April is National Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) month- What it is, and What you can do

          Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) affects about 9-23% of people worldwide, affects 1 in 7 Americans, and mostly women. It affects the large colon, with common waxing and waning symptoms of cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, and constipation.

Risk factors include history of mental or physical abuse, family members with IBS, female gender, and people under 45 years old.

Triggers may include food intolerance, stress, hormones (women tend to have more severe symptoms the week or two before their menses), anxiety, depression, or another ailments.

However, according to the mayo clinic, symptoms such as blood in your stool or rectal bleeding, rapid weight loss, or progressing abdominal pain or pain at night, may indicate a more serious condition.

Treatment for IBS should aim to address the underlying cause of disease, such as triggers, and any digestive issues that may warrant further investigation.

                                                                So, what can you do?
Decreasing stress is a great place to start:

               -Breathe in for at least 5 counts, and out for at least 5 counts, ten times. You are now activating your parasympathetic response, your rest and digest, creating a relaxing sensation all over your body, as well as easing digestion.
               -Sip on some chamomile or lavender herbal tea- Yogi makes a delicious honey and lavender tea.
               -Take an Epsom salt bath, which is rich in magnesium- the “anti-stress mineral.”