Your Guide to Starting the Low FODMAP Diet
Are you overwhelmed with the low FODMAP diet? I have you covered with the basics of the low FODMAP diet plus a free, 7-day low FODMAP meal plan and low FODMAP grocery list to help you get started.
What is the low FODMAP diet?
The low FODMAP diet was developed for the treatment of some gastrointestinal conditions including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The term FODMAP is an acronym for Fermentable Oligo- Di- Mono-saccharides And Polyols. These are a group of short-chain carbohydrates that often cause symptoms in those with IBS.
The diet is similar to an elimination diet where the person with IBS starts by eliminating high FODMAP foods for a period of time. Then, when working with a registered dietitian, FODMAP-containing foods are slowly added back to the diet to determine which foods trigger symptoms. The diet is liberalized as much as possible to ensure nutrient needs are met while also creating a diet that’s not unnecessarily restrictive.
This process can take anywhere from eight to 14 weeks and is typically split into three phases*:
Low FODMAP diet. This phase typically lasts 2-6 weeks and involves removing high FODMAP foods from the diet to relieve symptoms. This is the most restrictive phase of the diet.
FODMAP reintroduction. This phase typically lasts 6-8 weeks and involves reintroducing high FODMAP foods to liberalize and personalize the diet.
FODMAP personalization. This is when the long-term diet is identified and maintained with a clear understanding of which foods cause symptoms.
*These phases have been adapted from Monash University.
What are FODMAPs?
Fermentable Oligo- Di- Mono-saccharides And Polyols (FODMAP) are short-chain carbohydrates found in a variety of foods including fruits, vegetables, dairy, grains, nuts, seeds, and processed foods. Foods within each group have varied amounts of FODMAPs.
The list below provides examples of foods high in FODMAPs. (Note: this list is not comprehensive of all foods containing FODMAPs)
Dried fruits: fig, pineapple, mango
Gluten-containing grains including wheat, barley, and rye
Beans & Legumes
Soy milk (soy beans)
Getting started with a low FODMAP diet
If you’ve recently been diagnosed with IBS or are just getting started with the low FODMAP diet, it’s important to take steps to set yourself up to be successful with the diet change. These tips can help you get started.
Low FODMAP meal planning tips
Identify your most eaten high FODMAP foods. Make a list so that you can reference it as you work through the diet change.
Identify low FODMAP food swaps. Once you have your list of high FODMAP foods you regularly eat you can start to identify lower FODMAP alternatives. For example, if you love cooking with garlic, swap in garlic-infused oil instead. Or if you typically eat pasta once per week, swap in a gluten-free pasta and continue with your favorite recipe (while also swapping out other high FODMAP ingredients).
Look through your pantry and fridge to identify which foods are high in FODMAPs and make a plan to donate them.
Know how to spot high FODMAP ingredients on food labels. Resources like Spoonful can offer guidance at the grocery store.
Use the low FODMAP grocery list below for inspiration when shopping for low FODMAP alternatives.
I’ve created a 7-day low FODMAP meal plan to help you take the first step in managing your IBS symptoms. Click here to download your free copy!
Sample Day from the 7-day Low FODMAP meal plan:
Breakfast: Strawberry Lactose-Free Yogurt Bowl with Orange
Lunch: Sweet & Spicy Noodle Bowl with a side of Grapes and Sunflower Seeds
Dinner: Pork, Veggies, and Baby Potatoes
Snack: Popcorn and Grapes
*Recipes and shopping list included in the 7-day low FODMAP meal plan
This easy, low FODMAP meal plan is simple to follow and features enjoyable recipes while also reducing food waste with smart ideas for how to cross-utilize ingredients. Plus, you’ll get a complete low FODMAP grocery list to accompany the recipes in the meal plan making it simple to shop for low FODMAP foods.
Low FODMAP Grocery List
A successful diet change requires having the foods you can eat available to you, so take the guesswork out of shopping with this versatile low FODMAP grocery list. Below are some quick ideas to stock your pantry:
Gluten-free English muffins
Gluten-free old-fashioned oats
Brown or white rice
Almond milk or lactose-free dairy milk
Chicken or Turkey
Canned Garbanzo beans
Fruits and Vegetables
Red bell peppers
Nuts and Seeds
Want more guidance?
I understand how daunting it can be to start the low FODMAP diet and know that if you’re currently experiencing IBS symptoms, you’re ready to find treatment fast. I work with people who have IBS and am currently accepting clients. Contact me today!