Beyond the Fodmaps Diet: How Naturopaths Treat the Functional Issues Causing IBS

  • Tara Andresen

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If you're someone who suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), you are not alone. Millions of people around the world experience the symptoms of IBS, including bloating, abdominal pain, and bowel irregularities. The good news is that naturopathic medicine has a unique approach to treating IBS that can help you get to the root cause of your symptoms and find lasting relief.

At NDcare, our mission is to help you feel your best, all the time. We believe that the key to achieving optimal health is to address the underlying functional issues that contribute to your symptoms. So, let's take a closer look at some of the functional gut issues that can cause IBS and how naturopaths can help.

SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth)

SIBO is a condition in which there is an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. This can lead to a variety of symptoms, including bloating, abdominal pain, gas, constipation and diarrhea. To confirm a SIBO diagnosis, Naturopaths order gastrointestinal lab tests including the SIBO Breath Test and then if positive treat SIBO using specific herbal formulas to reduce bacteria levels. 


Dysbiosis is a condition in which the large intestine overgrows 'bad' bacteria. This can lead to a variety of symptoms, including gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation and stomach. To properly assess dysbiosis in the large intestine, your Naturopath may order a Microbiology Stool Culture, which is a specialized gastrointestinal test. This test will identify which bacteria is overgrown and is instrumental in directing treatment with strong herbal formulas and in some cases, specific antibiotics.


Hypochlorhydria is a condition in which there is a low level of stomach acid. This can lead to a variety of symptoms, including bloating, gas, and indigestion. Naturopaths can help treat hypochlorhydria by using a combination of dietary changes, supplements, and herbal remedies designed to increase acid secretion in the stomach.

Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency

Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency is a condition in which the pancreas does not produce enough digestive enzymes. This can lead to a variety of symptoms, including bloating, gas, and diarrhea. To diagnose pancreatic insufficiency, your Naturopath may order the elastase stool test to asses for pancreatic insufficiency, which will better direct treatment. Treating EPI involves replacing depleted enzymes to help break down food.

There are many functional gut issues that can contribute to the symptoms of IBS. Naturopaths take a holistic approach to treating IBS by addressing the underlying causes of your symptoms. 

So, if you're looking for a natural and effective way to treat your IBS, consider visiting NDcare, your trusted Naturopath in Toronto.

Get in touch with NDcare today!

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