IBS Cured??

This topic contains 60 replies, has 47 voices, and was last updated by  JamesC86 2 years, 4 months ago.

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  • Hi, I have 5:2ing for about 2 months now (and still enjoying). I have started to notice another potential added benefit to the fasting….I think my IBS has been cured!!

    Been suffering with IBS for 2 years and tried many remedies to control the symptoms, but about 3 weeks into the fasting I found that all of my symptoms have gone completely.

    Was wondering if anyone has noticed similar benefits ( hope so !!)

    Having (literally) only just started, its too early for me to say but I will let you know in a few months (I hope it does as IBS is the bane of my life, would be nice to drop some meds, after speaking to my doc of course!)

    Hi Zippy and pdf061072,

    I’ve been doing the fast diet for 3 months now and I can honestly say that I think my IBS of the last 25years has been cured!!!
    I just started the 5:2 with my husband to lose a little bit of weight before a holiday, we were not overweight as such, but I noticed that over the years it was just uncomfortable sometimes with my waistband digging into my waist. I am a small size 12 and sometimes a 10, have never dieted in my life and didn’t ever have to worry about calories. We have been very lucky, but since turning 50 and being diagnosed with an under active thyroid as well, I had put on half a stone and couldn’t shift it. My husband just had a bit of a spare tyre, but on the outside we would both be considered slim. 3 months on I have lost 10lbs and my husband has lost 13lb. We don’t really look that different but we can definitely feel it!!!
    The most remarkable thing is that in the second week, I realised that I wasn’t suffering my normal IBS symptoms anymore. I now have a totally flat stomach and that isn’t just the weight I’ve lost but the bloatedness that is a common symptom of IBS. I truly think this is because my digestive system is getting a ‘rest’ on fast days. I would urge anyone who has IBS to consider trying the fast diet – it could surprise you!!! Thanks for this Michael

    Hi Crispbacon, really pleased to hear that you have found the same effects on your IBS as I have. I totally agree that it may be to do with giving the body a bit of a rest to do what it has to do.
    Long may the results go on!!

    I’ve only been on the 5:2 for a week and a half and am on my third fast day today…..but the day after my first fast I noticed an almost instant change in my IBS symptoms. The pain has almost gone, no wind and best of all no running to the loo five + times in the morning!! Have actually had a day when I didn’t ‘go’ at all!!!
    I have three stones to lose but have to say I already feel like a new person. I am free, free of IBS symptoms. Long may it continue x

    I’ve been fasting since April and realised my IBS had disappeared in the first week; it must be something to do with the missed meals and a rest for the system in general. I’ve just had two weeks off for a holiday but got straight back into the swing of things as I had been eating 10 times more bread and cheese than I had been used to, (it’s not easy being vegetarian in France) and I wasn’t as stable while I was away. All is back to normal after 3 fast days.
    There are so many benefits to this diet that weren’t at first obvious. These forums are working well, thank you for setting them up.

    The only cereal I have been able to eat for the last 6 or 7 years have been Rice Krispies. After 5 months on this diet I am once again able to eat mueslie without any pain or problems. 3stone gone in 5 months without any exercising, Brilliant…..

    Hi, I have been following the 5 2 diet for about one month now and I also have noticed an almost complete stop to my IBS symptoms. I am glad to read that many people have the same experience, I have been in a state of limbo wondering if its the diet alone or some other factors. As has been said, there are other positive effects other than weight loss to this diet

    Hi Michael and Mimi,

    First of all I think that you Michael should be knighted and Mimi made a dame for all the health benefits you have created for so many people with this diet! Perhaps I’m being a bit evangelical here but I have been an IBS sufferer for over 20 years mainly as a result of having to have so many repeat courses of antibiotics throughout my lifetime – necessitated by having had fairly severe atopic eczema with repeated total body/skin infections.

    It was getting to the point earlier in the year when I really had to think whether or not I could leave the house without knowing there was a toilet nearby due to the risk of diarrhea urgency from IBS. My lifestyle was severely restricted and ruined! I was also starting to put on weight at the age of 55.

    Have been on the diet now for three months and have an almost complete loss of IBS symptoms to the point that I no longer need to live on Imodium, antidepressants and antispasmodics. Also I am eczema free for the first time in my life with nice smooth skin!! Additional benefits -lost over a stone in weight, blood pressure down from 145/95 to 125/80 and I feel better than I have ever done! Started mountain bike racing in earnest. Got my life back thanks to your pioneering work!

    So many thanks and keep up the good work


    Congrats Lawrie. I love the good news stories. Have you read today’s news about the poo pill (or poop pill if you are in Canada or USA). I’ve a friend who had the messy kind of faecal transplant and it cured her IBS so hoping for good things for other sufferers. Wish this treatment had been around 30 years ago for my sister who had an ileostomy.

    To RoBa – many thanks for your response, but i do not need further intervention for my IBS – as the fast diet has in effect cured me! but thanks for the info.

    Kind Regards


    Hi everyone

    Bizarre that I came across this as I was just saying to my fiancΓ© at the weekend that I hadn’t been suffering with my IBS since I started 5.2. Its only been 3 weeks but I have noticed a difference, I thought it was just coincidence until now! I have suffered with severe IBS for 15 years and like many of you it has affected my lifestyle to the point of being housebound at times. I have tried alleviating things from my diet on a trial and error basis over the years but to no avail. My medication works but having IBS has still affected my day to day life. I can honestly say I haven’t had the day to day, or hour to hour in some cases, of making a mad dash to the loo. I hope this continues as I too feel like I have my life back πŸ™‚

    Hi all
    I’ve been thinking of doing this diet for weight loss but wasn’t sure if fasting was good for IBS. I would love to get off the meds cause they are making me gain weight.

    Can I ask what you did on your fast days, as have found some food plans for 500 calories a day. Did you eat not eat etc.

    Any help most appreciated.

    This is encouraging. I’ve had IBS for years now, rushing desperately to the loo. I also get anxious about my IBS, which makes my IBS worse…. there’s nothing like a vicious circle!

    I have only just started this diet, and I am now looking forward to improvements in the downward direction too. πŸ™‚

    I know how you feel, even if the symptoms get better getting anxious makes everything worse. Ever tried EFT?
    I’ve only done 1 fast day, next one Friday so will see how that goes.

    Good luck


    I have had IBS (diarrhea predominant, 5 – 10 bowel movements a day)for 5 years. Through self experimentation I discovered that the following things work for me:

    1) Very low carb, high fat diet

    A Very Low-carbohydrate Diet Improves Symptoms and Quality of Life in Diarrhea-Predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome


    2) Low FODMAP diet


    3) Eating small pieces of raw ginger with meals.

    4) Fasting
    Effects of fasting therapy on irritable bowel syndrome.

    I wouldn’t say I’m cured, but I can succesfully stay symptome free most of the time using these 4 strategies. My quality of life improved dramatically. No more pain and rumbling in my belly, bloating, gases and 1-2 nearly normal bowel movements a day.

    Fasting was the last thing I tried. I pick one day in week and fast for a whole day, no food, only water. I eat breakfast next day. Fasting makes me feel more energised.

    My question to those that have been cured by fasting: Did you have IBS with constipation of IBS with diarrhea?

    Interested and very hopeful to read all the posts above. I have been doing the 5:2 diet for the last three weeks, but I have found that my IBS has gotten MUCH worse during this time. Has anyone else had similar experiences? Increased diaorrhea, for the last three weeks. Of course, the fasting and the IBS may not be connected at all, but I would be interested to hear others’ experiences. Thanks!

    As only been doing the diet for 4/5 weeks, I’m not 100% sure if it is aggregating my symptoms or just the IBS. I believe it may be causing them to flare up the day after a fasting day. Will be back on the diet in NY.

    Thanks Jujuberry23, yes, my symptoms seem to flare up on the day after the fast also. I wonder if that is something others have experienced?

    Hi, I have also just started the 5:2 (new years resolution or something like that!) and have suffered from severe IBS for the past 5 years. I had my first 500 calorie day yesterday and I struggled but I did it and noticed my IBS was worst today. From reading the above posts, I am hoping my IBS will improve. I am exhausted of having accidents in public and putting my life on hold! Fingers crossed!

    I have just started the diet this week. I have had IBS on and off for years, mostly consipation and bloating, but more recently the ‘morning rush’. I have found pro-biotics have really helped, but perhaps I will be able to dispense with these now. I was concerned to read in a 5:2 cookbook by Angela Dowden, in a list of those who shouldn’t do the diet were people with IBS. It didn’t explain why not, and I have chosen to ignore it and do it anyway, fingers crossed.

    I’m afraid I found that it really made my IBS MUCH worse. My bowel goeas into spasm after fasting when it wants to get going again. Tried it twice, lost weight but the agony the next day makes it a no-no. But i do think that it is a good diet and my sister has had great results from it.

    I’ve only just done my first 2 fast days (Friday and Sunday) so too early to say for sure how it’ll affect my IBS … am posting because I have a generally upset digestive system due to taking daily antibiotics due to having my spleen removed last March. I started taking daily pro-biotics about a month ago, and it really helped, so I’ll be continuing to drink those (28 calories out of my allowance!). Might help some of the people on here too, depending on the cause of their IBS (I have seen a medical recommendation for taking pro-biotics after a course of antibiotics to put your gut flora back, but not sure how widespread or well-researched that is – probably can’t hurt though!).

    I have been suffering with IBS with constipation for 3 years with severe bloating and distension. I thought I would try the 5:2 diet to lose weight as my weight had increased due to taking a desk job with a constant supply of cakes and biscuits which I have been unable to control the temptation to over indulge. I only work 3 consecutive days in a week and so last week on those 3 days all I had to eat was an apple at lunch time but had my evening meal and snacks as usual. I have not been able to believe that my IBS symptoms have completely disappeared! I have been reading about some IBS being caused by an overgrowth of bad bacteria and I wonder whether fasting restores the balance. Low carb diets have also had some success and bad bacteria feed on sugar and carbs.

    Hi Rachel re the probiotics after antibiotics I had to have about 6 lots along with steriods (for upper respiratory infection) a friend put me onto a product called Kefir–which has a phenomenal amount of probiotics. It’s a culture abit like yogurt to grow–but alot more full of good bacteria. Might be worth checking out.
    all the best
    What amazing news for you all with IBS–interesting know your docs’ reactions.

    Hi all. I have only been on the fast diet for a week and half and also have IBS for nearly 20 years. I take medication now and again but never found anything that really worked. Before I started this ‘diet’ I used to wake every morning with chronic stomach cramps then I had to rush to the loo (I will spare you the details!!) then throughout the day I would get more and more bloated despite what I ate. If I ever went to the Doctors I was told to eat more fibre…this is not the case for every IBS sufferer so it annoys me when they tell me to eat more fibre as it makes my IBS 10 x worse. Anyhow since I started the 5:2 I noticed a difference after my fast day, I woke up pain free and have continued to do so ever since and have not been bloated apart from last night. I had a go at making the cauliflower rice which I really liked but I have always had trouble with cauliflower, if it isn’t really well cooked it makes me bloated and windy :O but this morning I woke up pain free again so I think there must be something with this diet and a possible cure for IBS. With an added bonus of a 4lb weight loss in my first week I’m sticking to this ‘diet’!!!!

    What happens to the 5 a day on fast days?

    Dear Group,
    Some very encouraging posts!
    For many years, my gi tract has reacted to most foods, and medications, supps, miniscule amounts of bacteria, etc. My IBS involves severe constipation.
    The symptoms are getting progressively worse (tenderness, pain, edema).
    I notice partial fasting brings relief, but I still have insomnia from my reactions to the smaller amounts of foods I’m eating.
    I’ve tried the 5:2 diet one time, and got wonderful symptom relief but still insomnia.
    I do not have internet access, and can only get online for one hour per week at the library.
    I’m writing to see if anybody could be helped by a phone buddy, to do brief daily check-ins, which could include “committing our food for the day (or the next day)” — a practice in OA.
    I’m in the U.S. I don’t know if most participants are in the U.K….
    If phone support may help you, too, please phone me at 972-287-263 (two) to explore the possibility. I’m in Texas, Central Time (one hour behind the East Coast). 9am to 9pm.
    If there’s a better place to post this, please advise.
    Thank you, and all best wishes for curing IBS!

    Not sure if is the fasting because I have been fasting since May but my IBS has been under control since I cut back hard on grains, I did that about 2 years ago. I cannot remember when I last took a tablet for IBS and I used to take about 8 a day.

    I can have a little bit of grain – say in a sauce or a light coating once or twice a week and not suffer. However if I had cereal and toast for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch and a roll or some pasta with my evening meal I would be in trouble.

    I have been suffering from IBS constipation sincefrom last 3 years, can any one tell me how to do 5 2 diet and wht should i eat in fasting. does it really helps.

    Can you please tell me what i can eat during fasting and does it help for ibsconstipation

    Hi All, I started the diet 3 weeks ago. I also suffer from IBS, I did get worse after the first fast day, but since I have gotten steadily better. I don’t suffer from pain and bloating anymore.
    I remember after having a colonoscopy some years back that my symptoms improved a lot (I thought it was due to the fasting and prep for the procedure) for a while, but of course as I went back to my normal diet things got worse again.
    For the people who are still getting bad symptoms don’t despair! just try different things to eat and see what helps.

    Hi all, I am just starting week 5 of the 5:2. I have lost 7lbs (4lbs first week and a steady 1lb per week afterwards). I have had IBS for many years and have relied on codeine phosphate tablets to get me out the door to work each morning for the past three years or so.I haven’t had one tablet for the past 19 days . I am so chuffed with this effect and I so did not expect it. I tried the diet last hear but was a bit lacking in commitment. I tried to eat small meals though the day always felt hungry and gradually ate a lot more than 500 calories. This time round I just ate an evening meal (protein and veg) and just drink plenty of water and herbal drinks along with a couple of coffees through the day. I don’t feel hungry, I feel in control and I actually have a “bit of a buzz” going on during fast days.
    So glad I gave this diet another go. Good luck to everyone else and hope many of you with IBS get similar relief.

    Hi everyone,this forum has been a godsend! I also have been suffering from IBS for a long time now. I can go weeks without having any symptoms and then i would have a week or two where i will be in pain and feeling bloated. I went out over the weekend and had to leave early as I was having pain again. I have spoken to gp but they told me to keep a food diary. i have done this but i still cant get to the bottom of it, so now i am fed up. I have made another appointment with the doctor and this time i am going to insist on an allergy test.

    After reading these posts I am going to try this diet again and i hope it works for my symptoms. Thank you everyone and I am so glad this has worked for most of you as suffering from IBS SUCKS! x

    I have read a lot of your posts, but haven’t seen anybody mention the Low FODMAP Diet. I have to follow this diet, and while I am a lot better than I was, my IBS is definitely not under control, and my diet is so limited. So if there is anyone out there who is eating Low FODMAP and has had success with their IBS whilst on the 5:2 Diet, can you please let me know? Thanks!

    Hi, FODMAPs was mentioned in an earlier post.

    Learning about FODMAPs a few years ago changed my life, it was that dramatic. In combination with the fasting, I no longer have that problem at all tho’ I have had extended periods of constipation with ADF and even 4:3 until I got the combination of foods right on my FDs. Plus, I need to supplement a form of magnesium that I know will ease the constipation which is a pest. But, yes – it has been practical for me possibly because my appetite has diminished considerably since I started fasting in 2011 and my current portion sizes bear no resemblance to my previous ones.

    It is so nice to speak to other people who suffer from IBS! It is very interesting (but sad) that the results of the 5:2 are so mixed. I have been on the 5:2 only since Monday (today’s Friday). I have fasted on Monday & Thursday. I certainly don’t have any adverse reactions today, nor did I on Tuesday. I am so hopeful that I am going to be one of those whose IBS improves. While the low fodmap diet has made a huge difference, it certainly has not controlled the symptoms, and it is so depressing not to be able to eat the food you would like to. My husband is a vegetarian, and we can’t even eat the same meals anymore! Apart from the health benefits, and weight loss, I’m gunning for a healthier gut.

    We have been doing 5:2 for 6 weeks now and achieving some great results. weight down, sugar diabetes reading on the bottom level, but I am having trouble with loose bowel movements. Had all the tests and the body is fine apart from the bug I bought home from my last trip. The test on the sample showed Blastocystis infection which shows weight loss as one of the symptoms.
    Medication has been taken but to a very limited result.
    Would this be the reason for weight loss and would it be cured by continuing with this style of living.

    Bear If you have test results showing infection and ongoing symptoms, you need to consult with your doctor for information about that…it’s not IBS, the topic of this thread.

    Hi Bear, we advise anyone under a doctor’s care to do what she says and follow her instructions regarding medicines and dieting. You need to make sure you stay healthy and she will be the one to help you do this.

    Hope you feel better soon.

    Dr recommended a colonoscopy to see if the issue of weight loss was anindication of something else. The result was negative and all clear. Diverticulitis is the issue. The parasite has been removed with antibiotics and now waiting on the report from the procedure. It appears to be reacting to daily doses of Yakult fermeted milk to build up probiotics in the gut and improving with my BM. Still continuing with the fast diet but eating up to my TDEE on eating days and increasing my fibre intake. Thank you all for your input.

    Hi all from Australia, just started the 5:2 – in my 3rd week. Have had diarrhoea-predominant ibs with bloating and serious pain since age 21 after abdominal cancer surgery (I’m 52 now). Also obese with a bmi of 31. So far since starting 5:2 the ibs has been a bit all over the shop but nowhere as bad as “bad days” – personal “worst” is 27 urgent trips to the loo in one evening – left me feeling drained in more ways than one :). Previously tried religious adherence to FODMAP principles – made no discernible difference after almost a year so now try to have a sort of “balanced” diet – not too much of anything. In the first 2 weeks have lost a kg and 2 cm off my ample gut πŸ™‚ and feeling pretty good about this. “Breakfast” on fast days is a couple of eggs or some baked beans on a single slice of dry low gi toast. “Dinner/supper” is a big salad of lettuce/spinach/tomato/carrot followed by a bowl of berries with a dollop of low-fat yoghurt. A couple of self-indulgent coffees with low-fat milk and a little sugar with breakfast and then only lots of water and peppermint tea to drink. Curious to know what other ibs 5:2 people eat on fast days…

    Hi AndrewofCastlemaine. I am on the low FODMAP diet, as I am far better on it, though I still have frequent occasions of being unwell, so it isn’t the be-all, end-all. On my fast days, I have tried a few different things. Firstly I don’t eat in the mornings. Actually I usually go without food until 4.00 or 4.30ish. At this time I snack on: 95g tin tuna with finely chopped capsicum wrapped in 2 lettuce leaves; 110-120g prawns with vinegar; an egg. For dinner I’ll alternate between: 2 egg omelette with chopped tomato & low fodmap vegies or salad, turkey mince (incredibly low in fat)in a pattie (with grated zucchini, carrot, chopped capsicum, part of an egg, and approx. 26g gluten free/dairy free bread, crumbled) with salad. Today I didn’t feel the need for a snack, and saved all my caloried for dinner. I had 2 egg/skim milk scrambled egg with 2 lean slices of rindless shortcut bacon, some grilled tomato and 1 slice of gluten free/dairy free toast. I hope this helps…

    Hi Suze3Blues. Thanks for sharing your diet. I found that a couple of eggs early seems to set me up well. So far I haven’t had an attack on a fast day and only one on the day after – but I put that down to a stressful work day and a 300 km drive home. So far so good…

    I have been intermittent fasting since Aug 2014 when I was really sick. My body would be very stressed out during the morning and it would not simmer down until about mid-late morning – I therefore started to skip breakfast because the thought of eating and feeling so sick did not appeal. So months on my life is so much better for this, I fast from about 7pm at night until lunchtime the following day and at around 1pm I’ll have something relatively simple and light and then dinner at about 6pm. Obviously if I am feeling extremely hungry during these fasting hours I’ll have a small snack but i keep it really light like celery sticks or a corn thin wafer. The longer I do this the more in control I am and the more my body adjusts for the better – I have culled back my meds dramatically and I find the only things that truly set me off are the rare occasions I have gluten or dairy products. I am convinced with this intermittent fasting approach to IBS and just general health

    I am about to start the 5:2 diet, and I am hoping for improvement on the IBS front.
    When I discovered FODMAPs, it was clear that the onion family was the main culprit, and have been avoiding them since, and limiting the pip and stone fruit as well. (I was already lactose intolerant – which is one of the FODMAPs, but that is a different physical problem, my body simply not producing enough lactase; and I can take pills if I want to eat things with lactose in them. No such remedy for the other FODMAPS.)
    I have known one person who has recovered entirely from IBS after 10 years of it, when they got very sick with vomitting and diarrhoea for 3 whole weeks. After that no more IBS, which makes me wonder about gut flora, but also about fasting. I am wondering if a longer fast might give the gut a chance to recover, or let the gut flora recalibrate or something.

    I get no IBS symptoms if I keep away from FODMAPS. I am hoping that after doing these fasts I might be able to eat onion again, or maybe lentils and beans.

    Anyone noticed they can eat previously restricted foods on the :2 diet?

    Hi MiriamNZ,

    I have been doing 5:2 since September 2014, and while I have lost a bit of weight and feel great (while following low fodmap), I have not had any change to my IBS – a little disappointing I have to admit. I will continue 5:2, in fact it’s not too long before I swap to 6:1, but so far no change to my IBSS – drats!!

    Wow I really hope this works!! I need to try this as I have not long been diagnosed and find its ruling my life!

    Can people give me an idea as to what they eat on their fast days as I’m really new to this.

    Thanks πŸ™‚

    Since IBS is different for everyone, its hard to give advice other than one’s own experience. So basically, what I’m going to say, take with a grain of salt. I was diagnosed with IBS-C this past December. I believe mine is related to an overgrowth of bad bacteria. This diet has definitely helped keep things in check, I believe, and actually, this forum is the way I happened upon this diet because one day I was googling ibs relief. In addition, I recently started taking a pretty effective probiotic called Pro-15 advanced strength probiotics. As for fast days, I eat a cucumber and tomato salad with balsamic vinaigrette and a cup of full fat greek yogurt that contains probiotics and half a grapefruit. Good luck! I know that this condition really really sucks.

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