To answer this question, most people would need to do a standard low FODMAP diet for around 4-6 weeks. If there are any symptoms improvement, followed by a re-challenge phase. This phase typically takes around 8-10 weeks, depending on the number of carbohydrate group you are testing. From there, you would be able to work out what type of carbohydrate group you are able to tolerate. From there, you will be able to work out what food can you can eat for the long term.
It is important to remember though - the symptoms of IBS can be quite a bit similar to a number of more serious conditions, such as coeliac disease, inflammatory bowel disease, certain forms of cancer and endometriosis. Therefore it is important that you seek medical opinion first to exclude other causes and to have a medically confirmed irritable bowel syndrome before making any changes to your diet.
Most people with IBS should be able to tolerate (not a complete list):
- Starches: Most wheat free bread, Rice or rice noodles, potato
- Protein foods: Tofu, small amount of lentils or chickpeas, and if you eat meat, all kind of meat
- Plant-based milk or if you use cow's milk, lactose free milk
- Fruit: Berries such as strawberry, blueberries
- Vegetables: Carrot, cucumber, salad leaf.
A dietitian who is trained with low FODMAP diet would be able to help you to work out the best way to go about this and ensure nutritional adequacy.
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