How Do People With IBS Survive Christmas?


It’s officially December and the festive season is here! For a lot of IBS sufferers, Christmas can be a daunting time. There is a lot of stress around this period, not to mention, many different foods and a variety of meals to think about. In this article, we will be looking at how people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome survive the Christmas season, and give you our top tips for how to get through it. 

1. Plan Your Meals Ahead

Whether you are eating at home or going out for a Christmas meal, it’s important to plan ahead when you have IBS.  To avoid getting any of those nasty Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms, you can stock up on your medication, or any foods you consider ‘safe’, and won’t cause any triggers. We recommend having a good amount of IBS-friendly table condiments and cooking sauces on board so that you steer clear of any bloating, or painful stomach problems. 

2. Know Your Symptoms

Another good top tip is getting to know your symptoms. Understanding your food triggers, and what makes you feel ill is vital when it comes to enjoying the festive season. Stick to low FODMAP foods, and keep to meals that you know will make your stomach happy. Did you know that Christmas classics such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Christmas puddings, and mince pies can all set off IBS? Also, garlic and onion can be present in many festive favourites - we recommend checking all labels before consuming your feast. Also, stay away from high-fat sauces. Here at Deliciously Different Foods, we specialise in making IBS-friendly sauces that won’t be out of place on your Christmas table and will make sure symptoms stay at bay. 

3. Drink Plenty Of Water

Don’t forget the water! Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will keep your stomach feeling good, and will ensure your digestive system keeps moving. We also suggest going easy on the alcohol - this doesn’t mean you need to skip out on your morning Bucks Fizz, or your Christmas glass of Champagne, but why not try having water in between? Also, caffeine should be avoided too. Coffee and other caffeinated drinks can create a spasmodic effect on the gut, which can increase some IBS-related symptoms such as diarrhoea. 

4. Avoid Festive Stress - If Possible!

Finally, easier said than done, but avoid the festive stress if you can! Stress can worsen abdominal cramps, general pain, or discomfort. Try taking it slower around the Christmas season is a must - there will be more people around, and a lot more to do so it’s important that you take time for yourself and prioritise relaxing.  Aim to minimise stress levels by practising mindfulness and relaxation techniques.

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