The Ultimate Low FODMAP Christmas Survival Guide!

The Ultimate Low FODMAP Christmas Survival Guide!

Written by Lisa Kunstler, FodShop Nutritionist and Group Fitness Instructor

How to Survive Christmas with IBS

Christmas can be a stressful time of year, with family and friends organising lunches and dinners filled with delicious (and often high FODMAP) foods.

If you aren't preparing your own food, how can you make sure you'll have a happy and care-free holiday?

Below are some tips to get you through the festive season!

How to Fight the Anxiety and Some Tips for Eating Out

Anxiety plays a huge role in IBS, especially if we feel anxious to go to Christmas lunch and be unable to eat anything. We don't want to feel rude or like we're missing out. Here are some tips we can use to feel more comfortable at Christmas.

1. Can you bring your own food? 

Sometimes, our family and friends are super busy preparing that they actually wouldn't mind if you offered to bring a dish. You could try making a low FODMAP salad or charcuterie board that would be delicious for everyone to share and safe for your tummy!

2. Avoid FODMAP stacking throughout the day. 

Try to eat low FODMAP meals during the day so that, if you do accidentally eat FODMAPs at Christmas dinner, the flare ups should be less intense. For more information on FODMAP stacking, check out the webinar recording by FodShop and the Diet vs Disease team.

3. Keep up your daily fibre intake.

Keeping up your fibre intake during the day will help regulate stools (preventing constipation and diarrhoea) and decrease abdominal pain. (1) If you struggle to get fibre in throughout the day, a great option can be a daily fibre supplement, such as SunFiber or Regular Girl. A meta-analysis of 14 randomised control trials including over 900 IBS patients found fibre supplements to effectively improve IBS symptoms. (1)

4. Communication.

Never feel ashamed to politely decline. Many people have gastrointestinal issues or allergies that make eating hard for them and it is widely accepted in this day and age. 

5. Take a supplement!

When all else fails, bring along your favourite enzymatic supplement! Supplements we recommend to patients with IBS include Intoleran and FODZYME. Both are designed to break down complex FODMAPs like fructan, galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS) and lactose into more digestible, simple sugars to make eating stress free!

Eating Easy this Christmas!

Christmas is a time to rejoice and celebrate with those we love most. It can be stress-free when it comes to food and we can still enjoy these kinds of food-focused social settings. Follow these tips and tricks, and you'll breeze through the holidays. Merry Christmas!


1. El-Salhy M, Ystad SO, Mazzawi T, Gundersen D. Dietary fiber in irritable bowel syndrome (Review). Int J Mol Med. 2017 Sep;40(3):607-613. doi: 10.3892/ijmm.2017.3072. Epub 2017 Jul 19. PMID: 28731144; PMCID: PMC5548066.



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