This new drug is being applauded because about 30 percent of the patients in the clinical trials experienced improvement in their symptoms about half of the time they took the drug.
But is this necessarily cause for celebration? Let’s look a little closer.
First of all, the drug was only effective half of the time…meaning the other half of the time it was completely bloody ineffective.
And although 30 percent of the IBS sufferers reported improvement with the drug, 20 percent of the participants taking a placebo reported improvement!
In addition, Viberzi is only designed for IBS patients whose predominant symptom is diarrhea.
Well, there are actually three different types of IBS:
IBS-C—where constipation is the predominant symptom
IBS-D—where diarrhea is the primary symptom
IBS-M—where you suffer a mixture of diarrhea and constipation
So this drug only applies to about one-third of IBS sufferers.
But wait….there’s more
The most concerning aspect of Viberzi is its potential side effects.
Common side effects are nausea, constipation and abdominal pain—which happen to be common IBS symptoms!
Plus you run the risk of developing pancreatitis—an inflammation where your pancreatic enzymes actually start digesting your pancreas.
Pancreatitis can be fatal if it becomes chronic.
But hey, at least your diarrhea will go away half of the time.
How to really help with IBS
IBS has been labeled a “functional disorder” meaning there is no disease process present.
Well, what IS present with IBS is gas, bloating, abdominal pain, constipation and/or diarrhea—all signs that your digestion is not being carried out like it should be.
So if you help your body accomplish digestion the way it’s supposed to, you can feel tremendous relief!
Here are some of the most common “digestion destroyers” and how you can help turn them around:
The Standard American Diet
People who have a typical modern diet are most definitely eating very little fiber, truckloads of processed foods and meals that are next-to-impossible for their bodies to digest efficiently.
If your system cannot break down your foods like it's supposed to, it's just a matter of time before your body begins to revolt.
Help your digestion along by eating simpler meals. Pair meats OR starches (not both) with vegetables and a green salad, while avoiding the protein-starch combination in your meals. Proteins and starches require opposing digestive enzymes and when eaten together these catalysts can weaken each other in the stomach and impair digestion.
Also probiotics and digestive enzyme supplements have been shown to be a big help in smoothing out digestion.
Probiotics provide a helpful dose of friendly bacteria which breaks down starches and fiber, thereby helping to reduce gas and bloating.
Digestive enzymes can pinch hit where your body may be lacking in enzyme support. (This is common among the elderly, people using acid reducers and people who have had gastric surgery.)
Food allergies and sensitivities
Many people have food allergies or sensitivities and don’t even know it...all they know is that they’re suffering with very frequent pain, gas, bloating and diarrhea (typical IBS symptoms).
True food allergies are easier to detect because you usually get symptoms quickly after eating the offending food, and oftentimes suffer a rash or other reaction.
But food sensitivities are sneakier. You won’t necessary get symptoms right away—it might take you up to 72 hours to feel the effects, and at that point, you’re clueless as to what may have triggered your attack.
Be sure to get appropriate testing for both allergies and sensitivities if you suspect these may be affecting you.
Stress most assuredly can compromise your digestion. Your mind and GI tract are connected through a series of impulse pathways called the "brain-gut axis" and what affects one affects the other.
Do what you need to do to relieve stress—keeping in mind the best form of stress relief is regular exercise! Just be sure to get your doctor’s OK before beginning an exercise program.
In addition to the GI symptoms caused by Viberzi above, many other medications can ruin your digestion including:
- Acid reducers and antacids (how’s that for a kicker?)
- Pain relievers/NSAIDs
- High blood pressure medications
- Cholesterol medications
And it’s quite possible that if you improve your diet like I described above, you may not need as much medication to begin with!
Come on over!
I speak with great authority about IBS…because I used to suffer from it.
I suffered from IBS for 15 years, but have been completely symptom-free for the last 24 years solely due to my diet, improved digestion and probiotic supplementation.
I will never forget all of the horrible suffering I endured with IBS, and trust me, life is very sweet indeed when you can finally close the door on it.
Come on over and see how great you can feel.