Question: "Some fruits" I've more than once read that 'some fruits' have non-soluble fibre and might be avoided. My GP suggested excluding oranges - any other advice on this? Which fruits, in fact, act like bran - which I know I'm better off without?
Answer: From what my patients tell me, I cannot think the distinction between soluble and insoluble fibre is that crucial. Itís true that the woody particles of bran and oat husk for example can stimulate the gut, but equally so the poorly absorbed sugars and starches in rolled oats, pulses (beans, lentils and peas), and fruits can be fermented to gas and cause more bloating, pain and diarrhoea (in some people!). Also many fruits contain laxatives that can really get the bowels going. Prunes, plums, and figs are particularly strong, but other fruits can also stimulate the gut if you take too many. So if you have IBS, my advice would be to avoid the laxative fruits and just eat others in moderation to suit you. The essential message from the IBS Network is that you are in charge, but we can help you make the right decisions for you.