The Low FODMAP Diet

The low FODMAP diet involves the restriction of poorly absorbed, short chain carbohydrates, collectively termed FODMAPs. This diet has been found to be an effective approach to the management of uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms related to IBS and other functional gut issues [1].

 So what are FODMAPs?

F -FERMENTABLE

O -OLIGOSACCHARIDES - Fructans and Galacto-oligosaccharides (Wheat, Rye, Barley, Onions, Garlic, Legumes)

D -DISACCHARIDES - Lactose (Milk, Yoghurt, Ice-Cream)

M -MONOSACCHARIDES - Fructose (Honey, Watermelon, Apples, Pears)

A -AND

P -POLYOLS- Sorbitol, Mannitol, Maltitol, Xylitol (Apples, Apricots, Cauliflower, Chewing gum)

 

What about pre-packaged foods?

Many food companies are now registering their products for FODMAP friendly accreditation. If you see this green logo (pictured below) on any food products then that product is suitable for consumption whilst following a low FODMAP diet. See what products are accredited by downloading the FODMAP Friendly App in the App store or visiting www.fodmapfriendlyfoods.com.

Where do I start?

If you suffer from uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, flatulence etc. then contact your GP who will help you with your symptom diagnosis. You may be referred to undergo breath hydrogen and methane tests, which are useful to identify individuals who can completely absorb a load of fructose and lactose so that FODMAP dietary restriction can be less stringent. Before commencing the low FODMAP diet you should see an Accredited Practising Dietitian who is trained in the area.

 

 

[1] Gibson PR, Shepherd SJ. Evidence-based dietary management of functional gastrointestinal symptoms: The FODMAP approach.J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2010 Feb; 25(2):252-8