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Low-FODMAP Diet for Inflammatory Bowel Disease

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If you have Crohn’s or Ulcerative Colitis (Inflammatory Bowel Disease – IBD), you know what it’s like to have to run to the bathroom on a moment’s notice. You know how scary it is to be in a situation where there is no bathroom in sight – the fear of not finding one in time.  The fear of most any social situation.  It’s not something that’s easy to talk to people about.  I have friends that battle with IBD and I can relate to their bathroom troubles.  Though I do not have IBD (I might have SIBO – still waiting on a diagnosis) I have come pretty close to not making it, a few times, in public no less.  My husband has been VERY supportive, patient and helpful.


IBD is a chronic condition with irregular intervals of active disease (flare-ups) or with little or no disease activity.  It involves chronic inflammation in all or part of the digestive tract. Symptoms can develop over time, and there are many theories about what causes IBD, but none have been proven thus far.

According to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America, 1.4 million Americans suffer from IBD including 140,000 children under the age of 18.


For those with inactive IBD, dietary options are limited, however, the Low-FODMAP diet may help one to better navigate a daily routine.  It is not a cure as unfortunately no cure exists yet.

As compared to most of the general population, fructose and lactose malabsorption are more common in those with IBD (source).  Also a small amount of people with IBD cannot tolerate gluten.  Researchers have suggested that there could be links between IBD and a diet high in fats and sugars. With that being said, reducing high FODMAPs may help those with an inactive IBD who also experience IBS symptoms.

A liquid diet, often referred to as ‘enteral nutrition’ may be prescribed to some people with IBD.  This treatment can last for less than a month to two months. It provides all necessary nutrients to patients and then a solid food diet can be re-introduced, like the Low-FODMAP diet.  There are other means suggested to help with symptoms like the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) and the use of herbal remedies.

If you know someone that has IBD, tell them about the Low-FODMAP diet for Inflammatory Bowel Disease and ask them to speak to their doctor about it! 

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