Our SIBO test is an at-home breath test.
The SIBO breath test measures the hydrogen and methane present in your breath over a three-hour period. While some clinics give you the option to do the test on-site, not many people want to sit in a waiting room for three hours.
Doing the test at home is easy, safe, and doesn’t affect the validity or accuracy of the results at all.
Because bacteria ferment carbohydrates and release hydrogen and methane as a by-product, if the gases are present in your breath over a certain level, we know that you have SIBO.
At the beginning of the test (and after you’ve given a baseline sample), you’ll drink a carbohydrate solution. As your bacteria get to work on fermenting it, 80% of the gases produced go through your intestines, but the other 20% is absorbed into your blood and ends up in your lungs—where you breathe it out.
Preparing for the SIBO test at home
Taking a SIBO test at home is easy. The test kit comes with full instructions that guide you through how to prepare.
Because we want to get the most accurate result, there are some things you need to avoid in the month before you take it. That’s because things like antibiotics and certain supplements affect the levels of bacteria in your small intestine, and skew your result.
4 weeks before the test
Finish taking any antibiotics. Talk to your GP if you are on long-term antibiotics.
1 week before the test
Stop taking any laxatives, if you can. Talk to your GP to confirm this is safe first.
1 day before the test
Avoid all complex carbohydrates and fermentable foods. These can interfere with the test results. You can read more about how and why to steer clear of these foods on the information in the test kit.
12 hours before the test
Fast and drink only water. Most people find it easy to do a SIBO breath test first thing in the morning, so they can fast overnight.
On the day of the test
Don’t smoke or exercise before or during the three-hour test period.
Make sure you follow the information on how to prepare for and take the test, to make sure your results are as accurate as possible.
You’ll begin by giving a baseline breath sample using the kit provided. Then you need to drink the sugary solution, and wait 30 minutes. After that, you’ll give your first real breath sample in a second tube.
Then repeat the process with the rest of the tubes for a total of 2.5 hours. You’ll end up with seven breath-filled tubes to send off to the laboratory.
When it’s finished, you can resume your normal diet and any supplement regime. You should get your results back within 14 working days.