The word FODMAP is an acronym for a group of short chain carbohydrates (certain sugars and fibers) which may be poorly absorbed or not absorbed at all in the small intestine. FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols.
There are three phases of the Low FODMAP diet:
1.) The Elimination Phase
During the Elimination Phase, all high FODMAP foods are removed for a period of 2-6 weeks. The goal is to understand if removing FODMAPs from your diet actually improves your symptoms. If it does, you will go onto the second phase, the Reintroduction Phase. If not, it’s likely that FODMAPs were not causing your symptoms in the first place (or that you accidentally consumed FODMAPs during the Elimination phase).
2.) The Reintroduction Phase
The goal of the Reintroduction Phase is to determine which FODMAPs are triggers for you personally and in what quantities. In this phase, you will try consuming foods that contain one of the six common FODMAPs groups, one at a time.
3.) The Modified Phase
In this phase, you will modify the Low FODMAP diet based on what you learned in the Reintroduction Phase. You will add back the FODMAP foods you passed in the challenges and continue to restrict the ones that triggered your symptoms. The goal of this phase is to find the most varied, nutritious diet possible while minimizing your IBS symptoms. The more foods you are able to eat, the easier it will be to adhere to the diet long-term.
Read more about FODMAPs and the Low FODMAP diet on the Fig blog.