IBS – Diarrhoea Dominant - Take Back Control

IBS – Diarrhoea Dominant - Take Back Control The Gut Clinic Sara Knight Naturopath Newcastle Herbalist New Lambton

Of the types of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), the diarrhoea dominant form (ie IBS-D) can have the biggest impact on a person’s day to day life. Equally so, I usually see the quickest results with naturopathic treatment.


Besides the hallmark feature of frequent loose and/or urgent stools, the other symptoms include:

  • Pain and discomfort
  • Gas or wind
  • Nausea
  • Incomplete evacuation – more to come, but nothing


In my experience, IBS-D is usually due to one or more of the following:

  1. All forms of IBS have a mind component via the gut-brain axis. In this form. stress especially if the person tends to a more anxiety type of reaction to stress (raising my hand now) is common.
  2. Food – the body’s reaction seems to be one of “get it out, get it out right now!” to many foods
  3. Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth (SIBO) should also be considered.
  4. Pathogens and thryoid, especially high or hyper,  dysfunction should also be considered.


The impact to the person can be quite significant. There is the day to day impact of having to know where are all toilets are at any time to simply avoiding going out for fear of an accident.

If the fear and isolation is not enough, then the fatigue starts. The foods are not able to be broken down and absorbed so the body is simply not getting the energy and nutrients it needs. Fatigue and brain fog are common. Symptoms can then escalate to weight loss, poor immunity, muscle wastage, etc. Mood starts to become low if not dark.


My priorities for working with someone with IBS-D are:

  1. Stop the diarrhoea. My clients need to regain some control of their life. They also need to digest and absorb their food. I commonly use saccharomyces boulardii, a probiotic yeast that is brilliant for stopping diarrhoea as well gut healing
  2. Tweak the diet to include compatible foods, based on intolerance testing, and nutrient dense foods. We need to start replenishing the nutrient reserves so energy levels can bounce back. I may also use key supplements, such as B vitamin complex, to help this process along.
  3. Stress management – using yoga, meditation, appropriate body movement and revising the internal dialogue can all help calm the mind so the gut can follow. I often use calming and restorative herbs to help restore a peaceful and relaxed gut and mind.

This may seem straightforward if not simple. Many times it is – my client’s tell me they feel better within days and start to feel in control again. They get their life back. Sometimes, especially when stress the key driving component, it may take a bit longer and need the help of a counsellor or hypnotherapist.

All of these steps mean a person knows how to manage their IBS-D, and stop the IBS controlling them.

If you are ready to improve your gut health and take back your control, let’s get started. Book an appointment with me now. You'll find my clinic at New Lambton in Newcastle, NSW.