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Low FODMAP Diet: What Is It and What Does it Do?

By HERWriter
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a low FODMAP diet, what it is and what it does Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Thinkstock

You may have heard of a low FODMAP diet, and wondered, not just whether it might be right for you, but also wondered what in the world it is.

FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols.

Well, perhaps that definition doesn't clarify things much.

That name contains a list of indigestible sugars that are found in many foods. Some people will experience IBS symptoms from these foods because their guts are sensitive to them.

Many foods that should be avoided or reduced in a low FODMAP diet are certain fruits, sweeteners, grains, vegetables and milk products.

According to Emedicine.net, a diet low in FODMAPs can bring some relief to many people who have irritable bowel syndrome reducing symptoms.

The diet is not considered a cure but it can ease the pain, gas, bloating and other IBS symptoms.

If you've been seen by a doctor and have been found not to have other conditions such as celiac disease, ovarian cancer and inflammatory bowel disease, you might want to consider a low FODMAP diet.

These carbohydrates ferment in the digestive process because they're not broken down sufficiently or absorbed in the small intestine. They then remain in an undigested state as they move through the bowel. Colonic bacteria ferment.

The unhappy result is bacterial overgrowth, bloating and gas.

Women going through menopause may be prone to increased bloating and gas, according to Dr. Christiane Northrup. Many women will find themselves unable to tolerate many foods they'd been able to eat without problems all their lives.

For some, a low FODMAP diet might be an answer.

Webmd.com recommended that you eliminate all foods containing lactose, fructose, fructans, sugar alcohols and galactans for a week or two to determine whether or not a low FODMAPS diet is for you. You may find relief comes with a matter of days.

To determine which if any of those initially eliminated foods are alright for you, reintroduce one at a time. This way you will be able to discover which foods are problems for you and which are acceptable.

A gluten-free diet is often a good idea since wheat contains fructans.

Add a Comment3 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

I think that the treatment of Eczema should be foremost on our minds at this day and age. Epiceram has the right idea.
Sgreenovich@gmail.com | http://epiceram-us.com/patient.html

December 16, 2013 - 3:43pm
EmpowHER Guest

Probiotic made my day.They help !!! and have so much to offer ,what I don't understand is why Doctors instead of meds don't study this and try to understand the up side.

March 14, 2013 - 12:01am
EmpowHER Guest

Before this article I had no Idea what a FODMAP was. Understanding the importance of one's body is vital to longevity. Looking at the number of things that will have to be elimenated from your diet may contribute to your overall better health. The Weight Loss section to this site will assist you in complimenting your overall health goals. Another site i review is http://harrisreview.com . This site also assists women in making better decisions about their health.

August 17, 2012 - 11:17pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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