Linseed for IBS symptoms of constipation and diarrhea can really make a difference.
Also known as flaxseed, this is a natural soluble fiber has the benefits of both being cheap and readily available.
With this in mind, I would like to explain more about this, where it comes from, how you can use it and the evidence that it might just work for you!
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They come from the flax plant which grows in most climates and produces a beautiful blue flower.
It produces a fiber crop from which the seeds can be extracted.
It is the seeds which contain omega-3-fatty acids and minerals including , magnesium, manganese, phosphorus and copper.
It also contains thiamine or vitamin B1, needed for to help conversion of carbohydrate in to energy by the body.
It works well in irritable bowel syndrome as it is a soluble fiber.
Being soluble, it is a lot gentler on your intestine and is digested better than the more common insoluble fibers.
It seems to reduce bloating commonly associated with the condition and can improve the transit or movement of your stools (poo) through your intestines.
It can also help in diarrhea predominant symptoms by forming a more solid stool to pass.
If you are wheat intolerant or have celiac disease, this is the ideal alternative for you to take.
Other bowel conditions such as diverticular disease and inflammatory bowel diseases can be helped by the addition of linseed.
Looking for evidence of effectiveness of linseed for IBS, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence, but little clinical trial evidence.
There was a small study published in 2012 where 40 people were offered either the whole seeds or ground seeds and compared to sufferers who didn’t have either forms.
They reported no difference in the stool frequency or consistency, but reported that they may be useful in relieving symptoms.(1)
1) Effects Of Linseeds On The Symptoms Of Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial.
Cockerell, KM et al. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2012 Oct:25(5):435-43.
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Was diagnosed with having IBS 11 yrs ago, have tried everything to no avail. Two years ago was told by my gastroenterologist that he thought it was gluten intolerance so went on a gluten free diet for a year but symptoms still persisted. Started taking Linseed for IBS symptoms I have 3 months ago and since them have had no problems - coincidence or what, I cannot explain it but they appear to have worked for me. I grind them up and put them in yogurt or even on toast.