irritable-bowel-syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome and FODMAPS

Irritable Bowel Syndrome and FODMAPS

If you have struggled with GI symptoms for years, you may start to think this is the only way to feel. Have you undergone what feels like hundreds of tests to figure out what is wrong, only to hit a dead end? This “dead end” could actually be Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a complex digestive disorder. It interferes with the quality of life of millions of people around the world. Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome include abdominal pain, bloating, and gas. These symptoms can range from moderate and intense pain and be constant or come on in waves. You may experience one, two, or all symptoms, however, there is rarely an identical case from person to person.

Unfortunately, the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome are not unique to this disorder. It is important to first rule out other GI issues in order to determine the accurate cause of your symptoms. These conditions include, but are not limited to celiac disease, small intestinal bacteria overgrowth, Crohn’s disease, and diverticulitis.

There is no blood test or biopsy that can determine an official diagnosis of IBS. Because of this, it is often diagnosed when the above diseases are ruled out.

I Have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Now what?

Individualized nutrition therapy with a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist can significantly lessen symptoms through identification and restriction of trigger foods. This is done by following the Low-FODMAP diet guidelines.

The Low-FODMAP diet is an elimination diet that restricts a set of small chain fermentable carbohydrates. These carbohydrates are rapidly digested and poorly absorbed in the gut, thus provoking excess fluid and gas in the bowels of many people with IBS.

If you haven’t already, google it. What did you find? I bet you found a big long list of foods you can’t eat right? It may look scary but if followed accurately you can notice alleviation of symptoms within as little as 2 weeks! Food & Nutrition Magazine quoted Kate Scarlata RDN, LDN, a Low FODMAP diet expert:

“The low-FODMAP diet has many nuances, and online resources are often outdated, making the IBS patient confused and frustrated. The role of the dietitian is to be well-prepared with the latest and most accurate low-FODMAP diet research to successfully guide the patient with this effective nutrition intervention.”

What Are the FODMAPs?

FODMAP is an acronym that stands for:

  • Fermentable
  • Oligosaccharides (gluten, legumes, certain fruit and vegetables)
  • Disaccharides (lactose, milk sugars)
  • Monosaccharides (excess fructose such as honey and fruit)
  • and
  • Polyols (sugar alcohols)

Phases of Low-FODMAP Diet

Elimination Phase

In this phase, you will work with a Registered Dietitian and remove all high FODMAP foods from your diet. You will create a meal plan that works best for you. This phase is the hardest part. However, you should start feeling better so the sacrafice is worth it!

Reintroduction Phase

This phase takes the most time. One by one, you will start to reintroduce the high FODMAP foods and monitor your symptoms along the way. For many people, it is one group that triggers people with IBS. However, there are instances where you may have to avoid a couple groups. It is also imperative to keep track of symptoms related to amounts of the fodmaps consumed. One slice of bread may not cause any GI distress but if you grab that extra slice, the bloating and constipation could reappear.

Are you ready to improve your Irritable Bowel Symptoms?

After reading this post, does any or all of this apply to you? Are you ready to get started? You do not have to tackle this alone! Schedule a FREE Clarity Call with me to learn more about how I can help.