There are several vitamins for Irritable Bowel Syndrome sufferers that may be of interest to you.
They are vital, natural nutrients required by your body and are usually cofactors, required by enzymes to work.
They are also antioxidants, preventing the production of free radicals which can cause harm to tissues and promote disease.
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Probably the best example and most significant in IBS sufferers is Vitamin D, which is required by your body to regulate calcium metabolism and bone growth.
Vitamin D is often supplemented with the mineral calcium as low levels are associated with hypocalcaemia or low calcium levels.
This natural mineral is required by muscle cells to cause contraction to occur so it is no surprise that, if there is any issue of slightly low levels, these movements may be altered.
Vitamin D is manufactured by sunlight, so it is important that your body is exposed to light. If you don’t expose yourself to sunlight or perhaps live in a part of the world that doesn't have much sunlight, it is no wonder that an issue could occur.
This vitamin deficiency can cause rickets and we know that this is on the increase in children within the UK, probably because of lack in sun exposure (too many indoor computer games, taking away of sporting facilities at school may be contributors) and the use of high sun block (no bad thing though).
Replacing Vitamin D might help some sufferers and certainly there has been some evidence to favor this, but not everyone (1).
Certainly it may be of more benefit to you if you have IBS-D or diarrhea predominant disease.
Low levels of Vitamin B6 are associated with increased IBS symptoms (2) and supplementing this may help some people’s symptoms.
Vitamin C and the natural fat soluble vitamins E, A and K have yet to show any definite correlation with IBS.
Of course, this doesn't come as any great surprise as your bowel doesn't lose its ability to absorb these substances.
Also, a lot of vitamins are found in fortified foods so you are exposed to good doses of these vital nutrients.
1) Vitamin D3 As A Novel Treatment For Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Single Case Leads To Critical Analysis Of Patient-Centred Data
Sprake, EF et al. BMJ Case Rep. 2012 Dec 13;2012.
2) Low Intake Of Vitamin B6 Is Associated With Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms
Ligaarden SC et al. Nutr Res 2011 May;31(5):356-61.
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