Does Hot Weather Affect IBS?
Tip Takeaway: Muggy summer days make IBS worse, and ongoing heat/humidity make it difficult to get and stay stable. Do everything you can to keep cool!
Yes! Weather can affect the frequency and severity of all IBS symptoms.
- Hot, humid weather physically stresses your body. Air pressure changes from humidity affect your serotonin levels. Over 90% of that serotonin is in your gut, and it plays a major role in IBS.
- Humidity's effects on gut serotonin also reduce your pain tolerance level - a double whammy, because people with IBS have a lower threshold for gut pain in the first place.
- So what can you do? Try everything possible to keep your home cool and breezy, especially your bedroom, so you sleep well at night.
- Take cool showers or baths to lower your body temperature.
- Be extra careful with your diet. Now is not the time to splurge. If you're struggling, stick to the safe foods list and "what to eat when you can't eat anything."
- Can't beat the heat? Escape to air conditioned public places like movie theaters, libraries, cafes, or malls - the chillier the better.
- Limit time outside to cool mornings and evenings. Drink lots of cool liquids, especially helpful herbal teas like peppermint and fennel, throughout the day.
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