any condition. It is one of many natural treatments or therapies that are used on a daily basis to provide relief and healing for ailments and disease, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Many of these are gaining widespread acceptance with the medical establishment, and are increasingly featured alongside traditional medical treatments.
What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a very common condition that affects the digestive system, and has no readily identifiable cause. There are some known triggers, which include certain foods, anxiety, stress and infection. Women appear to be more likely to experience IBS, with the condition likely to appear in early adulthood. Conventional medical treatment options include the use of antibiotics, dietary modifications and stress management. Typical symptoms of IBS include:
- Stomach pains
- Bloating with wind
- Nausea and vomiting
- Anxiety and stress
What is Ayurveda?
The Ayurvedic healing tradition, which has its roots in India, analyses a person based on the universe's five basic elements - air, earth, space, fire and water – with every person comprised of 3 basic metabolic types or doshas. Any ailment, disease or condition is seen as an imbalance in one of the doshas. All Ayurvedic treatments are holistic and based on a consultation with a practitioner that is guided by which dosha you are. This enables the practitioner to construct a physical and psychological profile which includes your specific lifestyle preferences and characteristics. Treatment may involve elements of dietary advice, herbal medicine, meditation, massage as well as yoga.
How Can Ayurveda Help IBS?
A consultation with an Ayurvedic practitioner will typically examine the health and lifestyle of an individual. This will include dietary factors, including potential food intolerance and any food stimulants that may be part of an individual’s diet. Prescription may include a range of treatments including herbal remedies, dietary advice, yoga and massage. Elimination of lactose based foodstuffs and toxins such as caffeine and alcohol are likely; together with stress reduction techniques such as meditation and Ayurvedic massage.
Ensure that your Ayurvedic health practitioner is trained and appropriately qualified. Membership of an association often gives you some level of assurance as to the competence and level of training of a practitioner.
Find out about other effective natural treatments for IBS.