Are you struggling with abdominal pain, cramping, pain bloating, gas, diarrhea, or constipation? If yes, these are the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS is a gastrointestinal disorder that affects the person's large intestine in the long term. It is crucial to managing irritable bowel syndrome IBS in the long term. So, before your symptoms get worse, it's better to take medical advice. The doctor usually asked people with IBS to follow a low fodmap diet. You might be wondering, "what is a low fodmap diet?" Well, this blog has the answers, so stop pressuring yourself. Sit on your couch, have a cappuccino, and enjoy this perfect piece about a low fodmap diet.
What is the low fodmap diet?
Fodmap stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols. When foods contain these substances, they are known as high fodmap foods. FODMAP foods have a specific type of carbohydrate and sugar that cause digestive symptoms in sensitive people. It's good for them to avoid high fodmap foods and switch to a low-fodmap diet.
The low fodmap diet is a short-term diet plan where high fodmap foods are restrictive. It is a method to find out and replace specific foods that trigger symptoms. The low fodmap benefits people with Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other gastrointestinal diseases.
So, we have composed a list of foods to make it easier for you:
Vegetables: Low fodmap vegetables include carrots, celery, bean sprouts, bell peppers, radishes, eggplant, tomatoes, kale, spinach, cucumber, zucchini, and pumpkin.
Nuts: You can have low fodmap nuts like almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, pecans, and walnuts.
Proteins: You need protein for growth and development, but you can eat only these food items; chicken, lamb, eggs, fish, pork, tempeh, prawns, and tofu.
Fruit: Fruits that you can include in your low fodmap diet are raspberries, blueberries, pineapple, kiwi, guava, limes, starfruit, grapes, and strawberries.
Whole grains and starches: Eat white and brown rice, lentils, oats, corn, quinoa, and potatoes.
Seeds: You can have sesame, pumpkin, sunflower seeds, and linseeds.
Dairy: You can have lactose-free milk, mozzarella cheeses, and greek yogurt.
Drinks: Don't drink market available processed drinks like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Thumbs Up, etc. It is better to avoid alcohol also. You can have water and peppermint tea.
Oils: Olive oil and coconut oil are good when you look for low fodmap foods.
Spices: You cannot overlook spices. They can also trigger symptoms. So, a low fodmap diet can include cumin, cardamom, soy, saffron, paprika, cinnamon, fish sauce, coriander, mustard, pepper, sauce, ginger, salt, wasabi powder, and white rice vinegar.
List of high fodmap foods that you should avoid:
Vegetables: High fodmap vegetables include mushrooms, garlic, onions, shallots, asparagus, beans, and scallions.
Fruits: Fruits that you should avoid are blackberries, prunes, mango, watermelon, dates, pears, peaches, and avocados.
Protein: Breaded meats, Breaded fish, meats served with garlic or onion-based sauces, battered meats come under high fodmap foods.
Nuts: Almonds (if you eat in excess), pistachios, cashews, and avocados are the foods triggering the IBS symptoms
Whole grains and starches: High fodmap foods like wheat and gluten-based bread, rye, pastries, muffins, and pasta should be avoided.
Benefits of low fodmap diet
Studies have shown that a low fodmap diet benefits people with IBS.
A low fodmap diet gives relief from the pain associated with IBS:
Once you start your low fodmap diet plan, you will start getting relief from pain and discomfort. It's pretty challenging to live with IBS, especially without a proper diet plan. It is like a cricket match where you don't know where the next ball will hit. Some days are fine, but then again, you start feeling discomfort (because you ate garlic or other high fodmap foods). The low FODMAP diet plan helps bring down your pain and discomfort levels as close to zero.
It reduces bloating issues:
It may be a digestive problem if you get a bloated stomach after eating. For such people, a low FODMAP diet is a savior. This diet enables them to pass through your digestive system properly without trapping air along the way by eliminating the foods that cause bloat. You will feel like someone suddenly bursts the bubble inside you, but in the best way, and you start feeling light.
It improves the quality of life:
Due to severe digestive issues, people with IBS start feeling zero quality of life. It impacts this social life and their work performances also. Studies indicate that a low fodmap diet improves the quality of life by reducing the symptoms of severe digestive issues. Once the symptoms are reduced, the person feels happy, and their stress level reduces also.
It lessens constipation
If you are suffering from IBS-C and IBS-M, constipation can be a common concern. But no worries, a low fodmap will help you out. The low FODMAP diet regulates your system, and things start moving once again. Following a low fodmap diet means spending more time exploring the outside world and less in the washroom.
It reduces instances of diarrhea
IBS-D or IBS-M symptoms include diarrhea. People find it problematic to cope up with it. It is crucial to eliminate those foods that are triggering the symptoms. A low fodmap diet can work to lower instances of diarrhea. Eliminating particular food is one of the significant benefits of the low fodmap diet plan.
Can everyone follow a low fodmap diet?
This diet is not for everyone. It is a unique diet plan designed for people with IBS. If you start following it without any consultation, it may do more harm than good.
In a low fodmap diet, we have to eliminate various probiotics, and it harms your intestinal bacteria, which directly impacts your overall health.
Follow this diet if you have
- Abdominal distress, and bloating.
- Constipation, bouts of diarrhea.
- Less frequent bowel movements,
- Haven't reacted to stress management strategies.
- First-line dietary advice doesn't work for you- for instance, modifying your meal size and limiting your alcohol intake, caffeine intake, spicy foods, and other common trigger foods.
- Suffering from fatigue and difficulty sleeping
- Anxiety and depression
A low fodmap diet is also beneficial to Hashimoto's patients. They can also follow this diet with advice from their healthcare provider.
How Fodmap is helpful for thyroid patients?
Do you know thyroid disease can cause similar gastrointestinal symptoms to IBS or vice versa? In both disorders, gut functionalities slow down and cause various issues. The digestive symptoms of hypothyroidism are constipation, less frequent bowel movements, bouts of diarrhea, abdominal distress, and bloating. The gastrointestinal symptoms in IBS and thyroid disease often coincide, so a low Fodmap diet can also help to ease the symptoms in thyroid patients.
According to one study, 30 percent of 2000 people with Hashimoto's felt better when they were on a low FODMAP diet. It was believed that many people with Hashimoto’s have SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth), which is often a stimulus for IBS. And a low FODMAP diet helps to improve IBS symptoms. SIBO is associated with both conditions, hypothyroidism, and IBS.
The low fodmap diet is an exceptional way to deal with IBS issues. This diet executes in three stages and is continuous for up to 8 weeks to see the results, but unfortunately, every person with IBS doesn't respond to the diet. We eliminate the various foods in the low fodmap diet, leading to weight loss. But never use this diet as a weight loss diet for yourself. It can do more harm to you. If anyone wants to start this diet, they must check with their healthcare professional to make a plan that can help manage their symptoms while satisfying their nutrient requirements.