So Low FODMAP Foods develop recipes to help reduce the intake of FODMAPs (Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides and Polyols).
Food contains many elements, including proteins, minerals, vitamins and carbohydrates.
FODMAPs are carbohydrate sugars that are poorly absorbed; many FODMAPs are poorly absorbed in all people, but not everyone suffers from symptoms. Common poorly absorbed FODMAPs contain excess FRUCTOSE, found in some fruits and vegetables; LACTOSE, found in dairy products; SUGAR POLYOLS- SORBITOL and MANNITOL, found in some fruits, vegetables and artificial sweeteners and FRUCTANTS and/or GOS, found in some fruits and vegetables, cereals/breads/snacks, drinks and supplements, nuts and seeds.
When food enters the small intestine and the FODMAPs are not absorbed, there can be an increase of water through the bowel and thus causing diarrhoea for some. Moving through the digestive tract to the large intestine these carbohydrate sugars ferment with the gut bacteria. This fermentation (which can also flow back up to the small intestine) can cause irritation to the gut with symptoms such as bloating and distention, stomach cramps, constipation and flatulence. These are typical symptoms of a condition commonly called IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and can vary in degrees, affecting 1 in 7 adults.Severe symptoms should always be checked out with your GP as there may be an underlying condition that needs treating; testing can be carried out for food allergies and sometimes a referral to a dietician.
Research into FODMAPs began at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia led by Professor Peter Gibson. This research provides evidence that lowering FODMAPs in the diet can improve IBS symptoms. Further information can be found at https://www.monashfodmap.com.
Those with severe symptoms and are referred to a dietician, the diet will involve a few weeks of strict restriction of FODMAPs followed by professional advice as to which foods (and how much) can be reintroduced. The dietician will ensure that you maintain a healthy balanced diet.
Note: This is not a 'fad' diet, nor is it a weight loss diet. It is a means of controlling symptoms that are uncomfortable and for some cause uncompromising restrictions to their lifestyle.
If your symptoms are mild and intermittent, but disrupt your lifestyle, you may find adjusting your homemade recipes, using low FODMAP ingredients, helps to ease the bloating, excess wind and stomach discomfort. Unless you have malabsorption of a specific group or groups of FODMAPs or food allergies, determined by medical testing, research shows that small quantities of some foods may be tolerated.
The diet should be used according to individual and personal tolerance.
See below for a handy checklist of high and low FODMAP foods...
...For a more comprehensive list, get the Monash FODMAP smartphone app!