I’ve just about hit the 1 week mark of the exclusion phase of the FODMAP diet. So far, I’m still experiencing some symptoms, mostly nausea, but since I have been on the diet, I have not had the severe stomach pains or bloating that I used to have just about every day. After doing some pondering, I think my biggest problem food may be gluten. I used to feel the worst after eating lunch and I thought it was just from the stress of eating in work. However, just about every meal I eat at lunch has some or multiple forms of gluten. Most days I had dry rye bread with either scrambled egg whites or chicken noodle soup. Some days I had frozen pot stickers or egg rolls, which both contain wheat. I remember one day my stomach started gurgling when I ate plain egg noodles and chicken broth. The only thing I’m confused about if gluten is the main problem is why I was able to eat bagels at night time without any immediate side effects. During the time period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, my nerves were acting up so I switched from my homemade oat waffles to plain bagels thinking the plainer the better. However, during that time period, I was in the bathroom like clockwork every morning when I woke up, so maybe because I was under less stress at home the side effects took longer to show themselves. It’s very hard to be sure exactly what is causing the IBS symptoms since stress plays such a huge role in it as well. I’m happy that some of my symptoms seem to have diminished and I’m hopeful that by the end of next week I will be feeling even better.
I’m usually pretty good about committing to a plan and motivating myself, but I did crack one night and had a half a piece of gum, oops. It was delicious though and I savored it to the last chew. I’m hoping that glycols are not one of my FODMAPS so that I can go back to chewing sugar free gum again. I did learn from this very helpful blog – http://fodmaplife.com/ – that there is a FODMAP friendly brand called Simply Gum that I may try. The details on the brand will be posted tomorrow; I can’t wait to learn more about it. Although it’s a bit difficult to adjust to this new diet, I know it is only temporary. Eventually, I will be at the reintroduction phase and will experiment with incorporating high FODMAP foods into my diet. This will help me determine which foods are triggers for me, although I am almost certain that gluten is a trigger and know for sure that lactose is a trigger. I am praying that chocolate is not one of my trigger foods because the measly 1 tbsp of cocoa powder per serving and 1oz of dark chocolate bar per serving is much lower than what I would typically have in my favorite chocolate cake recipe. I’m planning to create an adjusted recipe for my chocolate cake and do some experimenting until I get a good FODMAP chocolate cake, because that is something I don’t think I can live without.
I also invested in “The Complete Low-FODMAP Diet: A Revolutionary Plan for Managing IBS and Other Digestive Disorders” by Sue Shepherd PhD and Peter Gibson MD. Sue Shepherd is the founder of the FODMAP diet. There is also a great blog – http://fodmapmonash.blogspot.com/ – associated with Monash University, where Sue Shepherd completes her research. I just learned about this new diet, but there are so many resources available for people like me who are new to the diet. I’m having fun learning the science behind this diet and I am confident that it is something that I will continue to follow since it already seems to have helped me.