My SIBO results are back, and not as I suspected, they are negative.

In any normal circumstance, this would make me over-the-moon happy, but since this is a follow-up post to frustrated by SIBO, I am anything but happy.

I mentioned,

My SIBO testing results should be back within a week. If I had to guess….testing results will show I still have SIBO. And at that point, I’ll do yet another round of antibiotics and then never test again until I show signs of a relapse.

But here’s the deal, after thinking on that for a few days, I realized that up until the moment I drank the substrate, I had been feeling phenomenal, and thus I should have concluded a negative test. Whatever happened during and post-substrate would not show up on an immediately taken SIBO test.

So with a negative diagnosis, chances are I will not have access to the antibiotics unless I pay the $300+ again for retesting to show a positive SIBO reading.

Updated in 2020 to add: The reason they were probably negative is due to that 3rd form of SIBO. Also, today I am 100% healed!

SIBO Results

SIBO Results

I suffered a lot this past week. My SIBO symptoms are very typical, so it’s not like I am only kind-of, sort-of sure. My upper gut fermented, then extreme bloat set in, I (almost overnight) retained 5 pounds of bloat weight, no amount of sleep made me feel rested and energized and I felt irritable. As of last night, I am now also showing some of the other symptoms that come when it gets worse – not digesting food, completely off bowels, and a horrible stomach ache.

The SIBO results were wrong, but at this point, I feel stuck.

When we’re stuck in life, there are always two options: stay stuck or get unstuck. It sounds so obvious, but for many those ways for getting unstuck seem daunting and draining, and so staying stuck remains.

The way I see it, my current options include:

  1. Retest, if my doctor would have the kit sent to me (spending more money on what I already know is)
  2. Stay miserable, making no changes, until I can get into my doctor again (2+ months minimum likely)
  3. The Elemental Diet
  4. Starving the gut bacteria, with the hopes that what I currently have is so mild that that’s all I need

You might be surprised to learn which option I have chosen.

Starving Gut Bacteria

Number 4, I have chosen number 4.

I am neither happy nor 100% confident in it. But after several days thinking on it, this is the direction I’m going. There is no denying that I am, essentially, livid that I was thriving until I retested. I then sat here in misery while my doctor just said, “We will discuss at your next appointment.”

I’m not sure what part of the SIBO memo he does not understand, but I don’t have 2+ months to wait around, feeling horrible and becoming depleted of everything again.

It might make me ridiculously stubborn, but there are people who make excuses for feeling horrible and then there are people who do something about it.

I can make that appointment with him, but in the meantime, I’ll be starving the gut bacteria to see if I can kick the SIBO to the curb again.

I do this with a combination of AIP/SCD/GAPS and low-FODMAP. 

I’m confident of how it works and how to live my life, but I’m not absolutely certain that it will work because as I’ve said before, SIBO is a mammoth beast that most people have to overcome over-and-over-and-over again.

I believe I’ll know if it’s going to work within about 30-ish days.


I’ll be back next week to dive in, to do my very best with starving gut bacteria and then to hope for the SIBO results I desperately need.

If you liked this post, you might also enjoy:

    1. Healing Blooms from Within
    2. Reasonable SIBO
    3. 15 ways to deal with constipation


p.s. Gut healing is not a diet. But also gut healing is a diet, and I’m not making any justifications for why I’m doing this. Live with SIBO long enough, and you will understand.

Gut Healing is Not a Diet...or Maybe It Is?

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  1. Thank you for sharing your experience. I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis, specifically Proctitis about 6 years ago. With balsalazide, canasa and time, my symptoms went into remission. 2 years ago I had a bout of candida overgrowth that no Rx or OTC drugs could heal so I went on a GF, low carb, low sugar diet and eventually cleared it up. A year ago after a clean bill of health following a flex sig, my doc slowly took me off all my meds. I thought it was gone & I was thrilled to go from 9 pills a day to none! Over the summer I got engaged (YAY!) but then about a month later, found myself in the midst of a proctitis flare- bleeding and digestively irregular. After another flex sig to confirm what I already knew, my doc put me back on my 9 pills a day (8 Balsalazide & 1 Canasa). Symptoms are not clearing like they did the first time I was diagnosed. Doc wanted to test for SIBO as well. Although I thought I knew better initially, after reading your blog, your symptoms sound like mine (very little change in diet yet, 5 lbs. of bloat weight gain overnight, tired, cranky, bleeding). I’m going to try to get lab test for SIBO today. I’m thanking you for sharing your experience because it can feel extremely isolating to go through this alone. I have friends & family but it’s hard for them to understand what this is like. I usually try not to think about it, mind my diet & live my life, but the last few days have SUCKED. I know it sounds super frivolous but with my wedding coming up in June, my biggest concern is, “What if I have a flare on my big day? What if I end up looking pregnant in my wedding dress!?” Le sigh. I know that should be the least of my worries but that’s where I am. Anyway, I found your blog & felt some relief to find someone else is going through this too. Thank you.

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