Important news for people suffering symptoms of IBS. Australian researchers have found that a low FODMAP diet might help to ease symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), though it may not work for everyone.
A FODMAP diet eating plan is very low in some natural sugars so it’s tough to stick with, but if you do manage to restrict foods like rye, wheat, white breasts and pasta, apples, watermelon, ice cream and honey, you may well see a reduction in your bloating, gas, abdominal pain and other disruptive, uncomfortable symptoms.
IBS affects almost 55 million, mostly female, Americans and brings symptom like cramping, bloating and stomach distension, stomach pain, excess gas, nausea, diarrhea, constipation and fatigue. No one knows what causes IBS, but stress and some foods/drinks are known to make symptoms worse. The good news is that while IBS makes you feel awful, it does not do permanent harm, or lead to more serious disease.
Most patients can control symptoms reasonably well with a combination of eating right, stress management and taking prescribed medications as directed. But for some, IBS can be disabling, keeping them from work, social events or travel.
A number of studies, though small, have shown benefits to the FODMAP eating plan according to Peter Gibson, MD a professor of gastroenterology at Australia’s Monash University.
In a study published earlier this year, more than 80% of the 43 subjects who followed a low FODMAP diet did feel less bloating, stomach pain and gas. This compared to only 50% to 60% of those who followed other eating advice. Gibson and the diet developer, Sue Shepherd, PhD who is a Victoria Australia dietitian, spoke about the eating plan at the annual meeting of the American College of Gastroenterology.
Both Gibson and Shepherd believe that many more foods (those with natural FODMAP sugars) can also trigger the IBS symptoms.
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Reduce Disabling Symptoms Of IBS With This… Continued…
FODMAP is an abbreviation for food molecules – Fermentable, Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols – all poorly absorbed by patients with IBS. When these foods are eaten they pull extra water into the stomach, bringing on the discomforts of IBS. Gibson believe that it is the sensitivity of the digestive system that may well determine who gets IBS and who doesn’t.
Long-term safety of the FODMAP diet has yet to be established, though it is gaining support in the U.S. healthcare community. Many aren’t sure if it is nutritionally sound enough, though Shepherd says this should not be a problem as long as the restricted foods are replaced with ones that add up to the same nutrition value.
Because the FODMAP diet is complex, you need to have a thorough exam to be sure you don’t have another condition besides IBS. Once you’re sure symptoms of ibs are your problem, you need to find a dietitian trained in low FODMAP eating so that you follow a plan that’s tasty and nutritionally sound as well. Eating this way is a big commitment, for both the patient and their family, but it may well prove to be a very helpful treatment for those whose symptoms are so severe that they interfere with daily activities.