What Exactly Is The Low Fodmap Diet?
The low FODMAP diet is almost a buzz word in the wellbeing community, but what exactly is the diet, what are FODMAPs and who is it for?
Who should follow a low FODMAP diet?
The low FODMAP diet is not for everyone. It is recommended that people who suffer from poor digestive symptoms and those diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) follow the diet plan.
The diet works by supporting the growth of good gut bacteria – which if you already have and then follow the diet and actually cause you more harm.
What are IBS symptoms?
People with IBS usually suffer with the following symptoms:
- Stomach pain/ cramps
- Urgent need to move your bowels
They can be a singular symptom or multiple at once. These can also change over time depending on your situation.
What is FODMAP?
FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo, Di, Mono-saccharides And Polyols.
For all of us non-scientists, that stands for foods that trigger digestive problems.
It’s important to note, even if you follow this diet for IBS, it should not be a long term solution for you due to some high FODMAP foods have important nutritional value.
The diet involves removing food high in FODMAPs for a limited time – usually 4-6 weeks – and then slowly re-introducing them one at a time to see what food trigger your gut.
Image Source/ Woman’s Day
What food should I avoid on the low FODMAP diet?
Unfortunately, there is a lot of food that needs to be avoided if you decide to follow the low FODMAP diet.
The main foods to remove from your diet are garlic, onion, any sugar free sweets or drinks, limit your intake of dairy products and a multitude of fruits and vegetables.
The aim of removing high FODMAP foods is for symptom improvement. By giving the gut a rest or ‘reset’, you can then see more accurately which foods do aggravate your small intestinal lining.
To make life slightly easier, Australia’s Monash University have created an app specifically for those who follow the low FODMAP diet so you know exactly what to eat when on the go.
Why is there so much mixed information?
Irritable bowl syndrome is very tricky to diagnose. It can often be confused with other gastrointestinal disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease. Hence, it is important that you seek medical advice before starting the low FODMAP diet.
There are bloggers and online platforms such as The IBS Dietitian on Instagram that make it easier and less scary to integrate in your life.
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