About the SIBO Test
The SIBO test is recommended if you suspect a bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine. SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth) occurs when there is an increase in the bacterial population in the small intestine. These bacteria produce various degradation products such as hydrogen, carbon dioxide and short-chain fatty acids, which give rise to various gastrointestinal problems.
There are different types of SIBO that you can test for, which is why it is important to know what kind of SIBO you have. Different types of SIBO require different types of treatment methods. It is common to have several different varieties, but one of them is more dominant. Our test analyses the presence of methane gas (where different bacteria and microbes create gases) and hydrogen gas (where the bacteria ferment carbohydrates and create different types of gases). These are usually seen as the most common types of SIBO.
Learn More about the SIBO test:
Below we will go deeper into the following sections:
- Symptoms of SIBO
- SIBO – How to perform the SIBO test
- Important advice before taking the SIBO test
- Not Sure This Test is for You?
Symptoms of SIBO
SIBO has been theorised to be a possible cause of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). People diagnosed with IBS can benefit from testing for SIBO as studies have shown that almost 80% of these people have an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. Bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine can create problems such as:
- Abdominal swelling
- Abdominal pain or cramps
If SIBO is left untreated, it can eventually lead to more problems such as leaky gut, depression, headaches, food intolerances, acne, fatigue or autoimmune reactions.
SIBO – how to perform the SIBO Test
SIBO is a breath test and includes 15 ml of lactulose liquid. The test measures the levels of hydrogen and methane in the exhaled air on several occasions during the day after ingestion of lactulose. This will tell if there is a bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine. You carry out the test yourself at home and then send it to our lab for analysis.
You get the results of the test sent to you digitally, in the form of a report. This report includes recommendations on how you can proceed to treat your imbalance, in case you have a bacterial overgrowth.
Important advice before taking the SIBO Test
In order to not receive a false test result, we advise you to carefully follow the instructions given below, about what (not) to do before taking the test.
2-4 WEEKS BEFORE THE TEST:
Wait at least four weeks if you have recently undergone antibiotic treatment, colonoscopy, barium studies, barium enemas or have had diarrhoea.
7 DAYS BEFORE THE TEST:
Avoid using laxatives, laxatives and / or laxatives as well as acid scavengers containing aluminium or magnesium hydroxide.
24/48 HOURS BEFORE THE TEST:
– Stop taking probiotics 48 hours before the test.
– Foods that you CAN eat before starting your 12 hour fast: Baked or fried chicken, fish or turkey (salt and pepper only), white bread (only), plain steamed white rice, eggs, clear chicken or beef broth without vegetable pieces. Vegetarians can eat tofu with salt and pepper.
– You can only drink plain water, coffee and tea (without sugar, artificial sweeteners, milk or cream).
12 HOURS BEFORE THE TEST:
– The last 12 hours are the fasting period. Ingest NOTHING except water for 12 hours before and during the test.
– Unless otherwise instructed by your doctor, do not take unnecessary medicines or supplements until the test is completed.
– Do not chew gum, do not eat sweets and do not use mouthwash until the test has been completed.
ONE HOUR BEFORE THE TEST:
– NO smoking (including passive smoking) for at least one hour before or at any time during the breath test.
– NO sleep or strenuous exercise for at least one hour before or at any time during the breath test.
– Do not use toothpaste.
Who should test for SIBO?
People with IBS, people who have difficulty breaking down carbohydrates, those with gluten intolerance / celiac disease and people who experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms, are considered suitable to test for SIBO.
However, there are other intestinal imbalances such as fungal overgrowth that can cause similar problems such as SIBO. Other gut health tests that might be of interest could be the Candida test if you also want to analyse the possible presence of yeasts, or our largest intestinal test Gut Microbiome Test XL if you are interested in doing a thorough test of your gut.
How to test for SIBO?
This test is a sibo breath test, by which you must breath through a mouthpiece into a bag, filling it slowly. You will do so multiple times. For more details, check the instructions tab.
How long does it take until I get my results?
You will receive your result digitally as soon as your blood sample has been analysed by the lab. This should take about a week.
What causes SIBO?
Several structural problems in the small intestine can hinder its ability to deal with waste and excess bacteria. SIBO can also be caused by surgery or disease, in which case the passage of food and waste is slowed down in the digestive tract. This results in a breeding ground for bacteria. An overuse of medicine can also disrupt the balance of gut flora.
How to treat SIBO?
The most common way to treat SIBO is with antibiotics, but in some severe cases surgery may be necessary. Consult with your healthcare provider about the right solution for your situation.
Not Sure This Test is for You?
If you’re still uncertain whether this test is right for you, don’t hesitate to reach out to our friendly and knowledgeable customer support team. We’re here to guide you towards the tests that best match your health concerns and objectives. You can contact us through our contact page or use our live chat for immediate assistance.