But once you get the hang of it, and figure out which particular FODMAPs make your belly ache, your diet can become more varied again, says Patsy:
You may find that only one or two types of FODMAPs are responsible for most of your symptoms. In the end, most people find they can still have their favorite high-FODMAP foods in moderation. For example, if you discover high-FODMAP grains are a problem area but pizza is your favorite food, it is up to you to decide how to handle it: choose pizza with a thinner crust; have fewer pieces; use a wheat-free crust; eat less other FODMAPs at that meal.
I really like that approach; anything that lets me have the foods I want (in moderation) sounds good to me. I’ve already been eating mostly gluten-free for about two years now, but I have a sinking suspicion that lactose is another carbohydrate that makes my gut angry. When I contacted Elise, she commented:
The emotional side of eliminating FODMAPs is a whole other issue. Avoiding foods I used to love comes with a complicated mix of feelings - on one hand I miss the taste of real bread with hummus, and yet, I definitely don’t miss the way it made my gut feel after. At all.
So what can you do if you want to try a low-FODMAP diet? Talk to a nutritionist, a dietitian, or your doctor, for sure, but I’d also recommend doing as much reading as possible on the subject. Here’s a helpful chart that gives you a more specific idea of some of the high FODMAP foods:
You can also check out Patsy’s website, or Elise’s FODMAPs-specific blog; she actually just developed a vegetarian low-FODMAPS cookbook. Registered dietitian Kate Scarlata also has a blog where she posts yummy FODMAPs-friendly recipes, like ice cream made with coconut milk. FODMAPs just may be a viable option for you to finally end your yucky IBS symptoms, but still enjoy the foods you love to eat.