Noticing the onset of stomach pains after eating my daily apple, I did a search “apple causing stomach pains” and was very surprised at what came up. It appears there are certain carbohydrate sugars, many found in fruits and veggies, which might not be digested properly, causing stomach pains and other GI symptoms.
“FODMAP is an acronym that stands for Fermentable Oligo-, Di- and Mono-saccharides, And Polyols. These are all technical ways of referencing certain types of carbohydrates (or sugars) — many of them healthy. Lots of people have a hard time digesting these types of carbohydrates, and they can become malabsorbed and/or create an environment in the gut for bacteria to ferment. All of this can wreak havoc on your GI tract and make for some very uncomfortable and possibly embarrassing symptoms.” (Source http://magazine.foxnews.com/food-wellness/10-healthy-foods-could-make-your-stomach-hurt)
The list of 10 common culprits include apples, watermelon, pears, yogurt, avocado, cauliflower, asparagus, white onions, multigrain bread, and honey.
As I ticked off the list, there are quite a few that I have problems with, mainly stomach cramping. Then I dug a little deeper to see what to do and found there is a FODMAP diet.
“The strategy of the low FODMAP diet is to eliminate all foods that contain these carbohydrates for six weeks and then reintroduce them slowly to determine which ones are associated with offending symptoms.”
Knowing the most common culprits is not enough, as there are other foods that can also cause symptoms. I also wanted to find out what foods do not have the offending sugars, in order to focus on them now that I need to change my diet up.
Dr. Bret Lashner of the Cleveland Clinics wrote a nice piece “Best and Worst Foods for IBS” which identifies which foods not to eat and which foods are great as substitutes.
There is also a very detailed pdf “Foods Suitable…. and Eliminate These Foods…” on a FODMAP diet written by IBSGroup.org.
Don’t be sad, as there are a lot of foods to choose from that won’t give you any GI symptoms and some sugars are acceptable as well! I’m so glad there is such great information available right at our fingertips!