The low FODMAP diet is recommended to improve digestive health and function and regulate bacterial colonisation in both the small intestine and the colon. Following the low FODMAP diet for 2-6 weeks can offer relief of gastrointestinal
symptoms such as bloating, abdominal discomfort, irregular bowel habits and IBS.

FODMAPs are a collection of short chain carbohydrates and sugar alcohols found naturally in foods or as food additives. FODMAPs include fructose. fructans, galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS), lactose and polyols

The FODMAP acronym is:







Sue Shepherd is a dietician that was part of the original research team to discover the FODMAP diet and she states that the diet involves a phase 1 and a phase 2.

Phase 1 runs for 4-6 weeks and restricts all high fodmap foods, which includes the following:

Excess Fructose:

  • Honey,
  • Apples,
  • Mango,
  • Pear,
  • Watermelon,
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup.


  • Artichokes (Globe and Jerusalem),
  • Garlic (in large amounts),
  • Leek,
  • Onion (brown, white, Spanish, onion powder),
  • Spring Onion (white part),
  • Shallots,
  • Wheat (in large amounts),
  • Rye (in large amounts),
  • Barley (in large amounts),
  • Inulin,
  • Fructo-oligosaccharides.


  • Milk,
  • icecream,
  • custard,
  • dairy desserts,
  • condensed and evaporated milk,
  • milk powder,
  • yoghurt,
  • soft unripened cheeses (eg. ricotta, cottage, cream, mascarpone).

Galacto-Oligosaccharides (GOS):

  • Legume beans (eg. baked beans,
  • kidney beans, bortolotti beans),
  • Lentils,
  • Chickpeas


  • Apples,
  • Apricots,
  • Nectarines,
  • Pears,
  • Plums,
  • Prunes,
  • Mushrooms,
  • sorbitol (420),
  • mannitol (421),
  • xylitol (967),
  • maltitol (965)
  • isomalt (953)

This is a big list of food to eliminate!

Phase 2 – Is the gradual re-introduction of eliminated foods to determine the level of toleration for each client and to establish a long-term diet plan. The shepherdworks website advocates this as a short-term not a long-term approach. They also state clients should not undertake this diet without the supervision of a qualified dietician.

The shepherdworks fodmap diet is an actual plan that has a time frame of start to end. It is a very strict and limiting approach that clients may find difficult to comply with. Which is why this diet should only be used short term to manage symptoms and is not a long term solution.

I see clients that have permanently removed foods from their diet because they react even after following the FODMAP’s diet. So, this does not appear to fix the long term issue, it only addresses it while you are on the diet.

Following this strict regime for a long time can lead to nutrient deficiencies as you can see by the amount of foods that need to be emitted.  Whilst I am not really a fan of this approach, and there are many practitioners that are, I do understand it can be useful to reduce symptoms. But for me as a practitioner I take a different approach. I look at the overall digestive system and try and work out why the dysfunction is there to begin with. I also use a different gut program that helps repair the gut so that you can introduce foods and not have a reaction. This is really the best outcome.

So if you are looking for an alternative to FODMAP’s or you have tried it without much success, then maybe its time to come have a chat and find out what can be done for your gut symptoms.



FODMAP diet resources | Monash FODMAP – Monash Fodmap. (2017). Retrieved November 23, 2017, from

Low FODMAP Diet | Shepherd Works. (2017). Retrieved November 23, 2017, from

What are FODMAPs? | FODMAP Friendly. (2017). Retrieved November 23, 2017, from

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