If you’re living with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or gluten intolerance, you’ve probably heard mentions of ‘the low FODMAP diet’ from the internet, your friends, or your dietician. And you probably know FODMAPs stand for “fermentable oligo-, di-, and mono-saccharides and polyols.”
Unless you’re a food scientist, that doesn’t mean much. What do those words you can’t pronounce have to do with our stomach issues?
Well, a lot. FODMAPs are short-chain carbohydrates that are resistant to digestion, and if you have sensitivities to certain FODMAP groups, you’ll experience excessive gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and other fun symptoms.
Although not everyone is prone to FODMAP sensitivity, Monash University has learned it’s very common among IBS sufferers, and as such, is why more and more people with IBS are subscribing to a low FODMAP diet plan.
Now, there’s more evidence supporting that the low FODMAP diet could help with another common stomach issue – gluten intolerance.
We should start by saying that while a low FODMAP diet may be effective for those with gluten sensitivities, it’s not a solution for full-fledged celiac disease.
That being said, if you've consulted our list of foods high in FODMAPs, then you may’ve picked up on the fact certain gluten grain foods happen to be high FODMAP. In fact, researchers have identified a strong connection between the two.
According to low FODMAP diet research, wheat, rye, and barley intake needs to be restricted – but not for the same reasons a gluten-intolerant person needs to shy away from them. The culprit here is fructan, a carbohydrate that is considered high in FODMAPs, that IBS sufferers want to avoid. Both IBS sufferers and people with gluten intolerance can have small serving sizes of those grains, but larger portions will almost surely lead to discomfort.
Essentially, it’s all about portion control and knowing what’s safe to eat. The low FODMAP diet makes this easy, by providing dieters with guidelines that may be strict, but easy to follow.
Since food scientists are still figuring out how gluten intolerance works, and how it can affect people with IBS or gluten sensitivity, it can be difficult separating the symptoms of these two stomach conditions.
Many people with gluten sensitivities are misdiagnosed with IBS, and vice-versa. Since there is a lot of overlap between the two, it could be worth trying out the low FODMAP diet to see if it’s right for you! The low FODMAP diet is not a weight-loss plan, but a lifestyle diet that helps ease uncomfortable stomach symptoms for many people.
If you’re about to embark on your own low FODMAP diet journey, Fody Foods has everything you need to be successful – low FODMAP products, recipes, information, advice, and more!