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I’ve been following a low-FODMAP vegan diet since July. I’ve tested pretty much every food that I’ve been missing (avocado, beans, and garlic, for example). It’s been tasty, but not always fun when I have a reaction. But I know more than I did five months ago, so here are some tips that may help you.
Low-FODMAP Vegan Diet Tips
- You may be able to tolerate small amounts of high-FODMAP foods. I found that I can have one meal with a single serving of FODMAP foods about twice per week.
- If you slip up, it may not be so bad. I think that my digestive system has healed quite a bit, so when I eat something that used to upset my stomach it doesn’t bother me as much. I don’t have the same severity of reaction and I recover faster.
- Small slip-ups aren’t going to kill me. If I want to go out to eat and there isn’t anything that follows the diet strictly, as long as it’s still vegan and gluten-free I will eat it. I may feel bad later, but it will get better soon enough. I’m not going to forego eating out altogether if I can’t find a place that meets all the rules. So if you don’t have a food allergy or a severe reaction to a food, maybe give try foods that are now low-FODMAP so that social situations aren’t so difficult.
- I have some foods that cause a worse reaction than others. For example, having large amounts of sugar do me in. Not only do they cause an upset stomach, but also sometimes nausea and joint pains. So sometimes it isn’t worth it.
- The diet can be working but you can still have other food intolerances. If you follow an elimination plan and find that you are still having a reaction to foods that are on the “acceptable” list, try cutting them out and see if you feel better. I found that even though baby spinach is supposed to be ok, I can’t eat it in any amount. I knew this before from a previous challenge diet. But if you don’t know that ahead of time, you may think the diet is not working.
- Balance is key. It’s probably alright to have a few nutrient deficiencies while in the elimination phase of this diet. Track your food intake through a diet app or website such as Cron-O-Meter to find out where you’re lacking. But if you discover that you will be using the diet long-term, it’s important to evaluate what you’re eating and make sure you incorporate foods that have all the important vitamins and minerals. Nutrients are absorbed best from foods rather than powders in shakes or capsules/tablets, but if you’re having a real problem with eating all the right nutrients then taking a supplement may be a good idea.
Overall, my plan is to continue on this diet. Thanks to making this change, I’ve been feeling much, much better. For more posts about this topic, please read:
- A typical day eating a vegan low-FODMAP diet
- Dealing with relapses/digestive upsets while on a special diet
- My new diet is keeping me out of the doctor’s office (and testing lab!)
- Update on vegan gluten-free low-FODMAP diet
- For ideas of what to make while on this diet, you can visit the Recipes section
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