Mediterranean Diet Improves Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms and Mental Health as per a New Study

Mediterranean Diet Improves Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms and Mental HealthRecent research exploring the advantages of a Mediterranean diet for individuals dealing with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) has revealed some unexpected findings.

The study, led by Dr. Heidi Staudacher from Deakin University’s Food & Mood Center, discovered that not only did the Mediterranean diet, which is rich in fruits, vegetables, and legumes, enhance the mental well-being of the participants, but it also led to an improvement in their gastrointestinal symptoms.


According to Dr. Staudacher, individuals with IBS often tend to avoid certain foods that are crucial in a Mediterranean diet due to the fear of worsening their symptoms.

In her study, Dr. Staudacher and her team followed 59 people over six weeks, providing counselling on the Mediterranean diet to one group while the other group continued with their regular diet.

The aim was to investigate whether adopting a Mediterranean diet could alleviate both depressive and gut symptoms in individuals with IBS.

The results were quite remarkable:

  • 83% of those on the Mediterranean diet experienced a decrease in their IBS symptoms compared to only 37% in the control group.
  • Additionally, participants on the Mediterranean diet reported lower levels of depression at the end of the study.
  • Surprisingly, they also experienced fewer gastrointestinal symptoms compared to the control group.

These findings suggest that rather than solely focusing on eliminating certain foods known to trigger symptoms, promoting a Mediterranean-style diet could be beneficial for managing IBS symptoms.


Dr. Staudacher emphasizes the need for further research, particularly larger studies comparing the Mediterranean diet with other diets, to better understand its effects on gut and psychological symptoms.

She also suggests that dietitians play a crucial role in helping individuals gradually incorporate high-fiber and high-FODMAP foods into their diets to prevent triggering gut symptoms.

In conclusion, this study sheds light on a potential dietary approach that could offer relief to individuals living with IBS, emphasizing the importance of a holistic and health-promoting diet in managing their symptoms.

Author Bio

Devon Andre has been involved in the health and dietary supplement industry for a number of years. Devon has written extensively for Bel Marra Health. He has a Bachelor of Forensic Science from the University of Windsor, and went on to complete a Juris Doctor from the University of Pittsburgh. Devon is keenly aware of trends and new developments in the area of health and wellness. He embraces an active lifestyle combining diet, exercise and healthy choices. By working to inform readers of the options available to them, he hopes to improve their health and quality of life.