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Will IBS cause me to lose weight?

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Updated October 23, 2013

Question: Will IBS cause me to lose weight?
Answer:

Weight loss or gain is not a typical symptom of IBS. However, for some people weight changes occur due to food choices made in an effort to control IBS symptoms.

IBS and Weight Loss

Weight loss can occur when a person tries to cope with the disorder by strictly restricting what he or she eat. However, this is NOT recommended as a treatment for IBS, as it could result in malnutrition. A better strategy is to try to learn what foods your body can best tolerate (see below).

IBS and Weight Gain

Some individuals find themselves gaining weight as they limit themselves to "safe" foods that aren't necessarily the healthiest. Weight gain may also occur as a result of an inability to exercise regularly due to disruptive IBS symptoms. Lastly, IBS can result in bloating which would make a person look and feel "heavier".

What to Do?

Whether your issue is with weight loss or weight gain, learning which foods are best suited for your body and which foods are less likely to set off symptoms may help you to optimize your diet to help your body to return to a more natural weight. The following articles will provide you with some guidance. Please make sure to look at the FODMAPs article as this diet provides you with research-based information regarding which fruits and vegetables are good and bad for a person with IBS.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained on this site is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment rendered by a licensed physician. It is essential that you discuss with your doctor any symptoms or medical problems that you may be experiencing.

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