FOR PEOPLE WITH DIGESTIVE ISSUES, FOLLOWING A LOW FODMAP DIET CAN MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE. WE SHARE
THE BASICS OF THE DIET – PLUS RECIPES TO TRY.
It can make a huge difference to those with irritable.
While FODMAP might look like a strange nonsensical word to some, it’s six letters that can make a huge difference to those with irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive issues.
Known to nutritionists as Fermentable, Oligo-saccharides, Disaccharides, Mono saccharides and Polyols, the term FODMAP covers a wide-ranging group of short-chain carbohydrates that can cause gastro problems for some people. But sticking to low FODMAP foods can help to manage the symptoms.
How FODMAPS can affect the body
When foods in the FODMAP category are not absorbed by the body, it can cause a range of uncomfortable side effects including diarrhoea, constipation, excess gas, bloating and stomach pain. For some people, these symptoms can be severe and debilitating, but as everyone is unique and reacts to different foods in different ways, it can be hard to pinpoint the culprit. A process of elimination and reintroduction of certain foods can be a good starting point to determine the cause. Extensive research from Melbourne’s Monash University led to the creation of the low-FODMAP diet, which has proven effective for many sufferers of IBS.
What you eat throughout the day adds up – this is known as stacking. So if you’re feeling
uncomfortable after dinner, take a look at your breakfast, lunch and snacks, to see if gut issues may be related to what you ate earlier.
Examples of High FODMAP foods
Onions, garlic, leek, beetroot, celery, asparagus, sweetcorn, watermelons, pears, apples, plums; dairy products including cow’s milk, yoghurt, and cream; breads and pasta containing wheat; legumes and pulses; cashews and pistachios.
Examples of low FODMAP foods
Green beans, courgettes, carrot, cucumber, lettuce, tomato, bok choy, orange, mandarin, grapes; lactose-free milk and yoghurts; fish, chicken, firm tofu, tempeh; gluten-free bread, oats, rice, quinoa, pumpkin seeds.
*For more information see monashfodmap.com
*The low FODMAP diet isn’t designed to be followed long-term, and it doesn’t suit everyone. If you feel you would benefit from following a low FODMAP eating plan, chat to a GP or nutritionist first.
The FODMAP friendly kitchen
Cheat’s buckwheat pizza
» MAKES 3 MEDIUM PIZZAS
FOR THE BASE
125g buckwheat flour
70g brown rice flour
1 tbsp dried Italian mixed herbs
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 tsp maple syrup
180ml almond milk
3 tbsp olive oil
FOR THE LEMON BASIL PESTO
4 large handfuls of fresh basil leaves
50g pine nuts
50g freshly grated pecorino cheese
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
90ml extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp garlic−infused olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
FOR THE TOPPING
1 courgette, thinly sliced with a V slicer 4 big handfuls of fresh spinach or spring greens 125g firm goat’s cheese, sliced 30g grated pecorino cheese 1 Preheat the oven to 180°C and prepare three baking trays, splashing a generous tablespoon of olive oil on top of each and spreading to cover.
2 Make the pesto first by combining the basil, pine nuts, cheese, lemon zest and juice in a food processor and pulsing until coarsely combined. Add the olive oil and garlic-infused oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Leave to one side.
3 To make the base, put the dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix to combine. Make a well in the centre and break in the egg. Beat into the mix along with the maple syrup and then slowly add the milk, mixing until combined. Put spoonfuls of the mixture onto the prepared trays to create three pizzas, and use a spatula to spread the mixture into circle or square shapes, approximately 1cm thick.
4 Bake for approximately 10 minutes until very light golden brown (the mixture should be cooked but still not quite crisp). Spread the pesto over the cooked base (you might not need all of it) and top with the greens, courgette and cheeses. Bake for 7–10 minutes until golden brown at the edges and the cheese has melted.
Lightened up lasagne
» SERVES 6-8
2 tbsp olive oil
1 parsnip, peeled and diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
1 red capsicum, diced
1kg minced beef
2 tins (each 400g) chopped tomatoes
2 tsp dried oregano
2 bay leaves
Sea salt and freshly ground black
2 butternut squash
100g grated mozzarella
1 In a large saucepan, heat 1 tbsp of the oil and sauté the parsnip, carrot and capsicum until soft. Add the mince and cook until browned.
2 Pour in the tomatoes and water and stir in the oregano, bay leaves and basil. Simmer for roughly 1 hour until the meat is tender and saucy.
3 Taste and season.
4 Preheat the oven to 180°C. Peel and cut the squash into thin slices, as if lasagne sheets. Bake in the oven with a drizzle of olive oil for 15 minutes. Once tender, you can get to work on layering the lasagne; just quickly fish out your bay leaves from your meat first. In a baking dish, add one layer of the mince mixture, one layer of spinach and one layer of squash, repeating until all of the ingredients are used up. Sprinkle with the cheese and bake in the oven at the same temperature for 30 minutes, or until the top is crispy.
Lemon and mint Loaf
» SERVES 8-10
160g brown sugar
80ml olive oil, plus a little for greasing
Juice and zest of 2
45g ground almonds
30g buckwheat flour
½ tsp salt
1½ tsp baking powder
Leaves from 3 sprigs of
mint, finely chopped
FOR THE SYRUP
50g brown sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Preheat the oven to 150°C (and line and grease a 900g loaf tin (approx 23 x 13 x 7 cm) with a little olive oil.
2 Crack the eggs into a large bowl and pour in the sugar. Beat together until light and creamy (keep going for about 4 minutes or so). Continue to whisk and slowly pour in the olive oil, until all of the oil is combined. Whisk in the lemon zest.
3 In a separate bowl, stir together the polenta, ground almonds, buckwheat flour, salt and baking powder. Sieve this mixture over the eggs and sugar in stages, alternating with the lemon juice and folding until just combined.
4 Coat the mint leaves in a little buckwheat flour (this stops them from rising to the top as much) and add them to the bowl, gently folding once more until incorporated. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin (the batter should come roughly half way up the side of the tin) and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
5 To make the syrup, place the sugar in a small saucepan along with the lemon juice and water. Heat over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Increase the heat, boil for 4 minutes until slightly reduced and syrupy, then remove from the heat.
6 Remove the loaf from the oven and let it cool briefly in the tin. While it is still warm, turn it out of the tin, peel off the lining paper and put the loaf on a wire rack set over a baking tray or similar. Use a skewer, or a cocktail stick, to poke holes all over the surface of the warm cake. Pour the lemon syrup over the cake, letting it sink in.
7 Decorate with lemon slices, lemon zest and mint leaves.