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Food & Recipes

Special Events

Rx News & Research

Ask Heather ~ Snacks for IBS

About Us



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January 26, 2005

This week - Snacks for IBS

Hello to everyone -

This week we continue our special "Getting Started with IBS" theme, with a focus on fast and easy ways to mainstain stability once you've broken the cycle of IBS attacks. We have a delicious recipe that shows you just how to expand your diet and (carefully!) add insoluble fiber to a soluble fiber foundation.

If you missed last week's special event, here's your chance to get a copy of the brand new Heather's IBS Cheat Sheet that's made just for downloading and saving onto your desktop for instant entry into the full HelpForIBS.com community, sharing with anyone else who needs it, and for printing out for easy reference.

As always, we've also got the latest IBS news and research. Enjoy!

Best Wishes,
Heather Van Vorous

Did a friend send you this newsletter? Sign up here for your own free subscription. divider

Lemon Asparagus Pasta

Makes 4 servings

1 lb. fresh asparagus, ends trimmed
zest (grated yellow skin) of 1 fresh lemon
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb. bowtie pasta (or pasta or choice)
1/4 cup soy Parmesan cheese (optional)

Cut asparagus into 1 inch pieces, setting aside tips. In a large stockpot cook asparagus stems in 5-6 quarts boiling water with 1 tablespoon salt until very tender (about 7-9 minutes). Transfer asparagus with a slotted spoon to a blender (do not drain pot). Cook asparagus tips in same boiling water until just tender, about 4-5 minutes. Transfer tips with slotted spoon to colander (do not drain pot).

Puree asparagus stems (not the tips) with lemon zest, olive oil, and 3/4 cup asparagus cooking water until smooth.

Cook pasta in boiling asparagus cooking water until it's still very al dente (firm to the tooth). Reserve 2 cups cooking water and drain pasta. In drained stockpot, add pasta, asparagus tips, asparagus sauce, and 1/2 cup reserved water. Cook over high heat, stirring, about 4-5 minutes until pasta is done to taste and coated with sauce, adding a little more cooking water (1/4 cup at a time) if necessary. Stir in soy Parmesan and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

For oodles of other delicious recipes, come visit the IBS Recipe Exchange board!

Are you just learning how to eat for IBS? A little intimidated at the thought of special IBS recipes? Not quite sure just what makes these recipes special in the first place? Don't worry! Come see the IBS Diet pages, and find the answers to all your questions.

IBS Diet Kit 2
Try the IBS Diet Kit #2 - it's 20% off full price!


Here's the immediate, tangible help you need to take control of your IBS symptoms through diet! Includes the book Eating for IBS, Acacia Tummy Fiber, and Peppermint Oil Capsules. Normalize both constipation and diarrhea, reduce bloating & gas, and prevent painful spasms!

divider Tsunami Relief
HelpForIBS.com is grateful to be able to help promote a fund-raising CD called AID - Asia In Distress. The CD has been developed and co-ordinated by Michael Mahoney, whom many of you know as an IBS hypnotherapist and the author of the IBS Audio Program 100.

"This CD is unique in that it brings together four distinct tracks, which I hope will provide something for almost everyone," said Mahoney. "After seeing the events unfold it was clear I had to help."

"We have brought together a team of experienced professionals, from many different companies and backgrounds both in the UK and USA, who have helped to make this CD possible. Musicians, sound engineers, CD duplicators, composers, graphic artists, packaging companies, school children for chorus backing, administration people and many others have contributed to its development and promotion."

The CD is meant to not only raise money for disaster relief, but also to bring the listener new information and understanding about this tsunami, provide guided relaxation to help mind and body along, and give spiritual uplifting and music for the listener to relax to in their own way.

Everyone who participated in the making and promotion of the CD donated all of their time and resources, and all profits from sales of the CD will go directly to the UK Disaster Emergency Committee and to Doctors Without Borders.
divider Dietary Fat, Fiber, and Heartburn
A recent study in Gut shows that a high dietary fat intake was associated with an increased risk of acid reflux, while a high fiber intake correlated with a reduced risk of heartburn symptoms. Go here for more information about this study...

Alternative Medicine Use by Patients With GI Diseases
A recent Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology study found that the incidence of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) was 49.5% for inflammatory bowel disease, 50.9% for irritable bowel syndrome, 20% for general gastrointestinal diseases, and 27% for controls. Females were more likely to take CAM than men. The study concluded that increasing numbers of GI patients are using CAM in addition to conventional therapy, and that awareness of this may prevent adverse CAM and conventional drug interactions. Go here for more information about this study...

Looking for safe and healthy non-drug supplements for IBS? Learn about them here.


Ten to Twenty Percent of Older Adults have IBS
Although only about 10% of IBS patients are diagnosed after age 60, a recent article in Geriatrics suggests that IBS affects 10-20% of older adults. IBS is traditionally considered to be a condition that primarily affects young and middle-aged adults. However, increasing evidence suggests that prevalence of IBS in older adults may be similar to that in younger adults; therefore, the diagnosis should be considered when a geriatric patient presents with unexplained abdominal symptoms. Go here for more information about this study...

Red Meat Consumption Linked to Colorectal Cancer
Long-term high consumption of red and processed meat may increase the risk of cancer in the distal colon and rectum, according to a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association for January 12th. Dr. Michael J. Thun, with the American Cancer Society in Atlanta, and colleagues followed a cohort of 148,610 adults, median age 63 years, who completed questionnaires in 1982 and again between 1992 and 1993 regarding their diet, exercise, medical history and other lifestyle habits. Regarding the association between meat consumption and colorectal cancer, the study authors stated, "prudence would suggest that red meat, and processed meats in particular, should be eaten sparingly to minimize risk." Go here for more information about this study...

Looking for comprehensive IBS research and news?
Check here in the IBS Research Library!


IBS Peppermint Caps
Peppermint Oil Caps Are Amazing!

I think Peppermint Oil Caps are truly unbeatable for abdominal spasms, cramps and pain. Our caps also have fennel and ginger oils, for extra digestive benefits!

divider Snacks for IBS
"I don't have much time to cook. What are my options for snacks and for fast and easy meals now that I've broken the cycle?" ~ Bryan Johns, Venice, California

If you've been following along from the last IBS newsletter, you learned that the goal of breaking the cycle of IBS is to gently force your gut's motility into a normal pattern. A terrific way to break the cycle of IBS for all symptoms, and stabilize your gut motility quickly, is to really restrict your diet for a few days (and only a few days - this is a short-term diet only) to nothing but soluble fiber foods and start using a soluble fiber supplement.

But once you've followed the "breaking the cycle" diet and have stabilized, you do need to expand your diet (carefully!) to include more insoluble fiber and a wider variety of foods. If you have time for some quick cooking, the Lemon Asparagus Pasta recipe above is a good example of how to add insoluble fiber (asparagus) into a soluble fiber (pasta) foundation. So are many of the recipes from Eating for IBS and the IBS Recipe Exchange.

Eating small meals and snacks is actually very important for people with IBS, because it's better for your gut to have small amounts of food frequently rather than going hours between large meals. Since there are many safe and wonderful treats to snack on, this can be a lot of fun, too.

For snacks in just minutes, use toasted fresh white bread, baked corn chips, soda crackers, and pitas as a soluble fiber basis for low fat dips, salsas, soups, and more. Baked potato chips, pretzels, soy crisps, rice cakes, corn or rice cereals, and instant oatmeal packets are fast, safe snack foods when you're on the run.

There are two terrific resources on our website that are absolutely essential for snack ideas. The first is a list of Snacks, Quick Foods, and Good Grub to Grab in a Hurry, and includes snacks, cereals, bars, drinks, and more. This is the first place to look if you're hungry but at a loss for snack ideas. The second resource is our comprehensive list of Brand Name Recommendations for IBS-Safe Foods. This list is organized by country, and includes everything from ready-to-eat meals to soups, dairy substitutes, cookies, candies, and more.

Even when you're in a hurry you can still eat safely (and nutritiously) for IBS, and use snacks to your advantage to help keep your gut stable throughout the day. So go ahead - spoil your appetite for a big heavy dinner. Your tummy will only thank you!

~ Heather

P.S. Are you worried about unwittingly sabotaging your newfound stability? Here are the highly popular Seven Sneaky Sins of the IBS Diet. Learn exactly how to avoid the most common pitfalls and stay on safe ground once you've gotten there!

Heather's Tummy Store for IBS
Shop at Heather's Tummy Store for IBS

The only store that's just for IBS - so we only carry the very best

divider Heather & Company for IBS, LLC is dedicated to serving people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Our mission is to provide education, support, and products that allow people with IBS to successfully manage their symptoms through lifestyle modifications.

We offer extensive information and tangible help for IBS, including the world's best-selling and best-reviewed books for the disorder. We provide the internet's top IBS web site resources; a twice-monthly IBS Newsletter; seminars and classes; dietary brochures for patient distribution by health care professionals; an IBS Research Library; and Heather Cooks!, a healthy cooking show on Seattle television. Much of our work is based on Heather's development of the first and only comprehensive IBS dietary guidelines and recipes, an achievement which has earned numerous awards and accolades as well as thousands of thank you letters from IBS sufferers.

Heather & Company also provides the only patient-expert moderated IBS Message Boards on the internet with forums for diet, recipes, hypnotherapy, yoga, plus Crohn's and Colitis. In addition, we support and coordinate the formation and continuation of local in-person IBS support groups across the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand. We will soon have other IBS services and products available.

Our website receives nearly 3 million visits each year, and our newsletter is sent to over 31,000 people. We are regular exhibitors at the Digestive Disease Week and American Dietetic Association conferences.

Sponsorship opportunities are available for the message boards and this newsletter for companies and/or products that have been legitimately established as helpful for digestive disorders. Please contact us for information.
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LEGAL DISCLAIMER - This email is not intended to replace the services of a physician, nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Any application of the recommendations in this email is at the reader's discretion. Heather Van Vorous and Heather & Company for IBS, LLC are not liable for any direct or indirect claim, loss or damage resulting from use of this email and/or any web site(s) linked to/from it. Readers should consult their own physicians concerning the recommendations in this email.

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