The term FODMAP is an acronym, derived from "Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides And Polyols". Or easier said, these are short-chain carbs that move through your intestines and are resistant to digestion. Instead of being absorbed into your bloodstream, they reach the far end of your intestine where most of your gut bacteria reside.
Many foods that contain FODMAPs are considered very healthy, and some function like healthy prebiotic fibers, supporting your friendly gut bacteria. Therefore, people who can tolerate these types of carbs should not avoid them. However, for people with a FODMAP intolerance of foods high in these carbs, may suffer from unpleasant digestive issues, and it might be best to eliminate or restrict consumption.
If you are intolerant to these foods some of the symptoms may include;
gas bloating Diarrhea constipation stomach pain
If you frequently experience digestive upset that lowers your quality of life, FODMAPs should be on your list of top suspects.
Though a low-FODMAP diet may not eliminate all digestive problems, chances are high that it may lead to significant improvements, especially those who suffer with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and various other digestive disorders.
Foods to Avoid
Fruits: Apples, applesauce, apricots, blackberries, boysenberries, cherries, canned fruit, dates, figs, pears, peaches, watermelon
Sweeteners: Fructose, honey, high fructose corn syrup, xylitol, mannitol, maltitol, sorbitol
Dairy products: Milk (from cows, goats and sheep), ice cream, most yogurts, sour cream, soft and fresh cheeses (cottage, ricotta, etc.) and whey protein supplements. Vegetables: Artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, beetroot, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, garlic, fennel, leeks, mushrooms, okra, onions, peas, shallots
Legumes: Beans, chickpeas, lentils, red kidney beans, baked beans, soybeans
Wheat: Bread, pasta, most breakfast cereals, tortillas, waffles, pancakes, crackers, biscuit Other grains: Barley and rye
Beverages: Beer, fortified wines, soft drinks with high-fructose corn syrup, milk, soymilk, and fruit juices
Better Food Choices
Meats, fish and eggs: These are well tolerated unless they have added high-FODMAP ingredients like wheat or high-fructose corn syrup
All fats and oils
Most herbs and spices Nuts and seeds: Almonds, cashews, peanuts, macadamia nuts, pine nuts, sesame seeds (not pistachios, which are high in FODMAPs)
Fruits: Bananas, blueberries, cantaloupe, grapefruit, grapes, kiwi, lemons, lime, mandarins, melons (except watermelon), oranges, passionfruit, raspberries, strawberries
Sweeteners: Maple syrup, molasses, stevia and most sugar alcohols
Dairy products: Lactose-free dairy products, hard cheeses and aged softer varieties like brie and camembert
Vegetables: Alfalfa, bell peppers, bok choy, carrots, celery, cucumbers, eggplant, ginger, green beans, kale, lettuce, chives, olives, parsnips, potatoes, radishes, spinach, spring onion (only green), squash, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, yams, water chestnuts, zucchini
Grains: Corn, oats, rice, quinoa, sorghum, tapioca
Beverages: Water, coffee, tea, etc.
It’s recommended to eliminate all high-FODMAP foods for a few weeks, then reintroduce some of them one at a time. It’s best to work with the help of a qualified health professional. There are also many books on the subject of a low FODMAP diet.
Keep in mind that the purpose of such a diet is not to completely eliminate FODMAPs — which is extremely difficult, but more to decrease the amount you consume.