The best exercise for IBS, according to an intestinal doctor

IIf we were the matchmakers who made the connection between the social media trends that we thought would go well together, this summer, the energy that we would be rooting for would be the couple – the irritable gut girl, Ahem, the movement on TikTok and the #HotGirlWalk hashtag Instagram. Together, they not only raised awareness about the prevalence of IBS in young women, but also motivated anyone falling into the irritating bowel syndrome spectrum to engage in one of the best exercises for their IBS: walking.

“If you have a chronic gastrointestinal disorder, such as irritable bowel syndrome, exercise can be a great way to maintain overall health, encourage your intestinal muscles to behave more predictably and help you digest better,” says Erin Hendricks. , A physician and practitioner of effective medicine at the Intestinal Health-Centered Virtual Health Clinic, Salvo Health. “The best type of exercise for people with IBS is low to medium level aerobic exercise that avoids any sudden movement that can trigger symptoms.”

Dr. Hendricks explains that there are many aspects of low-impact exercise that can help people with IBS in particular. Indeed, research shows that “when IBS patients increase their level of physical activity, they typically reap rewards in the form of good health and IBS symptom management.”

The benefits of low-impact aerobic exercise for people with IBS

  1. Calming stress, which can reduce IBS symptoms since gastrointestinal problems are associated with stress.
  2. Promote a good night’s sleep, which prevents flare-ups.
  3. It has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which can reduce systemic inflammation and improve the symptoms of IBS.

In addition to walking, other examples of low-impact exercises include cycling, pilates or swimming. Dr. Hendricks specifically recommends hiking, as the soothing effects of staying in nature with exercise will play a double role in reducing stress. When engaging in low-to-medium impact exercises, your breathing should be faster, but you will still be able to communicate.

People with IBS should avoid exercise

“Not every type of aerial activity is suitable for IBS,” says Dr. Hendricks. “Some types of exercise are very abrupt, with too much jumping or larching speed that can upset your gastrointestinal system and potentially make your abdominal pain, cramping, bloating and other symptoms worse.”

Dr. Hendricks generally advises avoiding covert activities such as crossfit, long distance running, HIIT and fast martial arts. But he says that if you are enthusiastic about this type of exercise, you can always change the activity. For example, in a HIIT class, change the jump squats to squats by raising the heels. Or if you love to run, look for paths that have less impact on your body than sidewalks, such as trails or grass, or run at a slower pace.

Here’s a low-impact HIIT workout you’ll want to add to the mix:

Overall, Dr. Hendrix says people should not confuse low-impact aerial activity for simple activity – it can still be high-intensity. This means you are doing exercises that are best for your specific body. “Being kind to yourself but consistent in taking care of your fitness helps both your IBS and your overall lifestyle,” she says.

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