“It’s drastic. The symptoms are sometimes constant. There’s diarrhea and abdominal pain or constipation and bloating. I can’t commit to anything too far in advance or anything that is regularly occurring. It greatly affects my life…” IBS Sufferer
Unlike most people who have occasionally experienced abdominal discomfort after eating various foods or overindulging at a special occasion meal, IBS sufferers who chronically experience symptoms of bloating, gas, constipation and diarrhea may find that every part of their life gets disrupted, from work productivity and career advancement to close relationships with others. They may find themselves spending more time alone, limiting commitments, or withdrawing from activities. Excessive focus on symptoms can lead to feelings of anxiety and confusion around food choices, making meal times a stressful experience. The chronic pain and discomfort that many sufferers experience can take an emotional toll causing fatigue, headaches, mood swings, low self-esteem, depression, fear of the future and an inability to focus, all of which exacerbate IBS symptoms. Coming out of this vicious cycle can often be confusing and frustrating. Treatment of this condition requires an individualized approach, much time, patience and self-awareness.
Some Facts about IBS
In Canada, it’s estimated that as many as 20% of the population has IBS and three times more women than men experience symptoms. During a woman’s menstrual period, she may experience increased symptoms.1 According to the International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, prevalence rates of IBS worldwide are anywhere between 9% and 23% and in the US between 10-15% of the population and it accounts for 20-40% of all visits to gastroenterologists.2
What Causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
IBS is considered a functional disorder: tests done on the colon of an IBS sufferer usually reveal no signs of abnormality, disease, or structural damage, though some tenderness may be present. However, the exact cause of IBS is unknown. It is thought to result from a disruption in the way that the gut, brain and nervous system interact—the “gut-brain axis,” causing changes in bowel movement as well as abdominal pain or cramping. This has led researchers to conclude that people with IBS generally have “overly reactive and/or extra-sensitive nerves that control muscles in the bowel.”3
Various triggers for IBS are thought to be hormones, emotional trauma,chronic stressful life events, bacterial infection, antibiotic use, and food sensitivities. For people with very sensitive colons, any of these factors can trigger spasms or cramps in the colon muscle during the process of digestion. When the passage of food is slowed down through the intestine, these spasms can cause constipation or they may cause food to pass too quickly resulting in diarrhea. 4 The important thing to note about this disorder is a heightened sensitivity of the bowel to internal and external stressors.
The “Second Brain” in Our Gut
Scientists have discovered that embedded in the lining of our digestive tract are sheaths of neurons, estimated at 100 million, more than in either the spinal cord or the peripheral nervous system, the part of our nervous system that enervates the organs, limbs and skin. This neural tissue that scientists have referred to as the “second brain” is filled with 30 different neurotransmitters, similar to the brain and 95% of the body’s serotonin is found in the bowels. Working in connection with our brain, our gut is partly responsible for our mental state as well as our emotions. Anyone who has given a talk to a roomful of people has experienced the fluttering sensations in the stomach signaling a combination of fear and excitement.
A long, cable-like visceral nerve, called the vagus, connects the gut to the brain and surprisingly, researchers have discovered that close to 90 percent of the fibers in the vagus nerve are communicating information from the gut to the brain. 5
How Stress Affects Digestion
How we respond to stress has very much to do with how we experience and interact with our environment. Our nervous system uses various strategies to regulate itself and to keep us safe from danger. Safety is the number one priority. According to Stephen Porges, a Research Professor of Psychiatry and author of “The Polyvagal Theory,” our “highest” level strategy is called “social engagement,” a relaxed state of being where the “social” muscles of the face (eyes, mouth and middle ear) are connected with the heart. In this state of being, we feel open to our environment and possibility, safe, comfortable, curious, interested, passionate and calm. Our heart rate and blood pressure are responsive, stress levels are low and the region of the brain, the pre-frontal cortex, responsible for wisdom, greater awareness, inspiration, alertness, and making wise choices is “on-line.” If we can remain in social engagement during a stressful situation, we have much more ability to respond effectively to the environment without subjecting our bodies to stress.6
However, if we are triggered by a stressful situation and all of our social engagement strategies do not work, the nervous system will engage the “fight or flight” strategy which puts our system in high alert. Think about a time when you had an argument with a loved one and your body tensed us, your heart rate and blood pressure increased, your face became rigid and you became angry or fearful. At that time, your gut stopped digesting your food as energy was being redirected to your limbs.
In today’s fast-paced, wired world marked by increasing levels of change, uncertainty and job insecurity, most of us are feeling under stress all of the time and we are constantly stimulating the fight/flight response. In addition, many of us learn at a young age to operate from a fight/flight state as a way of being and never truly know or experience deep calmness and relaxation in our mind and body.
When a person with IBS experiences the reactive trigger of abdominal pain and discomfort, it can activate the fight/flight response triggering a cascade of stress hormones and emotions, such as fear, worry and anxiety. Once the stress response kicks in, the communication between the brain and gut gets altered and IBS symptoms may worsen. In the presence of fear, when the brain releases hormones that prepare the body to fight or flee, sensory nerves in the gut are stimulated and the vagus nerve “turns up the volume” on serotonin circuits in the gut resulting in diarrhea.7 In this state, the older part of the brain, the limbic system, gets activated and someone with IBS can easily slide into reactive, habitual thinking and feeling patterns based on previous experiences of having abdominal pain and discomfort.
The limbic brain is involved with emotion, emotionally-charged memory, expectations of the world and predictions of the future, among other things.8 If the IBS sufferer is not able to find a way of calming down their system and interrupting the pain-reactivity cycle that has them in confusion and overwhelm, symptoms can worsen. Sleep may be disturbed and the body is not able to rest and repair which can lead to fatigue, feelings of powerlessness, uncertainty about the future, low confidence and low self-esteem.
Conventional Treatment Options
According to Western Medicine, there is no cure for IBS, but individuals can learn to manage symptoms. Treatment is mostly focused on making lifestyle, behavioural and dietary changes as well as the use of pharmaceutical drugs and supplements. Since emotional stress often triggers flare-ups, relaxation and stress management techniques as well as physical exercise are often suggested, requiring motivation and dedication to practice. It is also thought that people with IBS have an imbalance of healthy bacteria in the gut, therefore probiotics are also recommended as well as increasing dietary fibre.9 For severe cases, medications are used to provide temporary relief for symptoms as well as tranquilizers, anti-depressants or antibiotics.
The problem with symptom management strategies is that they never address the root cause and can create new problems. For example, having to obsessively watch everything you eat and restrict foods (like dairy or gluten) can be stressful in social situations or when eating out. You can start to become so identified with having IBS that your condition is all that you think about and it can be hard to cope with the psychological stress of worrying about the unpredictable onset of abdominal pain.
IBS suffers may be referred to counselling, interpersonal psychotherapy if they are dealing with stressful relationships or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). The focus in CBT sessions is to increase awareness of “cognitive distortions,” or inaccurate thoughts, which reinforce negative thinking or emotions. The idea being that if someone with IBS trained themselves to stop believing as true everything their mind is telling them and to question their own thinking, they would start to feel better.
Complimentary and Alternative Medicine Model
There are a plethora of treatment modalities that typically fall under the following categories: Herbal/Dietary, Somatic (body)-based, Mind-Body and Movement/Breathing.
Herbal/Dietary: Alternative health practitioners such as naturopathic physicians are similar to general practitioners in that they take a symptom-based approach, but use nutraceuticals and herbals, rather than drugs, for treatment to limit the side effects and toxicity. The standard protocol is nutritional therapy, building the immune system, restoring colon health by eliminating pathogens, candida and bacteria and repopulating the intestinal tract with good bacteria. They may prescribe digestive enzymes, allergy testing, homeopathic remedies and make other lifestyle recommendations and referrals to other alternative practitioners. This can often be a long, confusing and expensive process to find what works. However, similar to the conventional approach, the limitation is the overemphasis on treating the body. Since emotional triggers may play a big role in IBS flare-ups, this approach does not address the emotions, the presence of emotional trauma, habitual ways of thinking and perceiving and implicit beliefs that may perpetuate feelings of sadness, depression and low confidence.
Somatic-based approaches such as acupuncture, reflexology and massage help to induce a state of relaxation, improve circulation and the flow of vital energy or “chi” in the body. In Chinese medicine, disease is thought to occur when the flow of this energy is blocked in the energy meridians that make up a vast network in the body.
Yoga, breathing exercises, Qi Gong and Tai Chi are mindful movement and breathing practices that help to activate the parasympathetic nervous system which allows the body to “rest and digest.” They can help increase feelings of calmness, reduce pain, increase the flow of vital energy in the body and bring awareness to the mind-body connection. Although all of these practices can help, often the results do not last long and continued practice over a long period of time is necessary. Also, any aspects of Irritable Bowel Syndrome that are related to emotions, trauma, perception may not be addressed by these modalities alone.
“Mind-body” approaches such as meditation and hypnotherapy can help to increase awareness of the relationship between thought, emotion, perception and body sensations. Regular practice can deepen the realization that thought, emotion and perception all condition each other and affect the body by either creating well-being and ease or stress and discomfort. If you are motivated and committed to practice, are willing to set aside the time, or pay for hypnotherapy treatments, they can help you regain a sense of empowerment in managing symptoms or relapses and offer tools and techniques for the drugless management of pain.
Both the Conventional and the Complimentary & Alternative Medicine models would agree that IBS is a complex disorder involving the mind, body and brain. It requires experimenting with various types of treatments, herbal or prescription medications and other products. Time, money, motivation, discipline, commitment and a willingness to become more aware and conscious of triggers and to learn new responses to stressors are needed. At best, symptoms can be managed as well as the length of time between flare-ups increased. At worst, an IBS sufferer will continue to experience unpredictable bouts of digestive distress and pain.
Drugs for the relief of pain are used frequently by people with IBS. However, according to the International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, “few persons with IBS report being very satisfied with available treatments. There continues to be a pressing need to find new and more effective treatments for IBS.”10
The key aspect of IBS is that it is a disorder involving a heightened sensitivity of the bowel to both internal and external stressors.”11 The main treatment goals are to get the bowel to respond differently to stressors (where even food can be a “stressor”) and to affect the communication between the brain and the gut so that pain signals coming from the brain are altered.
One of the challenges with any chronic condition that involves pain and discomfort is that it starts to consume your focus or attention. Your deep desire to get rid of your symptoms may become the motivation for doing yoga, meditation or other practices, therapies and treatments, but it may also keep you caught in a kind of mental struggle. The paradox is that the more that you try to figure out a solution, analyze it, “therapize it,” spiritualize it, or understand it, you develop a deeper relationship with it and it starts to become part of your sense of self. What is needed to come out of this struggle is a new level of thinking and a conscious connection to the Truth of your Being and connection with Source, with Reality.
Albert Einstein said that: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” If thought, emotions and perception all condition each other and have an effect on the body, an IBS sufferer using the same level of thinking to heal their condition will not get any kind of lasting relief until they are able to access another level of consciousness.
How the Trivedi Effect® can help
The Trivedi Effect® offers a whole mind-body-spirit solution to regaining physical, mental and emotional health. Well over one hundred thousand individuals across the world have experienced the Trivedi Effect® and received Energy Transmissions or “Blessings” from Mahendra Trivedi and the other three Healing Masters, Alice Branton, Dahryn Trivedi and Gopal Nayak. Through Divine Grace, these Masters possess an extraordinary gift of harnessing Divine Energy and helping you to connect to the God of your understanding.
This Divine energy is infinitely intelligent and “knows” exactly what you need for your healing and growth. The Energy Transmissions work on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels to enhance your sense of well-being and optimize your growth and potential. Consciousness is unlimited and our potential for growth is unlimited. Usually what stops our growth and keeps us feeling stuck are negative tendencies and habits of thought, feelings and behaviours. With the help of these energy transmissions, many people have reported greater ease and ability to make mental, emotional and behavioural changes with less effort and better results. The Trivedi Effect® is not affiliated with any religion and requires no rituals or special practices. All that is needed is an open mind, an honest heart and a desire for growth and development of consciousness. The Energy Transmissions complement and enhance any other medical or alternative treatment.
Commonly reported results from receiving energy transmissions have been better sleep, improved digestion, increased ability to handle stress, improvement in mental health, relief of symptoms related to depression & anxiety, pain reduction, improved relationships, improved finances, increase feeling of optimism and well-being, increased intuitive power, less fear from the future, new opportunities coming into one’s life, increased productivity and ability to focus. Many individuals with severe illnesses and diseases have reported beneficial and even miraculous improvements. Over a period of time receiving the energy transmissions, many people report that their perception and thinking changes. They feel less reactive to others and their environment and start to experience feelings of happiness that are not dependent on conditions being a certain way.
An American Zen Teacher, Adyashanti, once said that we are all hardwired to react when we lose conscious connection to Source, to truth, to reality. We may get angry, lost, confused, and sad. We may try to control our environment or the people around us in the effort to feel safe. Our bodies just don’t feel good when we are in illusion and have lost conscious connection to Truth and Reality.12 The Trivedi Effect® helps restore your connection to your Source. This connection assists you in regaining inner peace and calming mental restlessness and mind chattering.
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Despite thousands of testimonials and anecdotal evidence of the efficacy of the Trivedi Effect®, Mr. Trivedi chose to subject his ability to scientific scrutiny. He has had over 4,000 scientific experiments conducted under controlled laboratory conditions in the areas of Biotechnology, Microbiology, Genetics, cancer cells, bacteria/viruses/fungi, agriculture, animal production, material science, and nutraceuticals. The Trivedi Effect® has been proven scientifically to alter gene expression in plants and to change the structure of the atom in various materials, such as ceramics, polymers and metals. The extraordinary responsiveness of plants, animals and materials to the Trivedi Effect® suggests that these energy transmissions can work as effectively on humans to restore optimal physical, mental and emotional health.
Trivedi Science™ is now moving in an exciting new direction with nutraceutical and herbal product research to offer new solutions to the world and to bring the next generation of “intelligent” nutraceutical supplements that have been optimized and potentized by the Trivedi Effect® for maximum absorption and efficacy.
The Trivedi Effect® and in the near future, Trivedi Science™, can offer a long-term solution for the treatment of IBS and other functional and psycho-somatic disorders that involve many different factors and the complex interaction between thought, emotion, perception, body and behavior. The energy miraculously connects you to your inner guidance system and you are better able to receive a flow of Life Force energy in your totality that starts to guide and direct you back to your original state of well-being.
1 Beck, Leslie, RD, The Complete A-Z Nutrition Encyclopedia, Toronto Penguin Canada, 2010
2 “About Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).” AboutIBS.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015.
3 Beck, Leslie, RD, The Complete A-Z Nutrition Encyclopedia, Toronto : Penguin Canada, 2010
4“About Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).” AboutIBS.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015
5″Think Twice: How the Gut’s “Second Brain” Influences Mood and Well-Being.” Scientific American Global RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015.
6 “Polyvagal Theory, Sensory Challenge and Gut Emotions — Sott.net.” SOTT.net. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2015.
7 “The Enteric Nervous System: The Brain in the Gut.” The Enteric Nervous System: The Brain in the Gut. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 May 2015.
8Peyton, Sarah, Riding the Wave II: Transforming Patterns of Reactive Triggers Workshop, October 2010
9Beck, Leslie, RD, The Complete A-Z Nutrition Encyclopedia, Toronto : Penguin Canada, 2010
10About Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).” AboutIBS.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015
11About Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).” AboutIBS.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015
12Adyashanti, An Invitation to Awaken, CD, Open Gate Publishing, 2007