Work with a registered dietitian and health coach to determine if eliminating or limiting these foods may help you better manage your condition.
The Low FODMAP diet is a three-step diet that people with Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, may follow in order to discover their specific food triggers.
FODMAP stands for:
Oligosaccharides (fructans and GOS)
Each of these are a type of carbohydrate known to trigger IBS symptoms. That’s why eliminating them or limiting your intake may help you gain better control of your condition.
Foods to Avoid on a Low FODMAP Diet
Before you get started on a low FODMAP diet, it’s important to understand which types of foods are high in FODMAPs—as those are the foods you’ll need to avoid.
Start with this list:
Oligosaccharides. This includes both fructans and GOS, which are found in a variety of foods and can contribute to gas. Foods high in oligosaccharides can be found in most food groups, including:
- Grains, like breads, barley, cereals, and pasta
- Vegetables, like artichoke, Brussels sprouts, garlic, and onion
- Fruits, like ripe bananas, grapefruit, raspberries, and watermelon
- Legumes, like black beans, kidney beans, lima beans, and soybeans
- Nuts, like almonds, cashews, and pistachios
Oligosaccharides can also be found in other miscellaneous foods and beverages, ranging from carob to certain types of teas, such as oolong and chamomile tea.
Disaccharides. This primarily includes foods that are high in lactose, which can both contribute to gas and pull water into the gut. Foods high in lactose mainly include dairy products, such as:
- Mostly Soft Cheeses
- Ice cream
Monosaccharides. This includes foods that contain excess fructose, which can also pull water into the gut. Foods high in fructose often include sweet foods, like fruit and sweeteners, but they can also be found in certain vegetables. That includes:
- Sweeteners, like agave, high fructose corn syrup, and honey
- Fruits, like apples, cherries, mango, and watermelon
- Vegetables, like artichokes, asparagus, and snap peas
Excess fructose can also be found in certain alcoholic drinks (rum, cider and sherry are high in FODMAPs; beer, whiskey, gin, vodka and red or white wine are low), including spirits like rum.
Polyols. Also known as “sugar alcohols,” polyols pull water into the gut. They’re often found as additives in sugar-free gum and candy, but can also be found in many fruits and vegetables:
- Fruits, like apples, apricots, cherries, lychee, and peaches
- Vegetables, like cauliflower, corn, mushrooms, snow peas, and sweet potatoes
- Sweeteners, like sorbitol, mannitol, and xylitol
Working With a Dietitian
Following the Low FODMAP diet is much more complicated than just limiting or eliminating these foods from your eating plan. For example, you may find that certain high FODMAP foods may actually be okay to consume in smaller portion sizes. There are also a number of foods listed above that can be safely consumed on the Low FODMAP diet in certain amounts. That’s why it’s important to work closely with your Registered Dietitian, who can help you guide you through the process.