It can be hard to shop for groceries when you’re dealing with dietary restrictions. It’s important to do your research, prep beforehand, and make sure that you can fully focus while you’re at the store.
One diet that can be especially tricky to follow is the low-FODMAP diet. If you’re temporarily living along those guidelines, here are a few tips to help you ensure that every trip to the supermarket is a success.
1. do your homework
Before you step foot in a store, you want to do some research. A low-FODMAP diet can be overwhelming at first, and you want to grasp the full understanding of what you’re trying to accomplish.
There are several different categories of FODMAPs, including:
- Fructans and galactans in foods such as garlic, onions, wheat, legumes, and soja.
- Lactose in foods such as milk, yogurt, ice cream, and butter.
- Fructose in foods such as fruits, vegetables, honey, and maple syrup.
- Polyols in foods such as coconut, sweet potato, and sugar-free products.
Monash University has a comprehensive list worth reviewing. They also have an app that can help you keep track of good and bad foods on the fly.
The low FODMAP diet takes place in phases. Early on, you eliminate most foods and then reintroduce things as you go along. This is critical to making the process successful, and you don’t want to take it lightly.
With that in mind, make sure to take time before you make each trip to come up with a list of what you’re getting. Consider the phase you’re in.
Are you swapping high-FODMAP grains for low-FODMAP grains? Are you addressing dairy right now? Fruits and veggies? If you need help getting started, FODMAP Friendly has a nifty resource to help with the initial shift to a low-FODMAP diet.
Once that phase is done, prep every list beforehand. Going into the store with a clear game plan is essential. When you’re there, stick to your list, too. Don’t wander.
When you’re distracted while shopping, it’s really easy to grab the wrong thing. When you’re on a low-FODMAP diet, you have to be careful to read everything on the label, too.
For instance, if you have lactose FODMAP sensitivity, you need to avoid normal milk and dairy products, but you can get lactose-free milk. If you aren’t focused, it’s easy to grab the wrong gallon and end up with a tummy ache.
The point here? Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to think things through. Also, shop when you’re awake, alert, and undistracted.
Finally, don’t forget that enzymes can help as you learn more about your digestive system on the FODMAP diet. Shifting how you eat will reveal FODMAP enzymes that your body struggles to create (Those are the tools your body uses to break down food in your GI tract.)
Once you’ve identified troublesome foods, you can reduce certain foods in your diet. You can also use FODMAP pills when necessary.
FODMAP enzyme capsules and tablets, like Intoleran’s, are useful to use alongside the FODMAP diet. When you use enzymes for FODMAPs, it allows you to eat related “trouble foods” without experiencing pain or discomfort afterward.
Going low FODMAP can be a big shift. However, if you do your homework, plan carefully, and take your time, you can make the dietary change work without stressing out along the way.
Remember, too, that as you discover your digestive system’s enzyme-related shortcomings, you can use FODMAP supplements to help. Intoleran offers the best FODMAP digestive enzymes on the market, and our dieticians are standing by to help you get the perfect products to restore a sense of joy to your eating again.