Influence of Dietary Restriction on Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Kamal A1, Pimentel M2. Am J Gastroenterol. 2018 Oct 12. doi: 10.1038/s41395-018-0241-2. [Epub ahead of print]

Author information

1 Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Digestive Diseases and Surgical Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH, USA.

2 Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Digestive Diseases Center, Cedars-Sinai, Los Angeles, CA, USA. Mark.Pimentel@cshs.org.


Up to two-thirds of patients with IBS attribute their gastrointestinal symptoms to food. The therapeutic focus of IBS has been to alleviate gastrointestinal symptoms, approached by pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical treatments. Although the most traditional approach has involved the use of medications such as bulking agents, anticholinergics, antispasmodics, and antidiarrheals, unfortunately these are only modestly effective and patients are left with a small menu of successful pharmacologic agents. These treatments, however, are not always enough to alleviate symptoms. Alternative approaches have therefore been tried, including dietary manipulation. This article aims to review dietary restrictions as a non-pharmaceutical management approach for IBS, covering literature on various dietary triggers and the impact of dietary manipulation on gastrointestinal symptoms.

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