By Isabelle Huot
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is a condition in which micro-organisms that usually ferment carbohydrates and fibres in the large intestine multiply in the digestive tract or in the small intestine. The symptoms of SIBO are similar to those of lactose intolerance or irritable bowel syndrome—bloating, gas, diarrhea or constipation, and fatigue—which complicates diagnosis.
Breath tests that measure the levels of hydrogen and methane exhaled are minimally invasive and an effective way to diagnose the condition. While taking antibiotics is recommended to treat SIBO, a diet low in fermentable carbohydrates such as legumes can do a lot to alleviate the effects.
If you have symptoms, you should consult a gastroenterologist. A dietitian can also help adjust your diet accordingly.