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Our Ask an Expert Column allows you to submit your questions anonymously to our panel of health professionals. To submit a question of your own, visit liberomagazine.com/ask
What are your thoughts on the FODMAP diet for those who have a history with an eating disorder or disordered eating?
When working with clients with a history of disordered eating experiencing digestive issues, I tend to suggest more gentle approaches before using the low FODMAP diet.
For example, we might experiment with:
- Reducing common gut disrupters like artificial sugars, added fibre (ex: inulin), and caffeine
- Introducing probiotics, digestive enzymes, a magnesium supplement, or herbal supplements (like Iberogast)
- Breathing exercises
- Warm beverages like peppermint tea
- And more!
When we have exhausted these options, we may consider trialing a modified, less restrictive version of the low FODMAP diet.
I encourage clients to regularly assess how these dietary changes are making them feel. Being reflective can help to identify any reappearance of unhelpful thoughts or behaviours.
In conclusion, I believe a modified low FODMAP diet can be helpful for some, especially when approached within the context of self-care.
I would encourage getting support from an eating disorder dietitian if this accessible, as well as an increased awareness of how our relationship with food is being impacted by these dietary changes.
Josée Sovinsky, RD
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Josée Sovinsky, RD is a weight inclusive Registered Dietitian in Toronto, ON with a passion for working with people with eating disorders, mental health issues and body image struggles. Her nutrition counselling is grounded in principles of feminism, social justice, size acceptance and person-centered support. She supports clients to find a way to nourish themselves compassionately, without focusing on weight as an outcome. Outside of her work, Josée loves to sing, read historical fiction, watch Star Trek, and bake her favourite French-Canadian desserts.