The low FODMAP diet is a 3 phase dietary protocol that is used for those with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This diet eliminates fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols (FODMAPs), then challenges them back in to determine personal tolerance. FODMAPs are common symptom triggers for those with IBS, so this can be an effective strategy for managing symptoms. Read more about the low FODMAP diet here.
A major mistake many make when starting the low FODMAP diet is jumping into it unprepared, which can cause overwhelm and frustration with the diet itself. Many times this can lead to abandoning the diet before seeing the results one may be looking for. Another effect of jumping in unprepared is poor nutrition, due to the restrictions involved during the elimination phase.
Instead of making these mistakes as you consider this approach, here are 3 ways to kickstart the low FODMAP diet so you can feel confident and get the results you want.
- Learn your food lists
Knowing what you’re eliminating and what you will be eating before you jump in is important. This gives you time to think about substitutions for your favorite recipes or foods, feel confident reading labels when you go grocery shopping, and feel more comfortable with how the lists work so they’re easy to use when you are out.
The most reputable lists to follow are from Monash University. Their low FODMAP diet app is a great resource for up to date information on the FODMAP content for different foods.
2. Makeover your pantry (call out to Belli Welli here for snacks)
There’s nothing worse than opening your pantry when it’s time for a meal or snack, and only seeing foods you can’t have. During the elimination phase, you can avoid frustration by doing a makeover in your pantry, or at least a section just for you.
This means choosing low FODMAP alternatives of your favorite sauces, spice mixes, and snacks. When you stock up on things that are FODMAP-friendly, you will feel more at ease when it’s time to put together a meal. You’ll also have more success with the full protocol.
Some of my favorite snacks to keep stocked:
- Low FODMAP nuts and seeds
- Rice cakes
- Peanut butter packs
- Dark chocolate
- Low FODMAP bars
BelliWelli makes delicious gluten-free, dairy-free, low-sugar, and certified low FODMAP bars for the perfect snack section of your pantry.
3. Find a dietitian for support
The low FODMAP diet has shown to be highly effective for those with IBS, under the care of a trained dietitian. A dietitian can help you feel more prepared with the full protocol, including the challenge and personalization phases, and help you meet your nutrition needs throughout the process.
To ensure they’re the best fit, ask for their experience with the low FODMAP diet and any conditions you may have that would require more personalized care. Monash University has a FODMAP-trained dietitian directory you can use to find the right fit for you!
As you start the low FODMAP diet, try these 3 kick-starting tips for success and share with a friend!