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Your Solution to a Healthier Gut?

Your Solution to a Healthier Gut?

The Low-FODMAP Diet: Your Solution to a Healthier Gut?

By Alex Orlov for Life by DailyBurn

An estimated 18 million Americans have non-celiac gluten sensitivity. But what if they’re wrong? A new and growing body of evidence suggests that the protein in gluten isn’t the only gastrointestinal villain that might be giving people a hard time. In fact, what many people assume is a gluten intolerance might actually be a reaction to an entirely different molecule, instead.

Let us introduce you to FODMAPs, which stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols. (See why it needs an acronym?) Each of these words are fancy scientific phrases for different types of food starches and sugars. In a nutshell, FODMAPs includes short-chain carbohydrates that some people have trouble digesting. Tons of foods you eat every day, like beans, ice cream, apples and asparagus, are high in FODMAPs and could be causing your gas and bloating. Here’s how to figure out if FODMAPs might be behind your digestive distress.

The Low-FODMAP Diet: What You Need to Know

For people with a sensitivity to FODMAPs, the gastrointestinal tract in their small intestines can’t absorb short-chain carbohydrates. This causes these unabsorbed molecules to move into the large intestine, where they start to cause problems. “The bacteria go to town on these sugars, and the result is fermentation,” says Nicole Silber, R.D., Director of Pediatric Nutrition at Middleberg Nutrition in New York City. This agitation leads to gas and bellyaches. Plus, bloating and cramping can occur because these molecules attract water to the gut, says Silber.

Related: How to Buy Gluten-Free Without Getting Duped

“Often it is a volume issue, most people can tolerate some degree of FODMAPs,” says Silber. Still, you might be surprised to learn that a lot of healthy items might be wreaking havoc on your stomach. Fruits like apples, avocados, peaches, pears and watermelon contain higher amounts of polyols and fructose, which are FODMAPs. And nutritious cauliflower, broccoli, brussels sprouts, eggplant and garlic have fructan, another digestive offender.


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