The diet with the weird name may help your IBS symptoms – and has now become the new buzzword, featuring in two well-known female magazines this month (July 2013).
The FODMAP diet is has some proof that it helps IBS sufferers. Avoiding these foods seems to reduce bloating, gas, constipation, and abdominal pain in IBS sufferers.
These foods have short chain carbohydrates and therefore can be hard for your small intestine to absorb. So the food ends up being digested by bacteria in the large intestine, ie your colon. This can lead to extra water in your bowels, gas, bloating, diarrhoea, and other symptoms of IBS.
What’s behind the FODMAPs diet – how did it all start?!
A study by Gibson PR, Shepherd SJ, showed that a low FODMAP diet decreased “functional gut symptoms” for people with IBS, while a high in FODMAPs increased those symptoms. In other words, less FODMAPs consumed, less IBS symptoms for IBS sufferers.
To combat this Dr Sue Shepherd’s low FODMAP diet recommends the elimination of complex foods for about 8 weeks.
The NHS says that while the exact cause of IBS remains unclear, it is believed to be triggered by a range of factors including stress and issues with the immune system.
Sue has developed a dietary management approach which has revolutionised the management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (low FODMAP diet) – her pioneering research has contributed world-first information, and for which she was awarded the Gastroenterological Society of Australia’s Young Investigator of the Year Award in 2006.
Sue is also the director of a busy private dietetic practice (Shepherd Works), specialising in gastrointestinal nutritional conditions, such as coeliac disease and irritable bowel syndrome, employing twelve dietitians. See – http://shepherdworks.com.au/services/about-sue-shepherd
What does FODMAP stand for?
It is an acronym for…
All of these are carbohydrates.
1. Fermentable – as they ferment in our intestines.
2. Oligo-saccharides – are fructans and galacto-oligosaccharides.
3. Di-saccharides – are lactose.
4. Mono-saccharides– are fructose
5. Polyols– are Sugar Alcohols.
2. Fructans and galacto-oligosaccharides are poorly absorbed in all people so restriction of these helps most people with IBS symptoms.
Fructans can also be known as fructo-oligosaccharides and are chains of sugar fructose. In the real world this means wheat products, some vegetables i.e. onion and garlic and when they are added to processed foods and FOS, oligofructose or inulin.
E.g. (Artichokes (Globe), Artichokes(Jerusalem), Asparagus, Beetroot, Chicory, Dandelion leaves, Garlic (in large amounts), Leek, Onion (brown, white, Spanish, onion powder), Raddicio lettuce, Spring Onion (white part), Wheat (in large amounts), Rye (in large amounts), Inulin, Fructo-oligosaccharides.)
Galacto-oligosaccharides are chains of sugar glucose : beans and pulses.
E.g. (Legume beans, baked beans, kidney beans, bortolotti beans, Lentils, Chickpeas).
5.Polyols are sugar alcohols i.e. sorbitol and xylitol. These occur naturally in some fruits and some vegetables. They are also added as sweeteners to many low sugar products such as sugar free chewing gum, mints and ‘diet’ foods.
E.g. Apples, Apricots, Avocado, Cherries, Longon, Lychee, Nectarines, Pears , Plums, Prunes, Mushrooms, Sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, maltitol and Isomalt.
There are two further groups, Fructose and Lactose. These two groups are not malabsorbed in everybody with symptoms and breath tests can tell you if you have a problem.
3. Lactose is something we all know. It is found in animal milk and milk products.
E.g. Milk, icecream, custard, dairy desserts, condensed and evaporated milk, milk powder, yoghurt, margarine, soft unripened cheeses (eg. ricotta, cottage, cream, marscarpone).
4. Fructose can be found in large amounts in different foods especially in some fruit and honey. It is also added to many food products as a sweetener or flavour enhancer. So its time to start checking food labels in supermarket!!
E.g. Honey, Apples, Mango, Pear, Watermelon, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup Solids
These are,the main groups that when starting the Fodmap diet all sufferers must stay clear of for at least 6-8 weeks before entering the reintroduction stage.
Basically, the idea is to avoid all foods that are high Fodmap, the list is far too long for me to write on my blog!
Go to Dr. Sue Shepherd’s website, shepardworks.com, for info on HIGH FODMAP foods and this website is good too: http://lowfodmapsdiet.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/ListOfFodmapsFoods3.gif
However please, please go to your GP if you have any symptoms of IBS as this diet can really help and quite literally change your life! Ask for a referral to a dietician and insist on help for the Fodmap Diet. They will help you as an individual to help you get better and explain thoroughly what food you can eat, what you can’t, starter recipes to get you cooking good low Fodmap meals, snacks and brands that are good for you.
More Sciencey stuff!
IBS food and cooking simple
OTHER LINKS USED:
I have decided to write a post about IBS. I suffer from IBS and have done for 6 years. Ive had the blood tests, the scans, the other tests etc to see if it was anything else and it wasn’t; the only explanation for my symptoms is IBS.
I thought I had it under control by taking over the counter medications and anti-depressants when needed (see my post about the Gut and Brain connection).
This post was written by me and I have provided the links to the information I have taken from the internet. There are so many great websites out there so make sure you have a look! This is only a small chunk of information on IBS!
Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS is the name doctors have given to a collection of otherwise unexplained symptoms relating to a disturbance of the colon or large intestine. IBS is a “syndrome.” The word syndrome means a group of symptoms and signs that indicate a disease or health problem.
IBS is one of the most common problems of the digestive system – about 2 in 10 people in the UK have IBS and it’s twice as common in women than men. Women might be more willing to talk to their doctors about IBS Symptoms. Men, women and children all get IBS. Hormones play a part in IBS. Many women report a worsening of symptoms during menstruation.
IBS can develop at any age, but most people have their first symptoms between the ages of 20 and 35. When X-rays, blood tests, endoscopies and other diagnostic tests are carried out, the results do not reveal any obvious abnormality. For that reason IBS is often called ‘a functional disorder’ of the bowel; in other words, an disturbance in bowel function without any change in structure or obvious cause.
Most people with IBS find their symptoms an occasional nuisance but don’t need to see a doctor. However, for some people, the condition seriously affects their quality of life. If you find it difficult to cope with your symptoms, see your GP.
These symptoms may come and go – you may not have any symptoms for months and then have a sudden flare-up.
Other symptoms you may get if you have IBS include:
A similar range of symptoms are reported by patients with other medically unexplained illnesses, such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Functional Dyspepsia, suggesting they all might all be expressions of an alteration in sensitivity or irritability affecting the mind and the body.
No One Knows for Sure What Causes IBS.
At this point, no one has found one specific cause of IBS. But thanks to tireless work of countless researchers, we know a lot more about it, and what you can do to prevent symptoms of IBS.
One theory is that the intestines overreact to signals of stress or anxiety coming from the brain; the ‘nervous stomach’. Food sensitivities or food allergies can trigger an IBS attack. Finding and eliminating foods that don’t agree with you can make a dramatic difference.
Note that food sensitivities are not the same as allergies. You may not be “allergic” to a food, but it can still be a major cause of your IBS symptoms.
Your genetic make-up – you may inherit IBS
Bacterial Infections- inflammation of your bowel, for example an infection such as gastroenteritis
You may find it helpful to keep a food diary for two to four weeks to see if certain foods cause your symptoms. Always speak to your GP before changing your diet as advice may differ depending on your symptoms. If certain foods still seem to bring on your symptoms after trying this diet advice, it may help to see a dietitian.
Regular exercise is a good way to help reduce your symptoms. It helps keep your bowel movements regular and reduces stress. Aim to do a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day, at least five times a week.
If your symptoms are noticeably triggered by stress, try learning stress management or relaxation techniques.
If these self-help treatments don’t work, see your GP for advice. He or she can help you identify factors that may be making your IBS worse, and suggest other treatments.