Tomorrow I have to start the Low-FODMAP diet. You know what that means? You have to avoid high FODMAP foods. FODMAPS are fructose, lactose, fructans, galactans, and polyols.
I have been literally avoiding this for months. My doctor casually handed me a sheet of paper on my way out the door -back in October- telling me that I should go on this diet. Clearly, I wasn’t a big go getter on the topic when it started with -no dairy, no gluten, and then continued on to things that everyone tells me is healthy- apples, beans, cauliflower, garlic, onion, honey, hummus, soybeans, and so on and so forth.
Despite my stack of low-FODMAP cookbooks and blogs sitting here (while I eat my goodbye bowl of ice cream…) I feel unprepared for what tomorrow brings.
I mean, when you look at these recipes they include all of the specialty ingredients- not to mention $6/loaf for GF bread and not even most GF pasta fits into the low-FODMAP diet. They also seem to think that you can completely just clear out your cupboards in a single go and replace with all of these specialty foods. My food budget for a family of 4 is $320/month. That number fluctuates, but that is where it stands today.
I have been slowly eliminating foods over the past few weeks. This has been to both help me adjust, as well as helping my kids learn that-yes, they can have milk and grapefruit, but please don’t try to share with mom.
There are a few other factors that make these low-FODMAP recipes seem out of reach for my household. 1. My loving husband enjoys predictability in his meals. He is one of these people who would generally be content with a 14 day rotation of food. He is a huge support for me through this, but he would be less thrilled with a whole new rotation of food. 2. I have a 2 year old and a 5 year old. Many of their favorite fruits and veggies are on the no list – apples, grapefruit, snap peas, pears, peaches, to name a few. Changing the diets of small children can be tricky, well at least with my small children. 3. One of my lovely children has an actual fear of prepared foods. She has a dietician and a meal plan that does not compliment the low-FODMAP lifestyle. 4. I am generally opposed to preparing more than one meal at a time. (Esp. when you never know when the 2 yr old will eat or throw dinner across the room.)
All that said, we will see how this goes. I think my doctor wants me on this indefinitely. I am going to start with the 3-4 week cleanse and then a week trying out the different FODMAP categories to see if I can isolate the problem area. I can not sign up for this without an end date in sight at this time. I know something is wrong and I will ultimately have to change my diet for the long run, but if I think of it that way it will make me depressed.
Please wish me and my family luck as we embark on this journey. I have struggled feeding my family for years and now this complicates things further. I plan on using this space to post recipes (most likely with non-pintrest worthy photos because my home has nearly zero natural light) as well as my own insights and struggles with the process.
I hope my therapy project can help others as well. We’ll see how this goes!