It was back in 2014 when I took my first Hydrogen breath test to see if I had SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth) or not. And sure enough I was positive for both Hydrogen & Methane gases.
I immediately started to treat and eradicate my SIBO by following Dr. Jacobi’s Bi-Phasic diet. During my herbal treatment, I noticed instant results. My skin began to improve (SIBO and acne rosacea are linked- and the initial reason for testing), my bloating decreased and my bowel motion improved.
Looking back on the determination in following the diet and finally knowing the cause of my acne rosacea was the end of years of frustration and embarrassment.
If you have ever had to follow a restricted diet you will understand how difficult it is to live a ‘normal’ life that doesn’t impact you and the ones you life with.
But considering my main problem had been eradicated, I began to slowly add the foods in that I was eating previously (It is also strongly advised that you should not follow any restricted diet long term).
Low and behold…..my skin didn’t get effected!!!
Sure, the obvious items would cause a flare, such as alcohol and wheat. But I had never had an issue with onions or any other high FODMAP foods.
But slowly over time, even though my skin never returned back to its acne state (thank goodness!), my bloating returned and my bowels also decided to slow down too…….
Bring in test number 2 in 2017. And yep, I tested positive yet again for both Hydrogen and Methane gases. SIBO was back with even more bite!!
So what did I do???
I certainly felt disheartened with a capital D, but after treating so many others for SIBO in my practice I had noticed a trend…….
it comes back!
Knowing the cause of your SIBO is imperative!
The thing about SIBO is that you need to find the cause, and if you don’t find the cause, it WILL come back.
What’s my cause?
Most likely poor gut motility and a leaky gut to match.
But I didn’t want to go in with the big guns (anti microbial herbs) to get rid of the unwanted bacteria and Archea. It didn’t want to go on the super restricted diet for months on end.
By this stage I had a fair idea of what would cause my bloating. I mentioned a couple of them previously- wheat and alcohol. You can add potatoes, rice and refined sugars onto that list too. But do I avoid them? No. I just know that I should keep potatoes down to once per week and if I am going to eat wheat, it will be with good quality sourdough stuff.
And what about legumes?
Yes, they can cause havoc with SIBO and make anyone look 6 months pregnant in seconds. But once again, I have identified the ones that cause more symptoms than others (for me it’s kidney beans and chickpeas).
But I still eat them, because I know how beneficial they are for me and they provide fuel for all of the anti-inflammatory bacteria that live in your colon.
And I have also noticed that by keeping my fibre up that my bowel habits improve (it’s not rocket science!).
So lets go back to the cause again…..
The cause of your SIBO is a big clue if you are going to get rid of SIBO once and for all. Unfortunately for some, the cause can be due to adhesions and scar tissue in the pelvic region due to past operations. Constant visceral manipulation is required to reduce the scar tissue within the area. With this comes a very long time frame of healing…….
I discovered that I also have umbilical hernia (another causative factor for SIBO). But after I had met with a surgeon and understood what was involved in the operation, I decided to not go ahead. I felt that the scar tissue post op was going to be far worse than my little sticky outy belly button.
So its not all doom and gloom, and I certainly don’t want to put you off in treating your SIBO. For some, it can be a simple cause such as post infectious IBS (just a little bit of gut dysbiosis and a teeny bit of inflammation). But the main take home point is that EVERYONE is different. And yes, it’s worth exploring what is causing your unwanted gut symptoms and take the necessary treatment from there.
I just felt that I wanted to share my journey with living with SIBO. I have accepted it (that doesn’t mean you should have to too). But I do know that my overall gut microbiome is a lot happier and healthier by me including a high variety of foods into my daily diet.
I also keep my symptoms down by adding movement into my life (yoga) and by keeping on top of my stress levels by ensuring my nervous system is supported and making sure my cup is always full (well 3/4 anyway!)…..
If you would like to listen more about my SIBO story, you can on The GUT GURU podcast.
If you would like support in your gut journey, you can by joining the FB group- Happy gut, Happy you
Do you still have a question?
Send me a message below…..