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IBS and the Ultimate Low FODMAP Food Guide

by MOMA Foods(more info)

listed in ibs, originally published in issue 235 - January 2017

Food is very much an integral part of our daily lives, not only to keep ourselves in tip top condition and on the go, but to enjoy ourselves too. We often find ourselves dining out with family and friends, to enjoy each other’s company around a good quality meal.

For some people, however, food can become the enemy, especially when they develop stomach and bowel problems due to their diet. Irritable Bowel Syndrome affects around 20% of the population and can leave sufferers feeling tired and anxious about eating. However developments from recent research has helped to introduce a new diet, the low FODMAP diet, which can help those suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome by reducing the symptoms.

Find out more about Irritable Bowel Syndrome and the low FODMAP diet, and how it help reduce the aches and pains that come from the condition.  [FODMAP is a shortened term for fermentable, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols.]

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, often referred to as IBS, is a condition that affects an individual’s digestive system and sufferers are usually affected for quite some time - even a lifetime for many. Those who develop the condition tend to begin feeling the effects in their 20s or 30s;  women are twice as likely as men to suffer from IBS at some point in their life.

Although the symptoms of IBS can differ in term of their severity levels, they tend to consist of:

  • Stomach cramping
  • Diarrhoea
  • Constipation
  • Bloating
  • Fatigue

Symptoms usually appear over a period of time before disappearing, only to come back again after a while. This repeated cycle can cause a lot of stress for those suffering from the condition.

Causes of IBS

There is a lot of speculation surrounding the real cause of IBS, but many medical professionals believe that the condition is due to sensitivity in the stomach and bowel, which can cause digestive issues. There has also been some research into psychological influences playing a role in the development of IBS.

If you have been suffering from any of the symptoms above, in relatively short bursts for quite some time, speak to your doctor about any issues you have been experiencing. They should be able to determine from your symptoms, whether or not you have developed IBS as well as offer advice on how to lessen the annoyances it can bring.

Reducing the effect of IBS with a low FODMAP diet

Although IBS cannot be cured, a low FODMAP diet can help you to effectively manage the condition and its symptoms.

FODMAP is a shortened term for fermentable, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols, which are short chain sugar alcohols and carbohydrates found in a number of different foods in each of the food groups. Those who suffer from IBS can be prone to difficulty in digesting these particular foods.

A low FODMAP diet therefore, removes these foods from your diet, to then slowly reintroduce them one at a time, with a view to discover which foods are causing individuals their IBS symptoms. From this, IBS sufferers will be able to work out which foods they can and cannot enjoy, as well as keeping the IBS symptoms to a minimum.

Below is an infographic from MOMA Foods, highlighting the variety of foods that are safe to eat when carrying out a low FODMAP diet. It is recommended that you stick to the diet for at least three months, before reintroducing foods high in FODMAP, one at a time.

IBS Low Foodmap Guide

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About MOMA Foods

MOMA Foods are creators of delicious gluten-free porridge, as well as bircher muesli and smoothies that can be enjoyed at home, on the go or at work. For further information please visit www.momafoods.co.uk

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