If you’re wondering what happened to the remaining two days of last week, the best way I can explain it is that ‘life happened’. I ended up going out for dinners and eating low FODMAP leftovers on all the other days.
Lesson learned from week 1: don’t bother trying to cook a new meal every night and especially if you’re just cooking for yourself. Two reasons for this:
This is what my new and more realistic meal plan looks like for this week
Here is my recipe for my homemade muesli number 2. My god is it delicious! It is also high in fibre which keeps me full until mid-morning. Ideally eaten after exercise because it can sit a little heavy, I was definitely feeling muesli creeping back up my throat when I was doing my jump squats this morning, worth it! I have it with lactose-free milk and 1/2 a banana to get my fruit intake up every day.
Behold my breakfast in all its glory!
Warning – your house will smell delicious and like you’re baking cookies and everyone gets really disappointed when they realise you’re just making cereal.
Morning Tea: it was a carrot. I didn’t feel it really deserved a photo.
Lunch: Leftover Moroccan Lamb
I served this with some zucchini, spinach and polenta. Polenta was pretty tasty, but kind of a nightmare to make. I had to stir it for about 30 minutes and managed to drop a glass baking tray on my toe in the process. Luckily my yelp of agony was enough to recruit the help of my housemates who nurtured my polenta while I was limping around the house trying to find pain-killers and an ice-pack.
Dinner: chicken tagine. I forgot to take a photo! However there are about 1 million servings left so I’ll grab one when I am eating leftovers for the rest of the year.
Breakfast/Morning Tea: same old, still delicious.
Lunch: Sushi (purchased).
I will not disclose the location of where I purchased this sushi. All I can say is, I’ll be feeling lucky if I make it through the rest of the day alive. Raw fish that does not taste fresh rings alarm bells in my head. Did the threat of potential food poisoning and horrible stomach pains stop me? Of course not, I don’t think I’ve ever missed a meal in
Dinner: Green fish curry with a lot of vegetables.
In an effort to practice what I preach, I tried to really bump up this dish with lots of veggies. Think it doesn’t look very tasty? You would be right! This meal was prettttty bland and I now have about 5 frozen portions of it which I’m going to have to endure for 5 more meals. I’m going to a friend’s place for dinner tonight and I said I’d provide dinner to try and off-load a couple of portions of this curry-failure. What are friends for?
nothing too exciting and new today. I had a peanut butter, blueberry and banana smoothie. Probably didn’t need the peanut butter, but if you’re a nut-nut, then you’ll probably like it (see what I did there?)
Breakfast/Morning Tea: SAME! It’s so good and so easy. Mmm morning tea, very
liberal with the feta, so delicious
Lunch: homemade gnocchi with roast capsicum and chilli sauce.
OH MY GOD THIS WAS GREAT! It took about a trillion hours to make but it was so worth it. I’ll be dreaming about this one
Dinner: Chicken tagine
I also made a giant batch of this and frozen it in portions. Bumped up the veg with extra zucchini and carrots.
Okay so by this stage I felt like I’d achieved the purpose of the elimination diet – good symptom control. Mission accomplished! We usually recommend the elimination diet for about 4 weeks because the first couple of weeks you’re still getting your head around what you can/can’t eat. HOWEVER, because I’m a dietitian who works in food tolerances, I had a pretty good idea of what I was doing from the get-go and got things organised and under control pretty quick. So FODMAP-phase 2 time…food challenges!
I decided to go with fructose first because I’ve long suspected fructose as a trigger for my symptoms. I tested fructose using half a mango. A good option because mango is HIGH in fructose and LOW in sorbitol. This means if I get symptoms I can confidently say fructose was the culprit. I had this mango at about 1pm.
How did it go – terribly! By the time I went to bed my abdomen was swollen like a balloon. It was a reminder of how intense my bloating can be. The symptoms hung around the next morning too and I was running in the Mother’s Day Classic and had stomach cramps the entire run. Lesson learned – don’t food challenge before you have a running event!
I’m smiling in this photo, but actually dying inside. However, after the run my symptoms started to clear-up. This is why it is important to leave a couple of days of a ‘wash-up’ period in between food challenges to let you regain symptom-control. I intend to rechallenge fructose with 1/4 mango to determine whether I’m highly or moderately
If you find you’re intolerant it’s really important to re-challenge at a half-dose so you know how strict to be with reducing certain foods. It’s also important not to just completely cut things out – there is emerging research that people who stay on the FODMAP elimination diet for a long period of time, or eliminate a particular FODMAP, become even more sensitive to it in the future. Try to continue to have your problematic FODMAPs in small quantities. Just remember that with irritable bowel syndrome these symptoms are NOT causing you any gastrointestinal damage.