A healthy gut produces various gases in appropriate and well-balanced proportions. These gases arise from the food fermentation process that takes place in the digestive tract.
Generally, a healthy gut will produce a higher amount of nitrogen, then hydrogen, followed by carbon dioxide, oxygen, methane, and hydrogen sulfide.
Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) occurs when there is an overproduction of methane, hydrogen, or hydrogen sulfide gases in the small intestines.
SIBO can be an elusive and chronic illness but a common theme among all sufferers is abdominal discomfort, constipation, and a general feeling of sickness.
Part of what makes SIBO so elusive and treatment quite challenging is that different types of bacteria are responsible for SIBO and the symptoms you present can be different from what another SIBO patient may present.
The two most common presentations are methane SIBO and hydrogen SIBO. Patients commonly test for both at different times along the illness’s spectrum.
This article will focus on methane SIBO and will offer recommendations for the best herbal treatments for methane SIBO.
Causes of Methane SIBO
A single-celled organism known as archaea causes methane SIBO. An overgrowth of this organism causes an increase in the production of methane in the digestive tract.
Methane production actually requires the production of hydrogen first. This explains why you can test positive for hydrogen SIBO and methane SIBO at different times.
When you consume foods containing fiber, the bacteria in the stomach ferment the fiber and in the process produce hydrogen. The microorganism that causes methane SIBO, archaea, requires hydrogen to survive and then produces methane as a byproduct.
Interestingly, even though you may be producing a large amount of hydrogen gas, test results may not show this because the archaea organism consumes the hydrogen gas and produces methane. Test results are therefore more likely to test positive for methane SIBO.
SIBO patients demonstrate several symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain, gas, diarrhea, cramps, and a general feeling of fullness. Much of the time, constipation accompanies almost all of these symptoms.
Methane causes bloating in the gut, which slows down the digestion process and increases the risk of constipation. What makes constipation particularly dangerous is that it promotes more bacterial growth, which results in the production of more methane and the vicious cycle continues until you find the right treatment.
Treating Methane SIBO With Antibiotics
Antibiotics are the most common treatment for methane SIBO. Unfortunately, as is typical with antibiotics, patients often become resistant to these medications. With continued use, antibiotics can be ineffective in mitigating the overgrowth of archaea bacteria in the gut.
The most commonly used antibiotics for SIBO are Rifaximin and Neomycin. Studies show that when both antibiotics are used together instead of on their own, they can be up to 87 percent effective at curtailing bacterial overgrowth in the gut.
Rifaximin and Neomycin are comparably safer than other types of SIBO antibiotics as these do not have adverse effects on your gut flora in the same way as other antibiotics do.
While SIBO is a chronic disease that can reoccur even after treatment, treating this condition with antibiotics can further increase the risk of reoccurrence due to the associated resistance.
Using Herbal Treatments For Methane SIBO
Natural herbal treatments for methane SIBO are a safer alternative to antibiotics for SIBO. In fact, several studies already show that herbal antibiotics for methane SIBO are as effective as pharmaceutical antibiotics.
Admittedly, herbal treatments for methane SIBO may take slightly longer to mitigate the symptoms of SIBO. However, these treatments may have fewer adverse effects and the treatment results may be longer lasting.
For best results when using botanicals to treat methane SIBO, consider using two different herbal treatments. Additionally, avoid using the same herbal bacterial for too long. Instead, rotate the treatments to minimize the risk of resistance, which is a possibility even for herbal methane SIBO treatments.
Most herbal antibiotics last about 30 days but depending on the amount of methane gas in your gut, you may need more than one course of herbal antibiotics.
The Best Herbal Treatments For Methane SIBO
SIBO patients have a wide array of herbal treatment options. After extensive research, we recommend three of the best herbal treatments for methane SIBO.
Candibactin-AR+ Candibactin-BR by Metagenics
Medical experts commonly recommend the Metagenics brand to methane SIBO patients. In particular, Candibactin-AR and Candibactin-BR used in combination can offer relief from SIBO symptoms.
CandiBactin-AR consists of a mixture of herbal extracts and essential oils including sage, lemon, and mint. These capsules help to promote healthy gut flora and improve the functions of the digestive system.
On the other hand, CandiBactin-BR has berberine as the main ingredient, which supports intestinal health by aiding in the removal of toxins in the digestive tract.
Berberine hydrochloride is extracted from the Phellodendron amurense species and is blended with coptis extracts and other oriental herbs that include rhubarb, licorice and, ginger.
These methane SIBO herbal treatments are vegetarian, gluten-free, and non-GMO.
FC-Cidal + Dysbiocide by Biotics Research
The combination of Dysbiocide and FC-Cidal offers a potent deterrent against the proliferation of methane-producing bacteria in the gut.
In addition to being dairy and gluten-free, both FC-Cidal and Dysbiocide are packed with herbal extracts with amazing antibacterial properties.
The FC-Cidal herbal treatment contains ingredients such as Olive leaf extract, thyme, horsetail, Tinospora, and French Tarragon among others.
The active ingredients in Dysbiocide include Dill, Acacia, Yarrow, and Stemona sessilifolia just to mention a few.
Neem Plus Herbal Supplement by Ayush Herbs
Neem is among the most potent herbs and contains strong antibacterial, antioxidant, and adaptogenic properties.
This particular brand of Neem herbal treatment for methane contains commendable ingredients including Amla, Haritaki, Tinospora, Rubia cordifolia, and bahera among others, all of which help to mitigate constipation and promote digestive function.
Methane SIBO is a tricky illness to treat. However, with the right combination of herbal antibiotics, you can manage SIBO symptoms.
Preferably, work with a practitioner who understands the importance of using natural herbal antibiotics to treat methane SIBO as pharmaceutical antibiotics alone may not offer long-term relief against the effects of bacterial overgrowth in the gut.