IBgard Review: Digestive Relief or Waste of Money?

IBgard Review: Digestive Relief or Waste of Money?


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IBgard is a gut health supplement that’s used to treat a number of gastrointestinal symptoms. The brand claims that their supplement helps manage cramping, diarrhea, bloating, constipation, gas and more.

But what’s actually in IBgard, and are the active ingredients proven to enhance gut health, or are these just marketing claims? Does the supplement contain any questionable additive ingredients? Does it cause side effects? And how do real users rate and describe the effects of IBgard?

In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more as we review the ingredients in IBgard based on medical studies to give our take on whether or not the supplement is likely to be effective. 

We’ll also share our thoughts on whether or not it’s likely to cause side effects, and highlight customer reviews of the product.

Ingredient Analysis

IBgard ingredients

Peppermint oil is the only active ingredient in IBgard, at a dosage of 180 milligrams (mg).

This ingredient is a well-studied botanical treatment for stomach and digestive ailments. A 2018 medical review found that peppermint oil had a number of biological mechanisms that can help heal the gut and relieve digestive symptoms.

Specifically, peppermint oil can relax smooth muscles, has anti-inflammatory activity and is antimicrobial. The study authors concluded that clinical trials “support its use” in treatment of digestive issues.

Peppermint oil is so effective for digestive disorders that it’s even being studied for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

A clinical trial published in the Gastroenterology journal found that peppermint oil which was formulated to release in the intestines rather than the stomach (like IBgard) caused significant reductions in abdominal pain and overall discomfort.

While we consider the active ingredient in IBgard likely to be effective for relieving digestive symptoms, the supplement also contains a number of questionable additive ingredients that health-conscious consumers may wish to avoid.

Titanium dioxide is a colorant which is banned in the E.U. for use as a food additive due to toxicity concerns.

Yellow 5 and Green 3 are artificial food dyes. As we documented in our Metamucil review, clinical studies have documented toxicity concerns with all food dyes currently approved for use in the U.S.

Overall we consider IBgard likely to be effective for digestive symptom relief, but we do not recommend the supplement due to the inclusion of three questionable additive ingredients.

Does IBgard Cause Side Effects?

Unlike the majority of dietary supplements we review on Illuminate Health, IBgard has actually been studied in legitimate clinical research, which makes it easier to assess the risk of side effects than based on ingredients alone.

A clinical trial published in the Digestive Diseases and Sciences journal tested the effects of IBgard on patients with IBS and reported on side effects.

No serious adverse effects were noted, and the group taking placebo pills actually experienced more side effects than the group taking IBgard capsules. This suggests that IBgard is unlikely to cause any side effects.

We consider this to be a major benefit of IBgard compared to other over-the-counter (OTC) digestive treatments.

Real People Try IBgard

A YouTube creator named Whitney claims that IBgard significantly improved her gastrointestinal health and quality-of-life:

A TikTok user named Amanda Friedman claims that IBgard improved her bloating and included before-and-after images:

@amandafriedz #fyp #fypシ #fypage #ibs #ibscheck #ibstiktok #ibstips #tummyproblems #ibsproblems #stomachproblems #stomach #medicine #medicinetips #gutproblems #gut ♬ original sound - Amanda Friedman

Why Was IBgard’s Manufacturer Sued?

In 2021, Nestlé Health Sciences (the manufacturer of IBgard) was sued in a class-action lawsuit alleging false advertising, according to ClassAction.org.

The subject of the lawsuit was the brand’s claims that their supplement is “clinically proven” to relieve symptoms of IBS. The plaintiffs claim that there were methodological issues with the clinical studies funded by Nestlé, and that it’s misleading for the brand to make this health claim.

The lawsuit also disputes the description (at the time) of IBgard as a “medical food,” because the FDA has not published any specific nutritional requirements for patients with IBS that are different from nutritional requirements of healthy patients.

At the time of publishing this article, it’s unclear if this lawsuit is ongoing or if it’s been settled.

We do not consider this lawsuit to pose any legitimate concerns that should worry consumers. It’s mostly regarding semantic distinctions and we would actually agree with Nestlés claims in this case, because this supplement has been found to have favorable effects in legitimate clinical trials published in peer-reviewed medical journals.

Where to Get the Best Price

IBgard is sold at a variety of online retailers. Here’s the price breakdown for the 48-count product at the time of updating this article:

CVS: $37.49 (link)

Walgreens: $34.99 (link)

Walmart: $32 (link)

Target: $30.99 (plus shipping, link)

Amazon: $27.44 (free shippinglink to official Amazon listing)

IBGard is currently almost 40% cheaper on Amazon than at CVS when factoring in shipping fees.

Our Clean Gut Health Picks

MBG Organic Fiber Potency+ is our top fiber pick because it's certified organic, provides 7 g of fiber per serving and costs under $1.85 per serving at the time of updating this article.

MBG Organic Fiber Potency+ contains 100% soluble fiber, which was described as "one of the most important nutrients for the gut microbiota" in a clinical review published in the Molecules journal.

Bulletproof Express 3-in-1 Probiotic is our top value probiotic supplement, because it costs only $1.20 per serving at the time of updating this article.

Probiotics "can improve in the immune, gastrointestinal...health systems in healthy adults" according to a 2019 medical review.

VSL#3 is our top premium probiotic pick, because this probiotic supplement has been studied in 25 clinical trials, and a 2020 meta-study on VSL#3 concluded the following:

"...many studies demonstrated that VSL#3 has a beneficial effect on obesity and diabetes, allergic diseases, nervous systemic diseases, AS, bone diseases, and female reproductive systemic diseases."

All of the products recommended in this section are entirely free of ingredients that we consider to be unhealthy.

Real Customers Rate IBgard

Amazon is a more objective resource for customer reviews than a brand’s website in our opinion. IBgard has been reviewed over 14,000 times on Amazon, with an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

The top positive review from a verified purchaser comes from a user named “Matteo” who claims the supplement has helped with IBS symptoms:

“I recently purchased this product to help with my IBS and I am blown away by the results! After just a few days of use, I noticed a significant improvement in my symptoms. The bloating and abdominal pain that had been plaguing me for years have nearly disappeared.”

The top negative review from a verified purchaser is written by a user named “A. Reader” who claims an alternative product was superior:

“I took it before lunch. Lunch time, good! Post-lunch... uh-oh. Not so good. The discomfort is coming back. Let's have another IBgard. Waiting, waiting, waiting. No relief. None! I took a Heather's Peppermint Oil and poof! Within 5 minutes, no discomfort. No reflux. Nothing but relief! Heather's is working for me again! Yay, Heather!”

Stay up-to-date on our research reviews

Conclusion

IBgard is a well-formulated dietary supplement and we believe that it’s likely to relieve digestive symptoms. The manufacturer of this product has funded clinical trials showing it to be effective, and also showing that the supplement does not cause side effects.

We do not currently recommend IBgard due to the inclusion of a coloring ingredient that’s banned in the E.U. over safety concerns, and due to the inclusion of two artificial colors.

Online reviews of IBgard are relatively favorable, and either Walmart or Amazon currently has the best prices on the supplement.

IBgard was sued in 2021 over claims of false advertising, though we don’t find the lawsuit to bring to light any information that should be of concern to consumers.