If you have IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) you may have come across the FODMAP diet as a way of managing your symptoms through diet. You may have asked yourself, is this a diet that might help you?

What is the FODMAP diet?

The FODMAP diet was developed by a team of researchers at Monash University in Australia. A FODMAP diet is a 3 step diet used to help manage the symptoms of medically diagnosed IBS.

A FODMAP diet should be followed under the guidance of a dietitian who has specialist skills in managing IBS and using a FODMAP diet.

How does a FODMAP diet help with IBS symptoms?

FODMAPs are a form of dietary carbohydrates, which are poorly absorbed in the small intestine and fermented in the large intestine triggering symptoms in sensitive individuals.

These carbohydrates are called Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides, And, Polyols, also known as FODMAPS.

The following table shows example of some of the carbohydrate foods that can be problematic:

Oligosaccharides e.g. wheat, pulses and some fruit and vegetables

Disaccharides e.g. lactose found in milk and yoghurts

Monosaccharides e.g. honey and various fruit and vegetables

Polyols e.g. chewing gum

Dietary intervention involves the strict elimination of FODMAP foods for an 8 week period.

Following the 8 week period of elimination, FODMAP containing foods are reintroduced into your diet to identify which particular foods you are sensitive to.

Will a FODMAP diet help resolve my symptoms?

The Low FODMAP diet is extremely effective in improving the symptoms in approximately 70% of patients with IBS.

It is essential you follow a low FODMAP diet under the guidance of a FODMAP trained dietitian as it is a complex diet to follow. The support and guidance from a FODMAP trained dietitian will ensure the diet is effective and nutritionally adequate.

Can you help me with my IBS symptoms?

Please use this form to contact me to discuss how I could help you manage your IBS symptoms with diet.

IBS: Irritable Bowel Syndrome – how can diet help to manage my symptoms?

Did you know that up to 10% of UK population can be affected by IBS? What is IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a condition that affects the digestive system and presents with symptoms of stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation. It is important that diagnosis of IBS is made by your GP to ensure other conditions are ruled out.

What causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

It has no specific cause, no distinctive pathology and no single effective treatment.  The symptoms can vary from person to person and in the same person and often in response to what happens or changes in diet or life style ( )

Can diet help manage my symptoms of IBS?

Dietary changes can often help manage IBS symptoms and there are some simply changes that you can try. It is recommended that you try these first line steps initially rather than making any unnecessary drastic changes to your diet.

Other helpful tips that can help manage your symptoms alongside diet are:

  • Take regular exercise such as walking or swimming
  • Take time to relax
  • Don’t rush your meals and ensure you chew your food thoroughly

If your symptoms persist following making general lifestyle and dietary changes, you may benefit from dietary intervention. Please contact me to discuss whether I can help you with further dietary changes.

Pumpkin season

During the month of October we are all busy prepping for the Halloween celebrations from planning any parties we are attending and what costume we might wear and what decorations to put up in our homes. Pumpkins have been a firm favourite in our homes and our interior style, where more than one pumpkin usually adorns the windowsill or doorstop.

With this in mind we need to think about how to make the most of the all this delicious pumpkin we have. I thought I would share my favourite ways to make use of pumpkins once Halloween comes to an end…

Pumpkin soup

Try this simple recipe here

Try replacing the croutons with roasted pumpkin seeds. Follow the instructions below on how to do this.

Pumpkin risotto

Simply roast your peeled pumpkin cubes and add to your cooked risotto.

To roast your pumpkin cut into 1.5cm cubes and place it on a baking tray, drizzle over some oil, then roast for 30 mins.

Pumpkin loaf

A nice seasonal alternative to banana bread. Try this pumpkin and ginger tea loaf here

Pumpkin seed salad

Add your pumpkin seeds to a lightly greased baking tray with olive oil. Bake until the seeds are toasted and crunchy, about 12 to 15 minutes. Add to a salad of your choice for extra crunch

Nutritional facts

Pumpkins have a great nutritional value providing fibre, Vitamin C and Vitamin E as well as the mineral potassium. An 80g portion of pumpkin also counts towards one of your 5 A Day.

Don’t forget that the seeds of a pumpkin are also a valuable source of nutrients. These little seeds are a great source of protein and unsaturated fats, including omega-3 and omega-6. They also contain a good range of nutrients including iron, zinc, selenium, calcium, B vitamins and beta-carotene.

What are your favourite pumpkin recipes?

The sunshine vitamin…Vitamin D

As the summer months have come to an end and we enter the autumn months, our minds might turn to the change in daylight hours but have you considered what these changes might also mean in terms of our levels of Vitamin D?

What is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is an important vitamin for the health of our bones and teeth. Vitamin D also helps regulate the amount of calcium and phopshate in our body.

What happens if we do not get enough Vitamin D?

If our bodies don’t get enough Vitamin D we are at risk of developing Osteomalacia. This condition results in weakening of our bones causing bone pain and muscle weakness.

What foods contain Vitamin D?

There are a few foods that contain a small amount of Vitamin D, such as:

  • egg yolks
  • oily fish
  • liver
  • fortified foods (most fat spreads, yogurts and some breakfast cereals)

However, our body creates vitamin D from direct sunlight on the skin when outdoors, therefore, during the summer months we should be able to get all our vitamin D from the sunshine and a balanced diet.

Do we need a Vitamin D supplement?

The NHS advice is that it is difficult for people to get enough vitamin D from food alone during the autumn and winter months, therefore everyone (including pregnant and breastfeeding women) should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D.

Welcome to our new website!

My passion for diet and nutrition is driven by anything food related, whether that is trying out new recipes and restaurants or visiting supermarkets/food markets in other countries to learn more about different food cultures.

As I start out on my freelance career in diet and nutrition consultancy I will share my adventure with regular blog posts and updates on relevant topics in the field of diet and nutrition.

Watch this space for further information about a collaboration with a chef and speech and language therapist on the new IDDSI framework