Researchers at Monash University in Australia coined the FODMAP acronym to classify groups of carbohydrates (sugars and fibers) found in foods and beverages, that are similar in length and structure.
These, "short-chain" carbohydrates have been shown to be poorly absorbed in individuals living with digestive sensitivities, including Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS),
and resulting in a common set of gastrointestinal symptoms including abdominal pain, bloating and gas, constipation and/or diarrhea.
FODMAP stands for the following:
F – Fermentable – Quickly broken down by bacteria in the gut and produce gas
O – Oligosaccharides (Fructo-and galacto-oligosaccharides) -- Found in select vegetables, legumes, fruits, grains, nuts and teas
D – Disaccharides (Lactose) – Found in select milk and milk products
M – Monosaccharides (Fructose) – Found in select fruits, vegetables and sweeteners
A – And
P – Polyols (Sugar Alcohols) – Found in select fruits, vegetables and artificial sweeteners
Watch this short video: What are FODMAPs? ©2016 The Regents of the University of Michigan. All rights reserved. Used under license by Nestlé.
View and print this overview of The Low FODMAP Diet: At A Glance for easy reference.
More technical information…
- Fructooligosaccharides (FOS, fructans) are a chain of 3–9 fructose molecules with a glucose molecule at the end
- Galactooligosaccharides (GOS, galactans) are a chain of 3–9 galactose molecules with a fructose molecule at the end
- Disaccharides, specifically lactose (a natural milk sugar), is made up of 2 sugar molecules (glucose and galactose)
- Monosaccharides, specifically fructose, is made up of a single sugar molecule where excessive amounts can be difficult to absorb
- Polyols are known as sugar alcohols including sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol and maltitol