When Healthy Foods Make You Sick

Perhaps you have heard of the new FODMAPs diet? FODMAP=Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides and Polyols. FODMAPs are carbohydrates (sugars) that are found in some foods.

FODMAPs are foods that are generally considered healthy and include the following: fructose (fruits, honey, high fructose corn syrup, etc.); lactose (dairy); fructans (wheat, garlic, onion, inulin, etc.); galactans (legumes such as beans, lentils, soybeans, etc.); polyols (sweeteners containing isomalt, mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol, and stone fruits such as avocados, apricots, cherries, nectarines, peaches, plums, etc.).

These foods pull water into the digestive tract and may not be well digested or absorbed. They can even be fermented by bacteria in the digestive system when consumed in large amounts. If you experience diarrhea, gas, bloating, cramping or constipation, it could be that you are sensitive to FODMAPs.

The FODMAP diet limits these foods that may cause digestive distress and also avoids some foods that are high in fiber. Steering clear of these foods may help your symptoms, and taking a high-quality digestive enzyme such as UpZymes can also be beneficial.

—Dr. Joshua Levitt