Survival guide to the festive season: part 2

Survival guide to the festive season: Part 2

Shirley Webber - Research Dietitian, 21 December 2016

Include carbs in your regular meals

This may be a daunting thought for some people with IBS but carbohydrates play a very important role in providing energy and fibre to your diet.

Having said that, choose your carbohydrates very carefully. Try opt for a “healthier carbohydrate” option when choosing your breads, grains, seeds or pasta. The grainier you can go the better to sustain your energy level for longer. Go for something with a low GI (glycaemic index).

The more refined a food is (eg. biscuits, cakes, chips or white breads) the quicker you will get an energy spike followed by a quick crash leaving you hungry and reaching for a quick fix snack.  

Some examples of low GI foods on the Monash low FODMAP app include:

  • Grainy bread (we have some certified bread that are low in FODMAPs packed with grains and seeds),
  • Basmati or brown rice
  • Pasta (try the Good Gut Pasta if you haven’t already – We’re loving this)
  • Oats, muesli or wholegrain oat cereal biscuits (mix this in with a smoothie, yoghurt or eat with your milk of choice)
  • Mixed non-starchy vegetables
  • Small serve of starchy vegetables (eg. ½ small sweet potato, 1 small potato, ½ cob sweet corn)
  • Small serves of fruit
  • Legumes (small serves tend to be well tolerated and are the perfect accompaniment to bulk up your salad or mixed vegetables)
  • Low fat dairy foods
  • Meats  (non-processed and fat trimmed)

Include these throughout your day to help you maintain momentum through the Christmas mayhem.

Prepare your pantry and have snacks ready

Survival guide to the festive season: Part 2_ef2170b1

When rushing from one task to the next it is easy to get stuck for time to prepare a meal with takeaway the easy option. Add a variety of foods to your shopping list to make sure low FODMAP options are always at hand:

  • Eggs, canned tuna, lentils or beans
  • Frozen fruits and vegetables, canned tomatoes or pasta sauce
  • Microwavable rice or gluten free or quinoa pasta (Check the app for more pasta options)
  • Rice crackers

When you do manage to prepare a meal make extra so you can stick some in the freezer and know that that when you get pressured for time at least you have a meal waiting in the fridge ready to go.

Stress and anxiety can increase symptoms and unfortunately symptoms increase stress. It’s a vicious cycle. It is tempting to reach for food as comfort during this time so make sure you have some low FODMAP nuts, fruits, yoghurt or muesli bars ready and avoid the symptom cycle.

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