Get ready to hear the word FODMAP a lot. It’s a serious and frustrating diet issue for a lot of us. For many, it can mean “a real pain in the gas.”
You see, FODMAP foods contain hard to breakdown fibers that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine. FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-Di-Monosaccharides and Polyols. That’s a mouthful. Just like FODMAPS themselves.
In plain English that even Bally the Dog can understand: FODMAP foods cause bloating, gas, constipation, and pain. Cutting out FODMAP foods could ease suffering and help you take an inch or two off your bloated belly.
Problem FODMAPS ingredients include wheat, lactose (dairy), fructose, and sugar alcohols such as sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol and maltitol – so check your food labels!
But even healthy fruits and veggies can be big problems.
The worst veggies:
- cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cauliflower)
And on the fruit side:
The top 5 are ALL of my favorites, of course. Ha!
The good news is that many superfoods, like spinach and blueberries, are fine.
Another fruit that’s easy on the belly is bananas, Bally the Dog’s favorite. Each morning Grandma Ballantyne shares a banana with him. It’s a cute and comical sight. She slices off a piece and tosses it to him…but he often closes his mouth too soon, so it hits him in the nose and rolls under the fridge. Oh Bally, you’re one silly dog!
But back to your belly…
How can you know if FODMAPS are the reason for your bloating or gas?
The best way to find out is by turning your body into the world’s best science experiment. Put on your whitecoat, get out your clipboard, and observe. Use these steps and you’ll be even smarter than Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory.
Step #1 – Wake up, and eat nothing other than a serving of potentially bloating fruit. For example, eat a large apple.
Step #2 – Wait an hour. How do you feel? Note this on your clipboard, and then return your pen into the pocket protector of your lab coat.
Step #3 – Eat the rest of a dairy-free, grain-free breakfast, like eggs and bacon. Wait an hour. How do you feel?
Step #4 – Wait another hour and note how you feel.
Step #5 – Repeat each morning testing a new fruit from your regular diet, checking your body’s response to problematic pears, peaches, cherries, and watermelon.
For veggies, repeat the same experimental steps before dinner. For example, eat a small bowl of broccoli 30-60 minutes before a dairy-free, grain-free meal of meat and a baked potato. Note how you feel and how your gut reacts. Tomorrow night, try the same experiment with cauliflower, then brussels sprouts the next night, asparagus after that, and so on.
And finally, if you want to see if dairy is a problem, just wake up, have a protein shake, glass of milk, or bowl of plain yogurt, and then note how you and your gut respond. But make sure to eat plain dairy foods without FODMAP fruits or veggies, of course…then again, who puts broccoli in their yogurt…besides Bally the Dog?
If your belly bloats over the next 2 hours, you’ll want to avoid dairy, and you should experiment with a 21-day diet free of all dairy products.
If your belly doesn’t bloat, good news, your digestive system seems to tolerate it!
So there you go…that’s the truth about the fruits and veggies that you might need to avoid in order to get a flat belly…and to say goodbye to bloating for good.
Nutrition can be a complicated topic, I know. It frustrates me as much as it does you.
Being bloated is one of the most annoying feelings to have all day long. It’s worth “nerding it up” for a few days and trying these simple little experiments to see if FODMAP foods are ruining your weight loss efforts.
But wait…there’s one more food to avoid if you’re struggling with bloating and belly fat.
Let me know how your experiments go, Doctor!
Wishing you a belly-busting breakthrough.
Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer
PS – You must do!
There is no try, young Skywalker. Either do or do not do!
All the planning in the world is no good if you don’t follow through. Be a robotic action-taker. You only get results from DONE.
Stay strong and push on. Make this an amazing week.