After 12 years of struggling with IBS-D, I found information on Fructose Malabsorption last Oct that changed my life. I just want to share with anyone that may be suffering, like I was, with constant episodes of unexplained diarrhea, gas, and cramps.
In fructose malabsorption, the normal absorption of fructose is impaired. Fructose malabsorption is not to be confused with hereditary fructose intolerance, a potentially fatal condition in which the liver enzymes that break up fructose are deficient.
Fructose malabsorption can cause symptoms of bloating, gas, stomach pain, diarrhea and/or constipation, if the diet is not well planned. These are common symptoms that can often be called irritable bowel syndrome.
Researchers in Australia discovered that of having patients follow a low FODMAP diet can significantly reduce IBS symptoms. The term FODMAP is an acronym to describe a collection of short-chain carbohydrates found in many common foods. FODMAPs are composed of oligosaccharides (fructans, galactans), disaccharides (lactose), monosaccharides (fructose), and polyols (sugar alcohols). FODMAPs stands for Fermentable Oligo-, Di- and Mono-saccharides, and Polyols.
The FODMAP theory is that consuming foods high in FODMAPs results in increased volume of liquid and gas in the small and large intestine, causing IBS symptoms. It also appears that FODMAP’s have a cumulative effect on symptoms. In other words, eating foods with varying FODMAP values at the same time will add up, resulting in symptoms that you might not experience if you ate each food in isolation.
Glucose enhances the absorption of fructose. Therefore foods with a fructose-to-glucose ratio of less than 1 (like bananas) are better tolerated. Foods with fructose-to-glucose ratio of more than 1 (like apples and pears) can be a problem, regardless of actual amount of fructose in the food
Foods to avoid and/or limit:
Fruit and vegetables high in fructose (many fruits, some vegetables)
Any fructose-containing food in large amounts – including any fruit, fruit juice, dried fruit, tomato paste or sauce
Foods with a high fructose-to-glucose ratio.
HF Corn syrup: processed foods containing high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)
Crystalline fructose (sold as ‘fructose sugar’) and any product containing it
Sorbitol: processed foods containing sorbitol (420), Xylitol (967) and some other sugar-free sweeteners which are converted to fructose during digestion
Inulin: a thickener made from chicory, inulin contains fructose and is used some yogurts, milkshakes and other processed foods
Wheat: some people are also sensitive to foods rich in fructans (chains of fructose molecules) in foods such as wheat (this doesn’t affect all people with FM) - although people with fructose malabsorption don't have to avoid gluten, gluten free breads are often better tolerated by people with fructose malabsorption.
It sounds very complicated, but once you become familiar with the list of foods it’s pretty easy to adjust your diet and determine if this approach can help you. I saw a huge improvement in my symptoms within 48 hours. I keep a detailed food log, with symptoms, so I can go back and review the last couple days of food if I have a flare-up, and determine what caused it.
This link is to a simple list of FODMAP foods, those to avoid and those that are safe ibs.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=i
I know that's a lot of information, I just hope this information is helpful to someone. I know I was so frustrated with living on medications, knowing they were just masking symptoms instead of addressing the problem....I just couldn't figure out the problem.
Feel free to PM me if you want more information, I'm happy to share what I've learned on this.
| current weight: 147.5