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Our Low FODMAP Guide

Updated: Apr 11, 2023

A low Fodmap diet is recognized as the most effective way to manage IBS with diet.

The low FODMAP diet is a temporary elimination diet; it is not meant to be a permanent lifestyle.

After the elimination phase you need to reintroduce High FODMAP foods

What is a FODMAP?

FODMAPs are short chain carbohydrates (sugars) that aren't absorbed properly in the gut, triggering uncomfortable symptoms in people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). FODMAPs are naturally found in many foods such as fruits, vegetables, grains, and processed foods.

FODMAP is an acronym for:

  • Fermentable

  • Oligo-

  • Di-

  • Mono-saccharides

  • And

  • Polyols

The low FODMAP diet involves restricting the number of FODMAP foods you eat, then reintroducing them one at a time into your diet to identify what your body can tolerate. Our guide involves three phases that aim to help you systematically add foods back into your diet over time.

Types of FODMAPs

Lactose: cheese, yogurt, milk

Fructose: honey, broccoli, fresh mango, agave

Galactans (GOS): chickpeas, lentils, silken tofu

Fructans: garlic, savoy cabbage, artichoke, roma tomato, ripe banana, blueberry, dried mango

Sorbitol: green cabbage, eggplant, blackberry

Mannitol: mushrooms, cauliflower, celery

Who should follow the Low FODMAP guide?

If you have been diagnosed with IBS you may be one of the 75% of individuals with IBS that find symptom relief. Don't convince yourself that you have to live with digestive discomfort, you can learn to manage your symptom and we are here to help.

Phase 1: Elimination

Restricting ALL FODMAP foods for 4 to 6 weeks, while keeping a food log and symptom journal to track your body's progress. Even after eliminating high FODMAP foods for a couple weeks, you may find you are still experiencing symptom flares. This could be due to contributing outside factors such as stress, lack of sleep and lack of sufficient exercise.

Phase 2: Challenge

Gradually reintroduce the restricted FODMAP foods one category at a time to determine the amount of a FODMAP that can be tolerated before causing digestive discomfort. Symptoms may appear as soon as 20 mins or up to 3 days after you have eaten, therefore it is important to continue restricting all other FODMAPs while in the challenge phase so you may determine the irritant.

The goal is to recognize our body’s response so we can create a sustainable long term diet plan. We do not want to continue restricting all FODMAPs long-term because they can be essential to our microbiome health. Our goal is to lower our consumption of problematic foods, not to completely eliminate FODMAPs as a whole.

Keep a food log with estimated amounts of food consumed and meal times. Include any symptoms you notice and take note of how you are feeling and how you are managing stress.

How to Start introducing FODMAP foods

This is an elimination process, during these 7 weeks all FODMAPs are to be eliminated except for the FODMAP you are testing. After the 3-4 day testing period there will be a 3-4 day rest period before starting the next FODMAP.

Start each challenge with a small serving. Then if you experience no symptoms proceed to a medium serving. If you still experience no symptoms proceed to a large serving by day 3. It is important to keep a food log in this phase and remember that symptoms may appear up to three days after consumption.

It is important to continue restricting all other FODMAPs while introducing a food in the challenge phase so you can successfully identify the irritant.

Example FODMAP Introduction Schedule

Fructan: Garlic

Day 1: ¼ clove (¼ tsp)

Day 2: ½ clove (½ tsp)

Day 3: 1 clove (1 tsp)

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

Fructose: Honey

Day 1: 1 tsp

Day 2: ½ TBSP

Day 3: 1 TBSP

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

Galactans: Chickpeas or Lentils

Day 1: ¼ cup

Day 2: ½ cup

Day 3: 1 cup

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

Sorbitol: Avocado

Day 1: ⅛ of a whole

Day 2: ¼ of a whole

Day 3: ½ of a whole

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

Lactose: Plain Greek Yogurt

Day 1: 2 TBSP

Day 2: ¼ cup

Day 3: ¾ cup

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

Mannitol: Cooked Mushrooms or Cauliflower

Day 1: ¼ cup

Day 2: ½ cup

Day 3: 1 cup

Rest for 3 to 4 days and observe

As hard as it may seem, try eliminating coffee as part of your challenge phase, then reintroducing the coffee. Coffee is not a FODMAP, but coffee is high in acidity which can irritate the gut lining. Coffee and caffeine can also trigger symptoms of anxiety, try switching to a cup of green tea or golden milk as an alternative.

We recommend keeping a food log / journal during this process

Things to log:

  • All food and beverages consumed

    • Note times where you overate (ex: I’m so stuffed, food coma)

    • Meal times

      • Try and stick to scheduled meal times your body may appreciate consistency

      • Avoid eating late at night or too close to bedtime. Our body’s digestion naturally slows as we enter a resting state. We want our body to be resting, not digesting all night while we sleep.

  • Symptoms: the more info we have the better chance we have in narrowing down triggers

    • Negative symptoms: indigestion, gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea

    • Times where you had no symptoms :)

    • Stress levels

  • Exercise or physical activity

Worried that you won't be able to enjoy food while on this diet? Think again!!

Check out some of my low FODMAP creations below

Phase 3: Re Challenge

After you have completed the initial challenge phase and as your symptoms subside, try introducing one of the trigger foods previously listed. As your gut heals and your microbiome diversifies you may find that you are able to tolerate a food that you once weren’t able to.

This phase can be repeated as many times as you want for as long as you wish. For example, you can choose to introduce different types of lactose into your diet over the course of a couple years and find out that you are sensitive to ice cream but not yogurt and hard cheeses are fine but soft cheese give you trouble.

You are trying to harmonize with your body, to understand distress signals, and to respond to warning signs. We have one body, let's nourish it and love it to our fullest capabilities.


How to keep food tasting good on the low FODMAP diet

  1. Supplementing garlic and onion

    1. Garlic infused olive oil

    2. Fresh ginger

    3. Fresh turmeric

    4. The green tops of green onion

  2. Spice up your life

    1. Cumin

    2. Coriander

    3. Fenugreek

    4. Curry powder (check for garlic or onion)

    5. Smoked maldon salt

  3. Fresh herbs, use them!

    1. Cilantro

    2. Basil

    3. Parsley

    4. Dill

    5. Oregano

General food guide tips

  • Avoid processed foods

  • Read EVERY label

  • Prepare food for yourself

    • Know exactly what is in your food

  • Incorporate tea and bone broth in your diet

  • Sweet tooth? Try some dark chocolate

Our Guide to a Healthy Gut

Feeling overwhelmed and need someone to guide you through the process?

Drop in our inbox or find us on Instagram. Chef Mikaela successfully used the low FODMAP diet to heal her own gut health and subside symptoms of IBS. Mikaela offers multiple service options to those living in the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area.

Online Resources

All of the research done on FODMAPs comes out of Monash University making the Monash University FODMAP diet app the top choice to get reliable information. The app does cost money, but it is 100% worth the cost to have a guide at your fingertips of tested foods, serving sizes, recipes and resources.

Below is a PDF of a list of low and high FODMAP foods, it is no where as detailed and accurate as the Monash App, but it is the free guide that I used and followed while on the low FODMAP diet on before I found out there was an app for that.

Download PDF • 71KB

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