TRAVELING on the Low FODMAP diet: Tips to keep the belly happy (and a simple recipe)

Hi friends!! I am beyond STOKED to contribute to this blog 🙂 and I want to thank Colleen for welcoming me! I hope to be able to inspire others on this FODMAP journey, maybe making life a little easier!!!

Since MEMORIAL DAY is around the corner, which means Summer weekend getaways (woooohoooo)I thought what a better time than now to talk about traveling tips on the low FODMAP diet.  Lets face it, traveling can be super stressful when you are on a restrictive diet (and cause anxiety which is a BIGGGGG NO NO for us tummy issue folk). Here are few tips that work for me and keep me sane on my travels, since I refuse to let my dietary restrictions control MY LIFE ( I shall control them 😉 :


  • PEPPERMINT TEA BAGS: Perfect for taming an upset traveling tummy.
  • RICE CAKES: Lundberg brown rice are my fave.
  • JUSTINS ALMOND BUTTER PACKETS OR A JAR OF PEANUTBUTTER : I prefer PB since almond butter has a limit, 1 tbsp= about 12 almonds which is OVER the low FODMAP limit of 10 almonds. Nut butters are great to spread on your ricecakes with Banana coins for breakfast, snacks or whatev. Bananas are easy to find anywhere. Perfect airplane or train snack!
The perfect tummy friendly snack
The perfect tummy friendly snack
  • CINNAMON: for your bananas/ricecakes
  • OATMEAL: I bring gluten free Bobs Red Mill quick cooking oats in ziplock bags. Add boiling water in a paper cup, add chia seeds, bananas,peanutbutter, cinnamon: fiberfulBFAST!

    photo 3-2
  • CHIA SEEDS: Fiber when traveling!
  • ZIPLOCK BAGS/PLASTIC KNIVES/MEASURING CUPS: I pack these because you can easily carry your snacks around, use the knives to cut bananas, and measuring cups for your oats/chia seeds/nut butters.
  • PRE SOAKED NUTS : raw almonds,hazelnuts, walnuts (all limit 10), pumpkin seeds(2 tbsp), when soaked are easier for digestion.
  • DIY TRAILMIXES:  Throw in gluten free pretzels, nuts, any low fodmap cereal, ‘enjoy life’ choco chips.. etc, get creative here and know your limits..
  • HOMEMADE COOKIES: this is one of my FAV traveling items because they can keep well for a week in a mini fridge and it can work as a breakfast/snack/dessert when everyone else is indulging in ice-cream or whatever those non FODMAP people eat ;), take out a yummy cookie!

RECIPE: EASY Oatmeal Banana cookie

The easiest oatmeal cookie
The easiest oatmeal cookie
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 2 medium bananas
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

Optional add-ins: 10 or so chopped almonds,hazelnuts or pecans ,1/4c unsweetened shredded coconut, 2 tbsp raw pumpkin seeds, 1/4 c enjoy life chocolate chips..

Instructions: Mix ingredients together. Flatten about a tablespoon fof the mix on baking sheet sprayed with coconut oil. Bake at 350 c for 10-12 minutes until the bottoms are golden.  Makes about 10-15 cookies.




P.S.: AWESOME TIP FOR DINING OUT: I always tell my server that I have ALLERGIES rather than intolerances. I always find this makes them take it more serious!




I LOVE Cheese! What Can I Eat on Low Fodmap?

Lactose is on the high FODMAP list and if you malabsorb lactose, a type of sugar found in milk and other dairy products, you should limit cheese that contains lactose, like:

  • Cream Cheese
  • Ricotta
  • Haloumi
Perfecta Cheese
Perfecta Cheese

Most hard cheeses and other matured or ‘ripened’ cheeses (brie, feta, camembert) are low in lactose or lactose-free.  When lactose is not completely digested, it contributes to abdominal
bloating, pain, gas, and diarrhea, often occurring 30 minutes to two hours following the consumption of milk and milk products.

So again, where is Lactose found?

Cow’s, sheep’s, and goat’s milk

“What Should I Limit?”
Limit foods high in lactose such as yogurt, ice cream, milk, and ricotta and cottage cheeses.

If you feel you might be lactose intolerant, make an appointment with a Gastroenterologist to see which test she/he suggests -a Lactose tolerance blood test or a Hydrogen breath test. Lactose tolerance tests measure the ability of your intestines to break down lactose.

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What Does FODMAP Stand For?

September 25, 2013

FODMAPs is an acronym used to describe short chain carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine by some people with sensitive guts, namely those with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).

When certain food components (carbs and sugars like FODMAPs) are not absorbed in the small intestine, they make their way into the large intestine where the gut bacteria act upon them and have a feast. This interaction results in fermentation of the sugars within the carbs which triggers the release of gas.  The types of symptoms that occur are bloating, distention and a change in the speed of intestinal contractions (gut motility), leading to constipation (slow contractions) or diarrhea (fast contractions) or sometimes a combination of both.

FODMAPs include:

  • Fermentable
  • Oligosaccharides – are short chains of carbohydrate molecules linked together including Fructans, a chain of fructose molecules and Galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS) a chain of galactose molecules. Some Examples:
    • Fructans: Artichokes (Globe), Artichokes(Jerusalem), Garlic and garlic powder, 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.
    • Galacto-Oligosaccharides (GOS): Legume beans (eg. baked beans, kidney beans, bortolotti beans), Lentils, Chickpeas.
  • Disaccharides – are two carbohydrate molecules linked together including Lactose (composed of glucose and galactose), the sugar found in milk and dairy products.  Some Examples:
    • Milk, ice cream, custard, dairy desserts, condensed and evaporated milk, milk powder, yogurt, soft unripened cheeses (eg. ricotta, cottage, cream, marscarpone).
  • Monosaccharides – are single carbohydrate molecules including Fructose, the sugar found in many fruits and some vegetables.  It does not require any digestion before it is absorbed. When foods containing equal amounts of fructose and glucose are consumed, glucose helps fructose to be completely absorbed.  However, when fructose is present in greater quantities than glucose, fructose absorption depends upon the activity of sugar transporters located in the intestinal wall. The ability to absorb excess fructose varies from person to person. In people with fructose malabsorption,the capacity of sugar transporters is limited and excess fructose travels to the colon where fermentation occurs.  Some Examples:
    • Honey, Apples, Mango, Pear, Watermelon, High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), asparagus, artichokes and sugar snap peas.
  • And
  • Polyols – are a type of carbohydrate that humans can only partially digest and absorb in the small intestine.  Some Examples:
    • Apples, Apricots, Avocado, Cherries, Nectarines, Pears, Plums, Prunes, Mushrooms, as well as Sorbitol, Mannitol, Xylitol, Maltitol (all end in ‘ol) and Isomalt, used in sugar-free products like candy, flavored jam and jelly spreads, baked goods and baking mixes, chewing gum and cough drops as well as diet products.  Sugar alcohols mimic the sweetness of sucrose (table sugar), however, because their absorption is much slower, only a small amount of what is eaten is actually absorbed.

The Low-FODMAP diet and the restriction of certain carbs helps reduce the fermentation process and IBS symptoms in about 75% of patients.


I have had many problems throughout the years, first starting with digestion and the last few years I have had bloating so bad, I look pregnant and the pain from the distention is hard to live with.  I have to wear certain types of clothes just so I can be comfortable (dresses, leggings).  I have had to say no to social gatherings because I am so uncomfortable and have low energy.  Sometimes just working out is no fun because I feel like a huge balloon – from head to toe I feel utterly gross!

Since learning about the low-FODMAP diet, it has totally made sense why I have such horrible pain some days and not others.  The pain and bloating I experience can last for weeks on end or almost cause embarrassing situations.

dairy freeThere are foods that I love and I eat a lot of them (like garlic) but they are on the high-FODMAP list.  Just cutting them out so far has made a difference.

If you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or Celiac Disease I hope you will check out this blog every so often and share your own story too!

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Sources: Dr. Sue Shepherd, and the Canadian Digestive Health Foundation