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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I'm Abby from Raleigh. I was diagnosed with IBS when I was 12, and I imagine I received the same random advice as many of you: Reduce stress, Eat more fiber, etc. None of it has ever helped much. I've gotten where I am mostly through experimentation, luck, and persistence. In grad school (around 2000), I read a celebrity nutrition book that inspired me (Marilu Henner's Total Health Makeover). While her way of eating wasn't THE ANSWER for me, it helped me work out that I am definitely lactose intolerant. After that, I decided to keep a food journal. From that, I worked out many things: I'm better at digesting cooked vegetables than raw, Cauliflower is the Devil, I should never have OJ on an empty stomach. The next helpful book I found was Heather Van Vorous's Eating for IBS. She had so many helpful suggestions, and many of them matched my own personal experiment findings. That book was such a great find for me. But I still had symptoms.

I've come to just live with symptoms. "Yeah, I'm Abby. I generally feel kinda shitty. It's cool." But it's not. I want to feel good!

The latest experiment was going gluten free during January and February of this year. I was somewhat less constipated, but I still had a lot of bloating, gas, and the occasional constipation. I went back on gluten briefly, and things weren't noticeably worse, except when I ate gluten meal after meal. But a little didn't seem to be a problem.

Did I mention I also get migraines? They used to be AWFUL, but once I worked out that I am very sensitive to MSG (by any name), and the ites and ates (nitrates, sufites, etc), I gave those up and have managed to keep my headaches to more dull aches and brain fogs. Yay?

About a month ago, I was allergy tested. I learned none of these are food allergies. I never thought they were. Allergist referred me to a dietitian. And the dietitian has put me on a Low-FODMAP diet. I've been at it about 10 days. It's HARD! But I'm doing it. There is no way I could keep this up forever, but I'm lucky. I live in a great little city. I'm right downtown. I know a lot of people working in restaurants (servers and chefs), so I've still been able to eat out... a little. I can't imagine how I'd manage to go out if I lived in a more suburban environment. I'm so hoping that I'm able to add a lot of things back. Fingers VERY crossed for onions and garlic. Avoiding those is SO HARD!

What else? Oh, I am using Evernote Food to track what I'm eating, and I'm feeding all the posts to a little blog, so I can share that with you:

FODMAP should be called Foodmap or Foghat!

It's mostly just me tracking food, but there are some comments there about my experience, some useful links, and some silly posts about "foodmaps" and "Foghat," since the entire inspiration for the blog was a conversation with a friend about how we feel like they could have come up with a better name for this than "FODMAP"!!

I think that's it. Glad to be here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Probably bloating. As far as being open to alternative methods, I might be, but right now, I'm following the standard paths being suggested by my dietitian and my gastroenterologist. While they are standard medical practitioners, I have not been prescribed any drugs. I'm on a low-FODMAP diet and yesterday, I picked up the breath tests for Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth and Fructose Malabsorption. We decided that given how obvious my lactose intolerance is, there was little point to bothering with the test.
 
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