Does fatty food impact IBS symptoms?


Does anyone out there think their IBS symptoms worsen after fatty foods?

There's some observational studies that do suggest that dietary fat can trigger IBS symptoms in some people. In a recent survey it was found that more than 40% of IBS sufferers reported symptoms after fatty foods like pizza, ice cream and deep-fried foods. 

We do know that people with IBS have oversensitive nerves in the gastrointestinal tract which respond by sending messages to the brain that body is in pain. Fat also can have an effect on gas retention in people with IBS. These symptoms can be amplified in those who get bloating because the body is only moving the gas through the system very slowly.   

There however haven't been any high quality studies which show that having a reduced fat diet would assist in the management of IBS. For this reason, following a restricted fat diet is not routinely recommended in the management of IBS.   

If you feel that you get symptoms after eating a fatty or rich meal and usually have a quite high fat diet, a fat restriction may assist you. You can spread out your fat over the day to reduce the load all at one meal or swap fatty foods with lower fat alternatives. However this decision should be made after seeing and consulting with a dietitian to ensure that you are not going to impact your fat-soluble vitamin intake and that you are not at risk of malnutrition.