For the past few years I’ve been struggling off and on with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
As may of you know it can be an extremely uncomfortable and quite embarrassing condition.
For me, when it’s at its worse I bloat up so horrifically I look like I’m 6 months pregnant.
I’m not saying all those lovely ladies out there who just happen to be 6 months pregnant right at this moment look horrific (in fact my sister, step sister and sister in law are all around 6 months pregnant as I write…). But these ladies have had 6 months to get this big.
It’s taken 6 months.
Not 2 or 3 hours.
Imagine waking up your normal size, eating something, and then 2-3 hours later you’re so stretched you look 6 months pregnant.
Trust me, it hurts.
So, when it first started to happen about 10 years ago I went to the GP.
I was told to cut out all the food I had always eaten and take these disgusting fiber sachets before I ate.
In the appointment I tried to argue it couldn’t be diet related because I’ve always eaten the food I was consuming.
I’m not going to lie, I ignored the doctor and carried on eating what I had always eaten and only tried the fiber things once (they really were disgusting).
My IBS settled down after 6 weeks after seeing the GP so I thought nothing of it.
Little did I know it had nothing to do with my diet – it happened because I was stressed.
This fact I discovered all on my own as I was going through my degree and masters in psychology.
IBS is a symptom of stress and can also be a symptom of anxiety difficulties.
It just so happened that the IBS settling down co-insided with me leaving my highly stressful job and heading into Uni as a mature student.
So, I learned if I was bloating up like a balloon after eating then my body was telling me to change something. Not my diet, but my life.
It still happened from time to time and would continue to affect my life.
I would miss opportunities to go out and eat in restaurants because it was more likely to occur with their rich food.
Yes, there was a food component but when I was chilled I could eat out, and eat takeaways with no problem. If I was stressed however…
Now though, I don’t need to worry.
I’m stressed quite a lot at the moment with running my own business but it really doesn’t matter because I haven’t had a bout of IBS in the past 12 months.
Well, except one day when I forgot to do what I was supposed to do.
Yeah, you guessed it – use the lemon essential oil to keep it at bay!
Simply by having a glass of lemon water first thing in the morning I have been able to eat whatever I want -regardless of being stressed to the hilt and not have to suffer for it.
I just put 1 drop into a glass of hot water, or 2 drops into a pint of cold water.
Sometimes I add the lemon to my cup of tea, and if I’m in a rush (or I’ve been lazy and slept in…) I’ll throw a couple of drops into a vegetable capsule & swallow it as I’m going out the door.
Either seems to work fine for me and this is great because it enables me to switch things up depending on how I’m feeling.
Now, for me internal use has been the most effective and lemon is my go to oil because I know my IBS is stress related and lemon is great at de-stressing, and uplifting. It’s also a great detoxifier and system cleanser. On a side note – the lemon in a glass of water has also helped clear up my acne quite a lot.
There is some research saying you should have a glass of lemon water 20 mins before every meal to help – but I haven’t needed to do that.
There’s also other oils which can really help IBS – especially if you’rs is food or digestive related not stress related.
So, you can try rubbing a couple of drops of peppermint on your stomach, or take a couple of drops internally, if you struggle with lactose intolerance or celiac disease.
Rosemary is fantastic if you get really constipated and this makes you bloat up. If this happens to me I just rub a couple of drops on my stomach. A note of caution – you may want to do this at home, in private because it does make you fart – a lot! But it’s great at getting your bowels moving and back in tip-top condition.
There’s also blends of oils which do wonders. One such digestive blend is a combination of; ginger, peppermint, tarragon, fennel, caraway., corriander and anise – all of which are great at supporting the digestive system.
So, that’s how I keep my IBS at bay if you’re struggling then why not give it a try!
Oh, yes you can use a lemon slice in water as well but it may not be as effective simply due to the concentration of lemon in the oil compared to the slice.
Have an awesome day & I’ll be back on Tuesday with another Essential Oil Close Up and this time we’ll look at wild orange.
p.s. If you’re open to learning how to use essential oils to do loads of other neat things and support your body and mind with everything it gets up to then click the link below to go to a free mini-wellness consult
- It’s important to seek the advice of a professional before embarking on a new health regime.
- These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
- This website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
- Essential Oils are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease
- Not all essential oils are of the same quality and it’s important you check with your oil brand whether you can use your oils aromatically (A), topically (T) and/or internally (I).