Good for you for doing your research! Essentially, while a lot of dietary changes can help people with their bowel problems, it's really difficult to pinpoint what exactly is the culprit in a lot of these cases. That's why one book will say you need to cut out dairy, another one will say you have to cut out gluten, another red meat, another raw veggies, another yeast...
My take is this: it will take a LOT of time to figure out what works best for your individual body. Some people go on elimination diets - basically going down to a bare-bones diet, then gradually adding in major food groups one at a time over a period of weeks or even months. And sometimes they find a particular food that really does a number on them and they can eliminate it from there. It may work wonders.
Some major culprits for people with IBS do tend to be milk products (and not just products with lactose, but casein and other milk proteins), wheat gluten (found in a lot of foods), high fructose corn syrup (also found in a lot of processed foods), and sugar alcohols.
If you want to see if you have a sensitivity to any of these foods, it'll take some work, but you have to really start tracking everything you eat. You have to become a food-label demon (i.e., you have to read every single ingredient before putting it in your mouth). You have to understand the difference between sucrose and sorbitol, between lactose and casein and whey, between high fructose corn syrup and regular ol' fructose, etc. That book you have is probably a good start.
You might also check out "Eating Right for a Bad Gut." That has some helpful dietary hints as well.
Keep us updated - I really hope you're able to get those symptoms under control soon!
Post Edited (Marsky) : 11/21/2007 3:51:28 PM (GMT-7)