Remedies for Irritable Bowel (Colitis)

There are a number of natural remedies for irritable bowel condition, also known as colitis.

A natural remedy for colitis from partially germinated barley has been documented in the medical literature since 1998 but has failed to reach widespread use by affected patients (please note that barley as a grain is not as the partially germinated product from Japan)

The best documented remedy comes from Kirin beer company in Japan. A by-product of beer brewing is partially germinated barley, which increases the water content of the digestive tract, increases the growth of healthy bacteria, and improves fermentation to produce butyrate, a molecule that protects the lining of the gastric tract. The partially germinated barley is marketed in the USA as Benefiber (

Another potential natural remedy is to take oral butyrate itself. Butyrate is the byproduct of fermentation in a healthy gastric tract. Butyrate is available as a dietary supplement and is regarded as safe and well tolerated. [Digestive Diseases Science 45: 976-81, 2002] Dosage is 4000 milligrams (4 grams) per day or as directed on labels. [Alimentary Pharmacological Therapy 22: 789-94, 2005]

Another possible remedy is guar gum (dietary fiber obtained from the Indian cluster bean) which has been tested with success in animals and humans. [Journal Nutritional Biochemistry Sept. 22, 2005 online; Nutrition January 2006 online] Five grams a day of guar gum is reported to normalize bowel movements and alleviate other symptoms. Up to 20 grams of guar gum per day is deemed to be safe. [American Family Physician 72: 2501-06, 2005] -Copyright Bill Sardi 2006

Information selected from

Note that irritable bowel condition may be aggravated by allergies and sensitivities.