It’s one week post launch of Fructopia and the tingling hasn’t stopped yet. After turning the whole blog thing over and over in my mind and testing
numerous two blogging platforms for months, I’m pretty surprised how fast everything happened the moment I finally settled for one service. Now I am out and about with a topic that on the one hand is quite intimate, on the other hand affects so many people and still lacks a lot of attention. Time to change that.
Three years back on the timeline. After the diagnosis and a first moderately successful online research I found myself standing in a supermarket. What can I tell you, it was a true nightmare. No more instinctive grabbing of products I was used to buying for many years, no more carefree rushing through the aisles. From this moment on I had to say goodbye to the daily, learned shopping routine I was used to. I literally spent more than an hour in the supermarket, moving along the aisles step by step, taking out one product after another, reading label over label, just to put the products back in place right afterwards. Most of the things available in a normal supermarket contain sugars, a dozen “E’s” or strange additives such as onion powder. Stuff my maltreated stomach doesn’t like too much. When I finally made my way to the cashier not that many products had actually found their way into the shopping basket. I don’t remember what it was, but I guess it was something like feta cheese, salad and a cucumber.
To be honest, it takes a long, long time for this frustration and feeling of powerlessness to vanish. Frustration simply because I no longer knew what to buy, what to cook and what to order when eating out. I was scared to buy, cook or order the wrong thing. Scared of stomach pains and bloating. Powerless because I couldn’t do a thing about it, besides accepting it. That has been difficult, really difficult. If you’ve recently received the same diagnosis, you probably know what I’m talking about. And I’m sorry to tell you, these feelings won’t go away too soon. You will have to deal with the frustration and powerlessness for a while. I think it took me at least a year to find balance in my new eating routine.
In order to help you figure out what your stomach might tolerate or not, I made a list of “foods to enjoy with ibs”, ingredients I usually have at home or eat fairly regularly. I deliberately say “might tolerate” because there are probably things on my list that your stomach won’t handle too well or won’t handle as well as my stomach does. This brings us back to the main problem when talking about fructose malabsorption: Every statement is very vague and based on personal experience. That said you will need to find out the amount of fructose your body can handle without problems. Sad song. Next week I will show you my list of absolute no-go ingredients.
What’s in my fridge now:
- lots of dairy products: mainly all sorts of cheeses, but always a big chunk of feta cheese and some goat milk cream cheese, yogurt and milk, cream and parmesan
- salad: green leafy salads such as lamb’s lettuce, baby spinach and rocket.
- lots of fresh or frozen spinach, cucumber
- in small amounts mushrooms, beet root, broccoli, zucchini, kale, fennel, pumpkin, celery root, depending on what’s in season at the time
- and of course eggs, fresh fish and meat like ground beef or salmon, even though I have to say that I cook very little meat at home myself as we go out for lunch or dinner a lot and usually the only thing I can order contains meat because too many vegetables are risky. So I try to reduce the amount of meat when cooking at home.
What you can find on my counter:
- lots o fresh herbs like basil, parsley, thyme, salve, chili and of course garlic. I love garlic! I will not ban garlic from my diet, ever. I simply cannot. I love it too much and I’m willing to bear a little stomach pain for its amazing taste
- other spices: Turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, cumin, nigella seeds, sumac
- homegrown pepper weed and other seeds. Mostly I grow them myself, because it’s so simple and I’m not willing to pay an enormous amount of money for something so simple and cheap
- lemons, avocados and bananas, and in small amounts and only when they are in season: strawberries, rhubarb, apricots
In my cupboard:
- rice, pasta*, potatoes, rice crisp bread, millet, buckwheat
- lots of herbal tea . potato chips with sea salt only, no additives i.e. onion powder
- coconut milk
- golden flax seeds, psyllium and tiger nut flakes
- in small amounts pumpkin seeds, pine nuts and walnuts
- and of course some chocolate and spreads for the sweet tooth. We are lucky in Germany because there is this company called Werz (link) that produces different kinds of spreads for people who suffer from fructose malabsorption. I love the rice syrup coconut and the rice syrup and tiger nut spread. I also buy a chocolate drink called Ovomaltine. But be careful, only the product that is sold in switzerland is low in fructose.
- Sweetener e.g. for bakin: rice syrup or glucose
So, tell me, what kind of food finds their way onto your plate? Do you have any secret ingredient low in fructose?
*Update: Just recently I found out that wheat and rye should be avoided too when suffering from fructose malabsorption. Read more about this topic here. Since July 2013 I try to pursue a gluten free diet.
Continue reading “I eat you, I eat you not / part 2”