Most people complain of gas, bloating, stomach pain or reflux after eating. In this article, we will discuss the source of this and what the FODMAP Diet is about.
FODMAP is an abbreviated form of the words “Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols”. These are short-chain carbohydrates which are resistant to digestion. In other words, most FODMAPs go through the intestines unchanged. Intestinal bacteria fed with FODMAPs produce hydrogen gas, which may cause digestive symptoms in sensitive individuals such as flatulence, bloating, stomach cramps, abdominal pain, diarrhea and constipation.
FODMAPs can be generally classified as fructose, lactose, fructans, galactans and polyeles:
Fructose: It is found in many fruits and vegetables as simple sugar.
Lactose: Milk and dairy products consist of it.
Fructans: Grains such as wheat, rye and barley contain fructans.
Galactans: Exists in large amounts in legumes.
Polyols: Sugar alcohols found in some fruits and vegetables and generally used as sweeteners.
Carbohydrates with high FODMAP content may have a prebiotic effect. It also shows an effect to increase calcium absorption. However, on the other hand, it may slow the absorption in the small intestine or cause rapid bacterial growth in the large intestine as a result of rapid fermentation. Conditions such as unwanted abdominal pain, bloating and cramping can occur. These symptoms indicate a digestive system disorder.
Low FODMAP Diet
According to a study, following a low FODMAP diet, the complaints of individuals who experienced irritable bowel syndrome reduced. In this diet, foods with high FODMAP content are removed from the diet for 6-8 weeks. Later, these foods are added to the diet program gradually and are checked which foods cause ailments such as gas, bloating and stomach pain. Remember that these symptoms may differ from person to person. The food that causes discomfort in one person may not show the same effect in another person. In this way, you can identify foods that cause discomfort and avoid eating them.
However, you should note that; low FODMAP diet may be poor in terms of fiber sources. So, this may increase the need for probiotic supplements in the long term. Reducing iron, folate, zinc and natural antioxidant intake can lead to various deficiencies in the body. For these reasons, it is not a type of diet that can be applied for a long time.
Note: Do not perceive FODMAP as a weight loss diet. There is no problem in consuming the carbohydrates in FODMAP diet as long as you do not feel any discomfort. In other words, if you do not have any digestive and intestinal problems when you consume these carbohydrates, you do not need to follow the FODMAP diet. However, if you have any other health problems, we do not recommend you starting this type of diet without consulting your doctor.