If you suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or other gastrointestinal distress, then you may have heard about FODMAPs. FODMAPs is an acronym that stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols. These multi-syllabic words sound more complicated than they are. FODMAPs are simple and complex sugars that don’t break down in guts that are sensitive or have IBS. Instead of breaking down in the digestive tract, they go through the small intestine and emerge in the form of bloating, abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Here’s a breakdown of the top five things that you need to know about FODMAPs:
Foods That Contain FODMAPs
Various forms of foods contain FODMAPs. FODMAPs aren’t necessarily bad for you, but they can cause various levels of discomfort for those that suffer from a form of IBS.
You can find FODMAPs in the following food groups:
Fruits: Stone fruits (peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots, cherries), as well as apples and pears and fruit juice concentrates.
Veggies: Vegetables that are known for causing gas contain FODMAPs. These foods include onions and garlic, pulses (beans and lentils) and brassicas (cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli and sprouts).
Dairy: For those that don’t produce lactase, an enzyme necessary to digest lactose, which is found in lactose-containing dairy items, dairy may create digestive issues such as gas, bloating and diarrhea.
Grains: Wheat products with FODMAPs may also create digestive issues. However, gluten is not necessarily the culprit for those that have issues digesting wheat.
Sweeteners: High FODMAP sweeteners include the sugar alcohols (isomalt, maltitol, mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol (found in sugar-free gum, candy and some medicines), agave, high fructose corn syrup and honey.
FODMAPs Aren’t the Cause of IBS
While many IBS sufferers also have sensitivity to FODMAPs, it’s important to know that the cause of IBS and FODMAP sensitivity is probably due to improper levels of bacterial growth in the gut. Certain bacterial strains help to boost gut health, but for people suffering from digestive issues, the wrong types of bacteria may be contributing to symptoms.
Low FODMAP Diets Can Help
Although it may seem that digestive issues are caused by numerous factors, low FODMAP diets have been found to show relief for those that suffer from sensitive guts. In addition to following a low FODMAP diet, many doctors will also recommend using Probiotics to help introduce good flora into the intestinal tract.
Low FODMAP Diet Plans
Various dietitians have created diet plans to benefit patients that suffer from digestive issues. These diet plans generally revolve around avoiding all types of FODMAPs for a period of time before gradually reintroducing them in order find out which FODMAPs are causing problems. Visit www.ibsfree.net or www.katescarlata.com for more information on low FODMAP diet plans.