22/05/2017 08:18 BST | Updated 22/05/2017 08:18 BST

IBS: How Your Doctor Could Be Misdiagnosing You

With the end of IBS Awareness Month in April, and the growing research into the importance of gut health we now know much more than we ever did about our guts. Despite this many of us are still not aware of what could really be behind our symptoms.

A staggering 20-25% of the UK population reveal they have suffered symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) at some point in their lives. Whilst many have turned to IBS-prescribed medication in order to relieve themselves from this conditions, these drugs often proved ineffective, suggesting that in many cases there could in fact be an underlying and undiagnosed cause which your GP has failed to spot.

What actually is IBS? Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is defined as a collection of symptoms with no diagnosed condition, including abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhoea and nausea. If you present any of these issues it is likely repeated visits to your GP will have resulted in a host of prescriptions which may include, anti-inflammatories, antibiotics, anti-flatulents, or laxatives to alleviate uncomfortable symptoms. Unfortunately the array of medication on the market does not always resolve the IBS-related symptoms and you may suffer long term sensitivity once the flare up occurs.

What could be the real cause behind your IBS symptoms? There are several issues which can cause IBS symptoms including stress, a gut bacteria imbalance, leaky gut syndrome, poor digestion or a yeast overgrowth like candida. In fact, candida overgrowth is a major, and often unknown, cause behind your IBS symptoms which can be responsible for the development of a leaky gut as the gut wall no longer forms a barrier and starts to allow toxins and food particles to pass into the blood stream.

Now we know that a candida overgrowth could be the reason for our IBS symptoms we need to know what causes this yeast to overpopulate and how best to treat it. Stress, junk food diets, vaccinations and the birth control pill are a number of factors which can result in a candida overgrowth. These factors cannot be controlled by prescribed medication, and therefore require fundamental lifestyle changes to be made. In fact, antibiotics and steroids can actually contribute to candida overgrowth as the good bacteria along with the bad is blasted from your system. Prescribed medication may aggravate your symptoms in the long term, which could explain why your 'IBS' symptoms never seem to get any better.

Therefore if your prescribed medications have proved ineffective now you may know why. In order to treat an overgrowth of candida you need to adopt a holistic naturopathic approach to your diet which in turn will provide many benefits to support long term gut health and wellbeing. I would recommend a naturopathic nutritional programme such as the Candida Diet Foods plan, for more information head to This plan is based on the 5R plan which involves; removing offending foods, replacing digestive support, replenishing with nutrition and repopulating gut bacteria, repairing leaky gut and rebalancing lifestyle, stress and diet issues. Along with diet and lifestyle recommendations, Candida Diet Foods also has a whole host of healthy candida friendly recipes and meal plans to follow, helping you on your journey to improved wellbeing.