Tag Archives: APD

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a condition where a set of symptoms, including abdominal bloating and pain, wind and altered bowel movements affect sufferers’ lives. It is a common condition affecting up to 15% of the general population and is called a Functional Gastrointestinal Disorder. This means that the nerves and muscles of the gut may not be working in combination optimally causing digestive upset and bowel issues.

Depending on your symptoms a diagnosis of IBS is best made after other, more serious conditions, are excluded. Some tests organised by your GP or a Gastroenterologists can help to rule out Helicobacter Infection, Coeliac Disease, Diverticular Disease to name a few of the organic gut disorders .

Getting some control back over your bowel symptoms will mean you can spend more time on the fun things in life and less time in the bathroom! This is where a change in some aspects of your diet including some difficult to digest/absorb foods, food volume and timing can help. It is best done in an organised manner to ensure that the minimum number of restrictions results and the maximum amount of comfort.


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Diet for Digestion-the internet version of dietary restrictions-help!

An internet search for a few minutes on the topic of digestive health suggests your diet is to blame for many of your gut symptoms. The list below shows some of the common food and drink items that are to blame, according to ‘Dr Google”. The internet is a wonderful source of information and mis-information and the dietary restrictions list below came from my brief search on this topic.

Excluding coffee, tea, alcohol, fibre, meat, soy, carbohydrate, dairy/lactose, honey, fruit/fructose, wheat, rye, yeast, legumes, onion, garlic, sugar,processed foods, artificial sweeteners are general results.

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Many people with digestive symptoms start omitting one food or group of foods and when symptoms don’t improve they omit another food group and so on until their diet includes a very small range of foods. Eating such a small range of foods makes meals repetitive and not very enjoyable. Nutrient needs will not be met and over time health deteriorates further.

Is there another way to ease digestive distress?

Yes, get an organised diagnosis plan to exclude underlying disorders and take it from there. An Accredited Practising Dietitian(APD) with a digestion interest will help you put this together and work out which dietary restrictions may be required to manage your symptoms and for how long the restrictions should be followed. If you live in Perth come contact me for an appointment or


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Accurate Diagnosis

Vector-Entrepreneurship-WomanAccurate Diagnosis of the problem is the opposite to random diet trials which sufferers may be experimenting with.

Diagnosis is essential because just improving symptoms through dietary restriction may just be a band-aid measure. Incomplete investigation can hide serious intestinal or other  problems and these need excluding. Unnecessary restrictive diets also threaten nutritional status and overall health, definitely something we want to avoid.

Diagnosis will usually involve an Accredited Practising Dietitian specialising in digestive issues, your Doctor, and in many cases a referral to a Gastroenterologist (Gastrointestinal Specialist) whose specialist knowledge can determine essential tests and interpret the results.

Putting a finger on the exact digestive issue can be surprisingly difficult in many cases and needs a concerted plan to escape the treadmill and frustration of unstructured trial and error.

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Fibre and your Bowel


The fibre content of your diet refers to the part of what you eat that is the carbohydrate fraction of your diet resistant to the digestion and absorption in the small bowel. Some types of fibre are called polysaccharides, oligosaccharides and lignins. The dietary fibre part of our diet promotes actions that are laxative (increasing movement of bowel contents) ,improve our bodies blood glucose response after eating, lower blood cholesterol as well as promoting the action of gut bacteria to make substances that improve bowel health.

Fibre types vary in the degree to which they will be fermented in the large intestine by the action of the bacteria there so some result in a lot of wind production and others less so. Because of this the use if high fibre diets or fibre supplements to treat constipation may cause bloating and pain if the fibre type is a fermentable one such as wheat bran or psyllium. The low FODMAP plant foods and the non-fermentable fibres found in the Sterculia plant (Normafibe supplement) and Methylcellulose (Citrocel) can improve symptoms of constipation more gently.

Those with diarhoea-dominant bowel symptoms may need a total lower fibre intake and some other dietary modifications to slow the transit of gut contents.

Modifying the types of fibre in your diet can assist to control your bowel symptoms and sorting out which diet and supplement best suit your condition can be very helpful.


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What are FODMAPs ?

FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides and Polyols!!! These are a large groups of mostly naturally occurring carbohydrates which can be poorly absorbed in the small intestine and fermented in the large intestine by the bacteria there. You may know them by names such as fructose, lactose, Sorbitol, Mannitol or Isomaltose to name a few.

Research suggests limiting the diet in FODMAP-rich foods can reduce the symptoms that plague sufferers of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) including reducing the altered bowel habit(diarrhoea/constipation or both), bloating, excessive wind and abdominal discomfort/pain. With the help of an Accredited Practising Dietitian(APD) a low FODMAP diet trial can be arranged to suit your individual lifestyle so that you can comply with the recommendations and see if this approach offers you symptom relief.

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Veggies- the low FODMAP varieties



Veggies are good for us right? Yes, nutritionally they are one of the best group of foods we can eat in large volumes for good health and reducing our disease risk. This doesn’t mean that all veggies are easy to digest and individuals with symptoms of nausea, bloating, excess wind, abdominal pain, constipation or diarrhoea (big list!) may need to get eat only the most digestible vegetables that have lower levels of the FODMAP’s.

This list includes green beans, potato, carrot, capsicum, asian greens, jap pumpkin, tomatoes  and zucchini. Trialing the removal of other vegetables such as onion and garlic and limiting serve size of broccoli, sweet corn, snow peas and butternut pumpkin are some of the changes used in the test-phase of the low FODMAP diet.

Meals made with low FODMAP ingredients, as shown in the Lunch ideas post can help ease Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms and enhance your low FODMAP diet compliance. An Accredited Practising Dietitian with a Digestion specialty can help you put together a menu that will suit your preferences, home and work life so that you can trial this revolutionary diet approach.

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What are some easy lunch ideas?


Some easy to digest lunch choices will include foods that have a low digestive load. We call these low FODMAP foods and generally if you buy lunch out you realise that not many options are available. Some items that fit the bill are shown below. I mostly recommend taking leftovers or making a dish that transports well and can be taken for two or three lunches in a row.

‘Fried Rice’ with cooked white or brown rice(more fibre if you need it) as a base, chopped green beans, diced carrot and capsicum, chopped bean sprouts along with some protein such as egg omelette(shred and add) or some cooked chicken. For flavour without FODMAP use garlic oil and ginger when you stirfry the veggies, add the cooked rice and the protein and flavour with a little soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil.

Roast veggie salad includes roasted Jap pumpkin, potato, fennel, zucchini and carrot. Cut these into small sized pieces and toss with a little olive oil and roast for an hour or till done at 180 degrees. These veggies can be tossed with a little rocket, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper and taken with a little leftover protein you have eg cooked chicken, meat or fish, a boiled egg, some pan-fried tofu or a 1/2 cup serve of drained canned brown lentils if you are up to trialing legumes.

Corn Tortilla with cold sliced meat or chicken and salad. Warm the tortilla and meat/chicken in the microwave and add some easier to digest salad -grated carrot, tomato, baby spinach – as well as some grated cheese. Roll it all up and enjoy. If you cook some extra meat or chicken for an evening meal use it up in this way. Alternatively the flesh from a plain rotisserie chicken could be used.

From the shops: you may need to settle for a salad of greens, tomato, cucumber, carrot and some protein like egg/chicken/roast beef/ fetta cheese. A salad with some sort of carbohydrate food will fill you up more so look for quinoa, sweet potato or potato. An alternative shop lunch is sushi with plain fillings eg raw salmon/tuna and cucumber/ avocado or a vegetarian sushi which will have carrot/cucumber/egg/tofu type fillings

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For an Appointment

Come and see Clemency, a Perth Accredited Practising Dietitian with a special interest in digestion. You can call or email, details below.

Please call reception:    Ph 08-92042588


or send us an email:   admin@thenutritionspecialists.com.au


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Address :Suite 2/39 King George St,  Innaloo. Perth WA 6050


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