FODMAPs are a group of fermentable carbohydrates.
They are notorious for causing common digestive issues like bloating, gas, stomach pain, diarrhea and constipation in those who are sensitive to them.
This includes a surprising number of people, particularly those with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Luckily, studies have shown that restricting foods high in FODMAPs can dramatically improve these symptoms.
This article explains what FODMAPs are and who should avoid them.
FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides and Polyols
These terms are the scientific names given to groups of carbs that may cause digestive issues for some people.
FODMAPs typically consist of short chains of sugars linked together and they are not completely absorbed by your body.
These two key characteristics are why some people are sensitive to them
Here are the main groups of FODMAPs:
Oligosaccharides: Carbs in this group include fructans (fructo-oligosaccarides and inulin) and galacto-oligosaccharides. Key dietary sources include wheat, rye, various fruits and vegetables, pulses and legumes.
Disaccharides: Lactose is the main FODMAP in this group. Key dietary sources include milk, yogurt and soft cheese.
Monosaccharides: Fructose is the main FODMAP in this group. Key dietary sources include various fruit, honey and agave nectar.
Polyols: Carbs in this group include sorbitol, mannitol and xylitol. Key dietary sources include various fruits and vegetables, as well as some sweeteners like those in sugar-free gum.