Eliminating or restricting FODMAPs from the diet may greatly improve symptoms of IBS and other functional GI disease, especially in those patients who see a link between food, eating, and their IBS symptoms. The low FODMAP diet can be used alone, or side-by-side with medications for the treatment of IBS. Bloating and abdominal pain are the most likely symptoms to improve but you may see improvements in fatigue, bowel movements, and general quality of life as well.
While the low FODMAP diet has been studied mostly in IBS, it is often used for other GI conditions as well. Many GI conditions overlap with IBS, so sometimes the low FODMAP diet can be added to treatment for inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth if symptoms persist.
Working with your GI provider and a dietitian familiar with GI conditions can improve the chances of getting better with this type of elimination diet strategy, but the low FODMAP diet doesn’t help everyone. Patients with a history of eating disorders, at risk for malnutrition, or who have complex medical histories may not be good candidates for this dietary strategy.