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A Comprehensive Guide to the FODMAP Diet

Have you ever experienced painful abdominal cramps, bloating, and bowel irregularities after eating certain foods? If so, there is a chance that you might be suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), but check with your doctor just to be sure.

IBS is a common gastrointestinal disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. One of the ways to manage IBS symptoms is by adopting a FODMAP diet. If you have never heard of the FODMAP diet, don't worry, we will explain everything you need to know about it in this comprehensive FODMAP guide.

What is FODMAP?

FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides, and Polyols, which are carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed by the digestive system.

When food high in FODMAPs gets into the large intestine, they are fermented by gut bacteria, producing gas, and other by-products, thus leading to IBS symptoms for those that are intolerant. The primary goal of the FODMAP diet is to eliminate high-FODMAP foods from your diet, allowing your digestive system to heal and alleviate the intensity of IBS symptoms.

You may be able to reintroduce those foods later to see if there have been any changes in your body’s response. For some people, reducing how frequently or how much they eat high-FODMAP foods helps to alleviate symptoms and it can even increase their tolerance over time. If you try this and it works for you, remember not to get complacent. Increasing the quantity and frequency too suddenly can cause the symptoms to return. Sometimes, less is more.

We understand that living on a restrictive diet can be unsatisfying and challenging. In fact, the stress can exacerbate IBS symptoms which kind of defeats the purpose. While a FODMAP diet is effective, we know it’s not for everyone. For those who would rather eat more freely, try JUVIA (which has been certified as low FODMAP) and see the difference.

What does the science say?

The FODMAP diet has been shown to be an effective way of managing IBS symptoms in scientific studies. In one study, 86% of participants with IBS who followed the FODMAP diet reported a significant reduction in abdominal pain and bloating. These encouraging results have led to the increasing popularity of the FODMAP diet among healthcare professionals and patients suffering from IBS.

The FODMAP diet was first developed by a team of researchers at Monash University in Australia led by Professor Peter Gibson. The team discovered that certain carbohydrates in food were the main contributors to IBS symptoms, and restricting the intake of these carbohydrates could significantly help alleviate these symptoms. Since then, the FODMAP diet has undergone various refinements with the goal of making it easier for patients to follow.

Following a FODMAP diet

If you're considering adopting a FODMAP diet, it's essential to work with a registered dietitian who will guide you through the process and ensure that your nutritional needs are met.

Following a FODMAP diet can be challenging, but there are plenty of resources available to help. Monash University has an official FODMAP diet app that can help you identify high and low FODMAP foods. Additionally, there are several free online resources, such as the FODMAP Friendly Smartphone App, that can guide you through your FODMAP journey.

It is well-established that not everyone reacts the same way to the same foods, so it is important to figure out which foods are causing you tummy trouble. A good way to go about this is through the process of elimination. It takes some time and effort, but it is definitely worth it if you have frequent outbursts of IBS symptoms. Some people find the process quite exciting because it feels like an experiment.

To do this properly you will need to keep a record of what you are eating and the reactions those foods cause. The best way to achieve this is by keeping a food journal. Check out our guide on following a 30-day elimination diet. It will help you on your way to understanding your body better.

What to eat

When following a FODMAP diet, it is highly recommended that you avoid foods such as wheat, onions, garlic, milk, and beans because they are high in carbohydrates that cause internal fermentation and this often triggers flare-ups in people who suffer from IBS.

A long list of ingredients in accordance with their FODMAP score can be found here, but remember, sometimes the way you prepare your food can impact its FODMAP score. For example, chickpeas have lower scores once you soak them for a few hours and remove their outer shells. The same is true of some bean types. This means you may have more options if you take the time to invest in preparing your ingredients, which can be exciting and deepen your relationship with your food and body.

Following a FODMAP diet does not mean you cannot enjoy a diverse range of delicious and nutritious foods - there are lots of alternatives. Some FODMAP-friendly foods include oats, quinoa, rice, spinach, potatoes, and chicken. With a little creativity, you can substitute high-FODMAP foods with FODMAP-friendly alternatives to ensure you're still getting a well-balanced diet. JUVIA’s website regularly shares gut-friendly recipes that are both nutritious and delicious.

Having said that, we know that restriction doesn’t feel nice. FOMO kicks in and suddenly all of those ingredients on the ‘banned list’ become the apple of your eye, especially if you are following our 30-day elimination diet.

For those of you who would rather skip the restrictions and continue enjoying your favourite foods without the consequences of an upset tummy, there is another way, but be warned - it tastes delicious and you might get hooked.

A little bottle of magic

JUVIA is a health supplement formulated by leading gastroenterologist, Professor John Hunter. It is 100% plant-based and derived from enzyme-rich barley. It works by breaking down those troublesome carbohydrates before they reach your gut and ferment, meaning you can enjoy your favourite foods without the uncomfortable consequences that normally follow.

JUVIA is backed by science and we are currently engaged in a study with the NHS. Check out our reviews from happy customers who are now enjoying life and food thanks to JUVIA.

Final Thoughts

The FODMAP diet is effective at managing IBS symptoms and it has been widely researched by scientific studies. The FODMAP diet involves eliminating foods high in FODMAPs and then gradually reintroducing them to determine which FODMAPs your body tolerates.

Although it can be challenging to follow, there are plenty of resources available to guide you through the process. By working with a registered dietitian and following the FODMAP diet, you can significantly improve your quality of life by reducing the uncomfortable symptoms you experience. Remember to enjoy a balanced and diverse diet, and don't hesitate to reach out for support when necessary.

Alternatively, you can try JUVIA. JUVIA is approved as a low-FODMAP food product by Monash University. It has helped thousands of people around the world and the best part is that you won’t have to give up any of your favourite foods. It tastes delicious and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Many people use JUVIA as an alternative to sugar and honey in their cooking.

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