Do you have the common food intolerances?

Swelling and discomfort after eating can not only be the result of a big meal might be caused by the emergence of a new intolerance.

You wake up in the morning with a flat stomach, and then by the end of the day you find yourself with such a swollen belly to look like eight months pregnant? These symptoms could very well be the consequence of an undiagnosed food intolerance. A new Australian research shows there could be more people than you think who suffer from allergies to common foods such as fruits, vegetables, artificial sweeteners and dairy products – resulting in swelling, cramps and other symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

What is the cause?

Many common foods we eat contain a variety of small carbohydrate molecules. These molecules do not cause problems for most people, but some of us do not digest them well – this is due to swelling. Collectively, these molecules are known as FODMAPs – oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols fermentable.

Common examples FODMAPs

Fructose: a single sugar found naturally in fruits, honey and some vegetables. It is thought that 30-40 percent of sufferers of IBS, and even 30-40 percent of the general population suffer from fructose malabsorption (although the symptoms can vary greatly because the discomfort they cause).
Fructans: a molecule chain of many of fructose sugar units joined together, naturally in wheat, onions and many other foods. As in the fructan are combined fructose molecules, people who suffer from fructose malabsorption should also avoid these foods.
Polyols: often used as an artificial sweetener (usually with the caveat ‘excessive consumption may produce laxative effects’) that can be veTESTS PRIOR in some fruits and vegetables.
Lactose: a double dose of sugar that is contained in the milk of cows, sheep and goats.
Galactans: a molecule chain of many single sugar units together, which are commonly found in legumes, beans, chickpeas and lentils.

Because these foods cause bloating?

When FODMAP molecules are absorbed in our small intestine continue to ferment through the digestive tract. This releases gas, which can cause bloating, cramps and other symptoms.

How are FODMAPs and IBS linked?

IBS is a condition in which the nerve endings in the digestive system are hypersensitive to stimuli, such as the excess gas production. The FODMAPs can cause excess gas production, leading to symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain and changes in bowel habits such as diarrhea, constipation or a combination of both. It is believed that IBS may affect approximately 15 percent of people and two to three times more women than men.

IBS is not always caused by FODMAPs – you may suffer from IBS due to other factors, such as stress. The food, however, is often the cause of symptoms, and a low FODMAP diet exists to relieve IBS symptoms in 75 percent of IBS sufferers.

How do I know if the FODMAPs are a problem for me?

Not everyone has a problem with every FODMAP. For example, you may be lactose intolerant, but have no problem with fructose. If you are suffering from swelling or other symptoms of discomfort, a hydrogen test could help – this can identify both fructose and lactose malabsorption. The test results, however, can sometimes be difficult to interpret.

Beat the bloat

Research has shown that a diet low FODMAP can be a way moltor effective to prevent swelling, but there is no need to restrict all FODMAP food – just the ones that give you the symptoms. In other words, if you were diagnosed with fructose intolerance, there is no need to avoid lactose.

Many people with allergies have FODMAP of those symptoms ‘dose-dependent’, ie mmanifestano intolerance only consuming food in large quantities. Rye and garlic, for example, contain fructans but many people find that they do not cause severe symptoms when consumed in small amounts. Similarly, people with fructose intolerance do not have to cut out all the fructose from their diet – they simply need to avoid foods that contain excess fructose (more fructose than glucose in the food).

If you are planning to follow a nutritional plan FODMAP low, it is worth to mention a dietitian specializing in low FODMAP diets – they will be able to help create an adequate nutritional intake.

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