Chloe Madeley reveals her crippling IBS made her feel unattractive
Chloe Madeley has revealed a probiotic supplement finally cured her of her crippling bloating.
The daughter of TV presenters Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan endured 15 years of agonising bloating due to consuming too many protein powders and dairy products, which left her feeling unattractive and too uncomfortable to work.
Chloe, 30, who has more than 180,000 followers on Instagram, told MailOnline: ‘I woke up a size eight and went to bed a size 12. I couldn’t eat all day on photo shoots because I didn’t know how my body would react.’
Before discovering her passion for health and fitness, Chloe, who is thought to have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), dismissed her symptoms as just part of life, until her then boyfriend recommended she give probiotics a try.
Although sceptical at first, the now qualified personal trainer has been amazed by Alflorex, saying: ‘Within two weeks my bloating disappeared. I never have any reactions or flare ups.
‘I can wear what I want without worrying about whether my stomach looks bloated or not.’
Consultant gastroenterologist Dr Marcus Harbord told MailOnline there is ‘substantial evidence’ probiotics ease bowel irritability, but added their effects likely vary between patients and further research is required.
Below, Chloe, who is engaged to England rugby player James Haskell, speaks of her battle with IBS and why she is encouraging everyone to optimise their gut health.
Chloe Madeley has revealed a probiotic supplement finally cured her of the bloating that made her size eight frame swell by two dress sizes (pictured on a photo shoot earlier this year)
Although always slim, Chloe felt uncomfortable, which she claims affected her ability to work and forced her to go without food on long photo shoot days, leaving her tired and hungry
Chloe, who regularly shows off her impressive physique on Instagram, claims she no longer has to worry about a bloated abdomen ruining date nights with her fiancé (pictured in March)
DOES SCIENCE SUPPORT CHLOE’S CLAIMS?
Consultant gastroenterologist Dr Marcus Harbord told MailOnline: ‘The microbes within our gut are called the microbiota.
‘There is substantial, and emerging scientific evidence that they are important in a wide range of diseases, including bowel irritability.
‘Therefore, it is conceivable that taking probiotics could reset a disordered microbiota.
‘However, we do not yet know the correct cocktail of probiotics that are required in irritable bowel, nor do we know how effective they will turn out to be.
He said: ‘Furthermore, it is very likely that different patients will require different cocktails of probiotics.
‘So far, trials in irritable bowel using probiotics have been positive but the research evidence to date is somewhat underwhelming.’
‘I thought I just had to grin and bear it’
Although my symptoms started as a teenager, my bloating got worse when I got into fitness and started playing around with my food intake, with new fibre and water goals to hit.
Plus I was training twice a day in the gym and that meant my protein requirements were quite high, with my whole diet centred around eating protein and vegetables up to five times a day.
I was consuming a lot of protein powders at the time and really seeing the side effects – more bloating, more gas and more pain.
Bloating is very common after meals so I dismissed it as normal, thinking it was hormonal or stress related.
It had an impact on so many aspects of my life. I was unable to eat on photo shoots so would be hungry and tired all day.
I felt unattractive on a date as I could not find flattering clothes that hid my bloating by the end of the night.
When I became qualified in health I started eating more vegetables and protein, which caused my bloating to become so painful.
I was never willing to sacrifice my favourite food and knew as a highly-active trainer I had to eat protein, so I thought I just had to grin and bear it.
Before discovering probiotics, Chloe struggled to get abs beneath her ‘size 10 softness’ (left)
After years of bloating, Chloe is amazed by the results and feels confident in her appearance
The gym fanatic makes exercise part of life, even working out with her fiancé James Haskell
After just five days of overindulging, Chloe sees her physique creep back to before (left)
CHLOE’S MADELEY’S TOP TIPS TO MAXIMISE GUT HEALTH
To optimise gut health, Chloe Madeley recommends people:
Monitor their protein intake if they are experiencing bloating. Our bodies can only digest so much protein at one time
Be aware that cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts and cauliflower, can make bloating worse
Drink plenty of water
‘I have been amazed by the results’
I decided to take Alflorex because, unlike many probiotics, it does not need refrigerating so can just be thrown in my gym bag.
Alflorex is also clinically proven to be effective, unlike many supplements that do not get absorbed into the body very well.
There was an adjustment period initially.
Many people experience excess gas, irregular bowel movements or even more bloating within the first few weeks of taking probiotics.
Once that settled down I have been amazed by the results.
It’s made me much more confident about what I wear now – finally after all the training and dieting, and years of bloating.