“Some people continue to suffer uncomfortable digestive problems despite omitting the foods they may be intolerant to. If there are no definite test results pointing at an allergy or intolerance, then you’ll most likely be diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Scientists Peter Gibson and Susan Shepherd at Moash University in Australia researched the reasons behind the vicious cycle of bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and discomfort. They came upon some evidence proving that certain sugars could actually be the cause of many of these ailments: ‘Fermentable Oligo-Di-Monosaccharides and Polyols,’ thus founding the term FODMAP.

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Fermentable: these types of sugar have the ability and tendency to ferment in our intestines, resulting in bloating and diarrhea.

Oligosaccharides: fructans (FOS), wheat, rye, onions, garlic, galactans (GOS) (legumes), chickpeas.

Disaccharide: sucrose, maltose, lactose.

Monosaccharide: fructose, glucose, and galactose.

Polyol: sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, maltitol (sugar substitutes).

It is not possible to completely avoid each and everyone one of these types of sugar, since they are found naturally in the food we eat. It would be wise to avoid eating foods containing large amounts of these sugars for a certain amount of time, simply to see if they could be the reasons behind the problems you may be experiencing.

Research has proven that there is a certain daily limit of FODMAPs that can be tolerated. If you’ve eaten your daily limit in lactose already, then it’s no wonder that when you eat the same berries that you ate the day before with no negative effects, all of a sudden they cause you discomfort. Try picturing your FODMAP limit, applying it throughout the day, distributed evenly in each meal. If you go over your limit, then you are bound to have negative reactions.

The pure food Paleo diet eliminates the consumption of fructose and galctan by eliminating grains. Legumes are also avoided with the occasional exception. You are able to test fruits after a grace period, using the guide to see which fruits are better tolerated than others. It all depends on moderation.”

—From Fruit Belly: A 4-Day Quick Fix To Relieve Bloating Caused by High Carb, High Fruit Diets by Romy Dollé

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