Low FODMAPs is a short term diet protocol that can be implemented with a healthcare practitioner to improve digestive symptoms in some individuals.
FODMAP is an acronym for Fermentable, Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides And Polyols. These are short-chain carbohydrates (sugars) that can be rapidly fermented in the digestive tract and can be poorly absorbed in some individuals.
A low FODMAP diet is sometimes used in individuals with IBS, IBD and other digestive complaints.
The symptoms it is used to try and alleviate include:
- changes in bowel habits
- abdominal pain or discomfort
- excessive flatulence
- abdominal bloating and distension
- fatigue or weakness
Some examples of FODMAP rich foods include:
- dairy rich foods
- soy milk
This is a very small list and there are many many more examples of foods on the list.
How is it used?
Naturopaths occasionally may use a low FODMAP diet (note the use of the word low - we never eliminate all FODMAP foods) to support someones digestive function and reduce the burden whilst undertaking a gut healing protocol.
A low FODMAP diet is recommended for only a short period of 4-6 weeks as FODMAP rich foods are also the foods your gut microbes need to feed off to support your gut health and overall health as we are finding out!
Once the 4-6 weeks is complete, a re-introduction phase is implemented and ongoing gut-healing is undertaken.
Naturopaths have a wide range of resources for supporting you through this time including recipes, other diet and lifestyle recommendations, gut healing support and tips and tricks to make this period as easy as possible!
**It is strongly recommended that before trying a low FODMAP diet, you seek the advice of a healthcare practitioner and that you support gut healing throughout the process. It is not enough to eliminate the FODMAP rich foods alone without supporting gut healing and receiving diet advice throughout this time. **