IBS, i.e., irritable bowel syndrome is a condition and not a disease. The symptoms of IBS are constipation, bloating, diarrhea, cramping, and gas.
Around 1 in 5 Americans have this condition. When it comes to treatment, there are different types available such as drugs, diet, stress reduction, and exercise.
Although IBS and diabetes are not related to their etiology, they have 2 things in common. The first thing is that both conditions are prevalent among the population. Hopkins Medicine
For example, IBS affects around 15 percent of Americans, and on the other hand, diabetes affects 4 percent. According to crude estimation, 150,000 Australians have both conditions.
Furthermore, many individuals with IBS are likely to be at a big risk of obtaining diabetes. The second thing is that diet is crucial when it comes to managing these conditions.
However, thanks to Australian researchers, there is a new approach available that might provide relief. This approach or treatment is known as the “low-FODMAP diet.” (2)
What are FODMAPs?
Most people are aware that carbs affect blood sugar. When it comes to carbs, there are many different types; this includes a group known as fermentable short-chain carbs.
FODMAPs is an acronym for “fermentable, oligo-, di- and mono-saccharides and polyols.” This particular group is used as food or fermented by gut bacteria. Health
Fermentation can lead to pain, cramping, bloating, and gas. This approach pulls water into the gut, which can lead to diarrhea. Certain individuals are more affected by these symptoms in comparison to others.
What Foods Have FODMAPs?
- Candy, prunes, sugar-free gum, apricots, and cherries (polyols);
- Dairy foods and milk (lactose);
- Molasses, apples, honey, and apples (fructose);
- Garlic, onions, and wheat (fructans);
- Lentils, kidney beans, and chickpeas (galactooligosaccharides).
Low FODMAP Diet
In case we have irritable bowel syndrome and none of the treatments helped us obtain the necessary relief, we should consider the low FODMAP diet.
Just like many other diets, this diet is also restrictive. Therefore, we need to balance the nutrients for our overall health. If we eliminate dairy foods and milk, we need to obtain vitamin D and calcium from another place.
This might include consuming lactose-free milk, certain kinds of cheeses, and taking supplements. Also, with this diet, the intake of fiber might be below.
Therefore, it is crucial to obtain fiber from good sources such as strawberries, oatmeal, blueberries, and rice bran.
What to Consume on Low FODMAP Diet?
Seeds and Nuts: sesame seeds, almonds, pine nuts, almonds, and pumpkin seeds.
Vegetables: carrots, green beans, tomato, zucchini, lettuce, and cucumber.
Fruits: grapes, bananas, cantaloupe, and oranges.
Grains: crackers, rice, pasta, oats, gluten-free bread, quinoa, and oats.
Dairy Foods: hard cheeses, lactose-free yogurt, and milk.
Protein: tofu, meat, fish, and poultry.
Cooking with garlic and onion is forbidden; their alternatives are scallions and chives. Another alternative is to cook with onion or garlic in oil but to remove them before consuming the meal.
This diet is very similar to the gluten-free diet. The best thing to do is to work with a gastroenterologist or dietitian who knows more about this treatment. In case someone has IBS, they should make sure to consult a doctor about this low-FODMAP approach.