Could gravity be the root cause of IBS?

Gravity is a tremendous force that draws everything to the ground, but might it also be the root cause of Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Gravity linked to IBSThat was the fascinating notion in a recent 'American Journal of Gastroenterology' article. Brennan Spiegel, a professor of medicine and public health at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in Los Angeles, believes that the body's failure to handle gravity may explain why some people get IBS symptoms such as stomach discomfort, diarrhoea, and bloating.

Professor Spiegel refers to his study as a "thought experiment" since it is founded on facts and past research on the physiological effects of gravity on the human body. ‘Gravity is a force so fundamental that we rarely note its constant influence on our health,’ Professor Spiegel said recently in an article. Our intestines, spine, heart, nerves and brain have evolved to manage gravity — but they can fail.' For example, gravity's compressive influence on our spine might gradually diminish our flexibility. Professor Spiegel contends that his gravity hypothesis validates other IBS theories. Gravity can force organs to move downhill and away from their natural location.

The professor has said that since publishing his “gravity hypothesis”, he has received feedback from patients sharing how the ideas seem to align with their lived experience. Some have described how practising inverted yoga postures or doing exercises that work the pelvic floor and strengthen their core reduce symptoms. Whilst others describe how flying, scuba diving, riding rollercoasters, or swinging on swings triggers symptoms!


What is the real cause of IBS?

Whilst the professor's concept is intriguing, doctors still don't know what causes IBS. Everyone is affected by gravity, yet not everyone develops IBS. It's most likely a mix of causes, and various factors might induce IBS in different people.

Certain problems are more common in people with IBS. Experts think these problems may play a role in causing IBS. These problems include, but not limited to:

+ Food intolerances or sensitivities, in which certain foods cause digestive symptoms

+ Stress, Depression & Anxiety

+ Higher concentration of mast cells in their intestines compared to non-sufferers

+ Sleep problems

+ Bacterial infections in your digestive tract

+ Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, an increase in the number or a change in the type of bacteria in your small intestine

Since publishing his study, Professor Spiegel believes that more research is needed, but the scepticism has been far less than he thought!

Whatever the source of your IBS, managing it is likely to include a combination of measures such as dietary adjustments, stress-reduction activities, as well as taking food supplements.

IBS Advanced Formula +

Our IBS Advanced Formula + food supplement includes Quercetin which is proven to stabilise the membranes of mast cells. It reduces the release of histamine, helping to mitigate some of the more distressing symptoms of IBS. It also includes the natural plants extracts Theanine (from green tea) and Curcumin (from turmeric). Theanine may help to alleviate stress, depression and anxiety which otherwise may exacerbate the symptoms of IBS. It has also been shown to calm hyperactivity of the intestines. CavaCurmin is made from the main active ingredient in Turmeric, known for its anti-inflammatory benefits which may help to support a healthy gut and reduce the bloating caused by inflammation.

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