Digestive Health

What Are the Best Foods for People Living With IBS?

Guest post by NewLifeOutlook

There are plenty of different foods you can still enjoy with IBS, and there are others foods that should be avoided at all cost.

You’ve likely heard that you should avoid high FODMAP foods if you have IBS. FODMAPs are short chain carbohydrates found in foods.

People with IBS don’t absorb or digest this type of carbohydrate very well. The carbs ferment in the gut and cause bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and cramping. By following and eating low FODMAP foods, you will likely experience an improvement in your symptoms and overall health.

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The low FODMAP diet is recommended for a 6-8 week period. After following this plan, you may slowly reintroduce some foods and see how you react to them. Basically, if you don’t experience symptoms, you can continue to eat those foods.

If you want to achieve the best results, you should consult a dietician before following a low FODMAP diet.

Take a look at the 7 best foods for IBS, below.

1. Eggs, Meats and Fish

Eggs, fish, turkey, chicken, lamb and shellfish are all good choices. Although beef and pork are low in FODMAPs they are high in fat and should be consumed in moderation.

A note about meat, avoid buying semi-prepared meats. Semi-prepared meat typically contains high fructose corn syrup and other sugars which should be avoided if you have IBS.

2. Low FODMAP Dairy Alternatives

Most dairy products are high in lactase, which can aggravate the digestive symptoms.

However, you can substitute dairy products with low FODMAPs options like lactose-free cheese and milk, hard cheeses such as cheddar, mozzarella, swiss or feta. There are other milk alternatives such as almond, coconut, rice milk, as well as tempeh and tofu.

Remember to stay away from buttermilk, chocolate, creamy sauces, ice cream, milk, cottage and ricotta cheese as well as sour cream if you wish to not irritate your IBS symptoms.

3. Go Gluten-Free

Although wheat is considered to be a high FODMAP food, it is safe to eat grains with gluten-free or spelt grains like corn, oats, potato, quinoa, rice or tapioca.

Health food stores or grocery stores carry gluten-free products like bagels, biscuits, cereals, breads, noodles, tortillas, and crackers.

It’s recommended to avoid foods which include wheat, barley, and rye because they contain gluten and they can irritate the digestive tract in some people with IBS.

4. Certain Low FODMAP Fruits

Fruits contain high amounts of carbohydrates, and some of those carbs are high FODMAPs.

This doesn’t mean you have to cut out fruit entirely. Good fruit choices are:

● Bananas

● Blueberries

● Cantaloupe

● Cranberries

● Grapes

● Kiwi

● Lemon and lime

● Mandarins

● Orange

● Pineapple

● Rhubarb

● Strawberries

● Tangerines

5. Low FODMAP Vegetables

When it comes to vegetables, there are even more options because almost all vegetables are typically safe.

Low FODMAP vegetables include:

● Alfalfa

● Bok choy

● Carrots

● Cucumbers

● Eggplants

● Kale

● Lettuce

● Pumpkin

● Radishes

● Potatoes

● Squash

● Seaweed

● Spinach

● Tomatoes

● Zucchini

● Water chestnuts

6. Unsweetened Drinks

On the other hand, most sodas and fruit juices contain high fructose corn syrup and should be completely eliminated from the diet. So, if you’re feeling thirsty, why not make something at home or grab a bottle of water instead?

You can make smoothies from fruits and/or vegetables that are low in FODMAPs, and limit your consumption to just half a cup at a time.

Water with a slice or lemon or cucumber is also a great choice and can be consumed freely, and coffee and tea should be consumed in moderation.

7. Use Spices and Herbs to Enhance the Flavor

Food will always taste better if you add some spices and condiments.

IBS-friendly seasonings include:

● Salsa

● Cooking oils

● Maple syrup without high fructose corn syrup

● Mustard

● Mayonnaise

● Onion

● Olives

● Pesto

● Seeds (chia, flax, pumpkin, sesame)

● Most spices and herbs

If possible, avoid using salad dressings and limit hummus, honey, molasses, and artificial sweeteners.


Although the low FODMAP diets suggest a low consumption of wheat or other gluten-based grains, not a complete elimination of them – you should try to eat 100% gluten-free for a few weeks, and see if you notice further improvements in your symptoms.

Besides paying attention to FODMAP content of foods, it is also ideal keep a food journal to keep track eat every day and how your symptoms respond.

About NewLifeOutlook

NewLifeOutlook aims to empower people living with chronic mental and physical health conditions, encouraging them to embrace a positive outlook despite unfortunate circumstances.

Our articles are full of practical advice from people who have firsthand experience of IBS, and as a result truly understand what our readers are going through, and our community members are welcoming, understanding and supportive.

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