Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Low FODMAPs Diet and Biggest Loser Review

I know it might sound crazy, but Monday, November 16th, 2009 was my FIRST experience eating a pomegranate. I automatically assumed I wouldn't like it because it was "seedy", you know? But just look at it:

Not only are they delicious, but they are beautiful. I already knew that, but boy am I glad I discovered their goodness before they went out of season! Why didn't any of you tell me?! haha, I know, YOU DID!


Recently I was informed of a diet for IBS, called the low FODMAP diet, by a blogger named Kristen over at Simply Savor. This diet is low in many of the things I already new I needed to be avoiding, such as: fructose, oligosaccharides, lactose, and polyols. Click on this link to learn more about the diet, and more specific details about what to avoid if you have IBS. There was a helpful table that was part of the PDF supplied by this site, which listed all of the specific foods that are best to avoid. Reading this list made me cry, as many of the foods were some of my favorites. Some of them weren't too shocking:

Dried fruit (and dried fruit bars!)
Brussel sprouts
WHEAT (I've been avoiding gluten)
Artifiticial sweeteners

But some of them were very shocking, and actually quite depressing:

Apples (I think cooking will help!)
Artichoke (tear)
Honey (triple tear)

Practical Gastroenterology, August 2007

My plan is to stick to this FODMAPS diet, while continuing to monitor my sodium intake. Something else I am doing is cutting out the gas-causing foods from my diet (the foods that cause ME gas, that is). I've been doing a little experiment to find out which foods cause me the most gas, in an effort to save money (I spend about 20 dollars a month on Beano!!). From what I have learned this week, aside from the FODMAPS foods, I also need to limit these:

(two of my favorite veggies)

But before you feel bad for me, here are the veggies and fruits I CAN eat!

Blueberry (any berry really)
Spaghetti squash!


Greens (collard, kale, spinach)

Green beans, carrots, zucchini, tomatoes

This list is still in the works, by the way, as I am finding more and more fruits and veggies that I can eat as the days go by.

Question: Are you sick of my gassy posts yet?! Please, don't answer that :)


It's great that they are trying to get people to donate to Feeding America, however, it's pathetic that they have to use that as a way to get people to go to their website. Lame.

Who is going to spend their money on these zip lock bags that are made with "wind power"? I mean come on, stop making us poor people feel bad about buying the $.99 baggies that are made with electricity, instead of $5.00 to help save the planet. Let's be green and good at saving money.

Likes The "surprise" (I won't say it in case people haven't see in it) definitely made the speech easier! Great idea to do that, as giving a speech like that even scares ME! And I enjoy giving speeches more than most people, I think.

The speeches were a great way to motivate America. I gotta give it to the Biggest Loser! Heck, they even even motivated me to make a positive change. Although I felt bad for eating a rice cake and peanut butter while listening to Liz say she used to eat ice cream while watching the weigh ins :)

The person who got kicked off (I won't name names here) is such an inspiration! I couldn't even do what he/she was doing in the last 2 minutes of the show, SO IMPRESSIVE!

Next Post
Stay tuned for my next post, which will include some new food products and creations, plus some information about a better way to monitor your health status! Have a great day, and thanks for reading :)

***Stop by Coco's blog, Balance, Joy, and Delicias, to enter her PopChip giveaway! And, check out Naomi's Chocolate and Coffee giveaway! ***


  1. I also just recently tried a pomagranate. I tried one about 5 years ago and was turned off by the seeds and lack of 'meat.' But I ate one about 2 weeks, and Oh dear, I've been addicted ever since. I actually ate ALL of the arils out of one pom Monday night. SO good.

  2. it was a good episode :) mainly because i secretly wish tim gunn was my hubby in a totally weird and akward way. i actually just wish that he was at my how every morning to tell me "you look faabulous!"

    pomegranates seem like so much work! apples are so much easier haha..

    don't worry i eat enough apples for you

  3. I cried on the inside when I saw that list too :P
    Apples are painful for me. Ripe bananas & pineapple are ok. Watermelon makes me VERY bloated. For the artichoke & asparagus, I think thats only if you're a Fructmal because they contain fructals..
    There's lots of info going around at the mo about agave nectar actually being quite bad for us. It's being compared to HFCS, which is nasty stuff. Have you heard about this? So many bloggers use it! I know it upsets my gut big time!

  4. I love your gassy posts. It is something that needs to be talked about. No one is willing to talk about it in person! why not on a blog! It sure is the place to do it with all us foodies!

  5. I am not surprised at beans, brussel sprouts and cabbage being on that list! I'm glad you are trying to figure out what works for you- I don't have IBS but for some reason seem to have a bizarre reaction to eggplant when I eat it (I swell up like I am 9 months pregnant!) It's not painful or overly uncomfortable, but I try to avoid it. Love it so much though, lol.

  6. Hi Gina! Looking forward to hearing how the FODMAP works for you! i recommend the book "IBS: Free at Last" by Patsy Catsos who goes into more detail about it. she actually says you don't have to give up all of these foods (just for a 2 week period) and then slowly incorporate each group one at a time each week to see which ones have the worst effects. Hope all goes well!

  7. I'm so glad you can still have spaghetti squash and pumpkin...two of my favorite things!

    I hope this new plan works well for you, my dear!

  8. I hope this works out for you. I would shed a tear over artichokes too.

  9. I think Im the only person on the planet (or blog world) that has not tried pomegranate. Im glad to hear you enjoyed your first one!

    I like hearing about this diet.. I have suffered with bouts of IBS for years and years. I cannot imagine giving up beans and apples (omg, two major staples in my diet) :(

    PS.. I answered your ? on my blog but if you didnt see it... NO, I do not eat before 5.. lol. I was home really late last night so had the previous night's meal "scheduled" to go up at 5. We do eat early, though! When you have breakfast at 6, lunch at 12, dinner is typically "early"!

    Have a super day :)

  10. I actually cried during the "surprise" before the speech. I love when they do things like that! Plus I loved seeing the person who got kicked off in the end. They looked awesome!!!

    Good luck with the diet. I eat apples and eggplant all the time! I'd be sad.

  11. I have to come right out and say that I didn't read the last half of this post...haven't watched this week's episode yet! But I wanted to comment and say I like the new look of the blog!!

  12. Good luck with the new changes in your food consumption!

    Instead of using plastic bags, use reusable containers - that's better for the environment period! I was upset with Bob's comment too!

  13. HA I have am yet to try them too...they finally started to carry them in my supermarket and I still did not grab one. Is it crazy to be intimidated by a piece of fruit lol

    Dude did you see her Jay Leno after the show? she looks amazing!!!!!! she seriously motivated me.

  14. Thanks for the review. I didn't know about this diet, but it's from a good journal so that is a plus (mind you this was previously a typo that said pus). I hope it helps you out. I am hoping tomorrow and over the weekend to scan in some of the info I want to get to you and then I will email it over.

  15. My daughter LOVES pom seeds, just wish they weren't so fricken hard to peel! And Trader Joe's sells pom seeds already peeled, but we couldn't justify the $3.99 price tag!

    At least you have some stuff to eat! I love spaghetti squash!

  16. Gina, Thanks for posting about this diet. I haven't heard of it before. It comes from a credible journal, as you know, but should be interesting to see if it makes a difference. I hope it does. Stomach problems are always the most difficult to pinpoint and fix. Also--just want to say I really do love your blog and am so PROUD to see that you're a fellow RD! Keep up the awesome work. Be back soon:)

  17. Ah, that's a shame about some of the fruits and veggies you can't eat. BUT at least you can some of mother earth's other amazing eats, like blueberries (yum) and pomegranates! I just bought two pomegranates and can't wait to them up!

  18. NO! keep writing gassy posts! hahahah.... i love these because I get gassy often too! but I don't think I can give up all my favorite gassy forming veggies like cabbage, sprouts! :(
    keep me updated how it goes with this diet!
    And soooo glad you tried pomegranate. don't forget to make something yummy (like ice cream?) with it so you participate in the contest!

  19. oh bless you all the best with the diet hope it helps your symptoms

  20. I should attempt eating a pom again! I tried it once and got it all over the place!

    Interesting about that diet! The hardest thing for me on that list is artificial sweeteners! I don't use any in food or drinks but I chew gum all day. It makes my tummy bad but I am an addict haha.

  21. i cried during the surprise portion of the show after their makeovers!! omg what a show! i also LOVE LOVE LOVE rebecca she looks so amazing and on teh jay leno show WOW :) her arms were jacked!! she made me want to try to run a half marathon!!

    I hope this diet helps with your IBS


  22. I liked the BL last night with the make-overs and speeches. I am such a wuss, I'm always crying at that show! Did you know Rebecca and Daniel are dating? She mentioned it on Leno one night (where she looked PHENOM!!!!). Love that show!

  23. I'm really surprised by this IBS diet. I've never seen it before (I thought I was becoming an expert). It's so contradictory to many of the things I have seen. #1- blueberries kill me, #2- apples are fine as long as I peel them, #3- mushrooms are one of the only veggies I eat with no problems, and spinach kills me.
    However, I don't have it all figured out, I get very gassy...all the time really haha, clearly not sick of your gassy posts yet!

  24. I agree ... that half marathon was awesome!!! I told Erik, "Man, I think I need to at least run a 5k now!" haha.

  25. Great post, Gina as always!

    And, Love you BL recap. I was watching BL with my little cup of ice cream when she made the sitting on the couch with ice cream comment....busted!!

    Have a great weekend, Gina!!

  26. Do you have IBS??? Are you allowed to eat much fruit on your 'diet'? then now? I know I eat way too much in a day...but I can't seem to get over apples and bananas...although I know that apples are not sitting well with me lately...and yeah I am 'stinkingly gassy' (ahem...sorry :( ) alot...ugh. I suck.

  27. So funny that you mentioned the FODMAP diet; we just talked about it in class! I like your new layout; it looks really nice!

    I hope you have a great weekend, Gina. :-)

  28. I'm glad you liked the pomegranate.

    Good luck with continuing to try to figure out what will make you feel better!

  29. I read the first list of foods and I became sad for you...then I saw the second list. I'm glad you are focusing on what you CAN have!

  30. OMG. Gina, come over here! I wanna give you a hug! So sad...No apples? no eggplant and mushrooms? Sigh...I'm so sorry!

    But hey, the good news is that the earth is not limited to those few produces! And because of that, you got to try your first Pomegranate! I say, just think about the stuff you CAN it, and the options suddenly seem much brighter!

  31. I love poms- so good and so glad they are still in season. I get tummy aches all the time- still not sure what I have, or don't have, but a lot of those foods enter my mouth several times a day!

    Thanks for the informative post (as always)!

  32. I can't believe you hadn't tried out pomegranate yet! It's so awesome, and only here for such a short period of time. It's awesome on yogurt or cereal or oats. Yum!

    No coconut? Apples? Asparagus? Man, I'm glad I don't have IBS. Props to you though for working out a diet that keeps you from being too gassy ;)

  33. Thanks fro posting this. I will check out the link. Some of the "safe foods" you listed are not so safe for me, so I don't know if the diet would work fore me. But I'm willing to try anything to not have to think about this anymore.

  34. I love pomegranate but have yet to buy and peel my own :)

  35. Its great that you're figuring out what foods are causing stomach issues. I've never had an actual pomegranate either. The sticker price is a little daunting.

  36. Gina, I have heard very good things about pomegranate, don't know where to find it, but it sounds good.
    Also Pomegranate juice as well.
    Great ideas.

  37. Oh and I got the idea of a giveaway partly from your blog.

  38. Yay pomegranates!

    The good thing about finding out what foods don't work for your body is that you find all kinds of wonderful foods which DO suit your body. It's fun!

  39. wow.. this is interesting! im wondering if this might help some of my stomach issues.. i have oral allergy syndrome though (really bad!)- and can't eat most fruits uncooked.. i would hate to give up fresh apples, they are one of the ONLY fruits i can eat raw.. : (
    that list doesn't seem TOO awful though and you have lots of things that are YUMMY you can still eat.

    *im scared to eat a pom.* just gimmie the juice!

  40. I'm never too tired of your gassy posts!!! lol It's good info and very surprising for me too. Those brussels sprouts I made a little while ago, oh my gosh they were the worst for you know what! I can't tolerate pom juice, I don't know what it is but it goes right through me (I'll spare the details) But I haven't had the seeds in awhile. How's that for a gassy comment? haha

  41. Hooray for your first pom!!!

    The list of foods you can and can't eat is so interesting - I really admire your dedication to figuring out which foods are best for your body...

    YAY for your paper publication! You go girl!!

    P.S. We were watching Seinfeld reruns tonight - thought of you! :-)

  42. I love POM and I am so glad you liked it too :)

  43. lol- I had to delete your comment on my blog because my dad reads every word and I didn't want him to think about any "seriousness" at all between me and Eric haha, I actually didn't really GET what that question was asking! Eric and I took a little while to get that kind of serious because I had mono for the first month and a half of us knowing each other and I could barely leave my house so we had to talk on the phone/online, oh good times!

  44. Hi Gina,
    I just found your blog through Food-Fitness-Freshair's blog. Just a quick comment as I plan on going over to Kristen's blog to learn more about the FODMAP diet. I suffered with IBS.. actually in my Dr's words CHRONIC.. Took medication for 4 years straight and had colonoscopy after colonoscopy to figure out what the problem is... Finally begining of this year, January 27th to be exact, after bloating from head to toe (no kidding) and Dr's recommendation of removing 3/4 of my colon I decided to solve my problem by making changes in my diet. I follow proper food combining, meaning no protein w/ starch and no protein w/ fats... only starch and fats or veggies and protein or starch and veggies. I have also changed my daily routine. I eat from Light to Heavy, light as in light for my digestion system. Here is the order: Fresh Juice -> Fruits -> veggies -> nuts & dried fruits -> cooked meals.

    I have been IBS free for the past 9 month and have been surgery free yay!

    sorry for the long comment

  45. Hi Gina, I just found your blog because I have Google alerts set to pick up my name or the title of my book (IBS--Free at Last!). Just thought I would stop by and say an encouraging word! As Kristin mentioned, the FODMAPS elimination diet is more of a learning process than a "forever" thing. First you eliminate all the FODMAPS from your diet for a week or two. If this approach is going to work for you it will be obviously within days--it works like a miracle for some people, but not everyone. Then, you can use the tools in my book or whatever you can find on the internet to add back one type of FODMAPS carb at a time--the "challenge" phase. Once you figure out which types of FODMAPS carbs are the biggest triggers for you, you can adjust your diet to keep your symptoms at a tolerable level. You hardly ever have to give up foods entirely! You could be enjoying those yummy fruits and honey again as soon as you figure things out.

  46. I have never herard of FODMAPS but i'm glad i'm educated now. I've struggled with stomach problems for the LONGEST time now. I just started gluten free Monday and actually bought the Millet cereal on your post today. I still had BAD gas so I thought maybe it was from that since it didn't say gluten free? Now looking at your list I eat asparagus all the time! Hmmm...I think i'll switch to all green beans and see if that helps! Thanks!

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  49. Thanks so much for posting that list. I'm gonna give it a go. Not for weight loss but I'm just so sick of IBS :( It's just great that there might be hope that this can be controlled instead of it controlling me! :D
    Here's hoping it works!

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  52. Candid RD: What is the real difference between the Low-FODMAP Diet and the Specific Carbohydrate Diet? Both are used to treat the same conditions, such as IBS and Crohn's, but they have some different carbohydrate restrictions. How do I choose between the diets? Thanks for your help.

    1. I don't know much about the specific carbohydrate diet (yes, I'm JUST NOT seeing this comment from two years ago.....) but there isn't much research to support it. IT eliminates ALL starches and grains and simple sugars (no fun) unlike the low fodmaps which only eliminates certain ones.

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