1 Comment

Low-FODMAP products I can’t live without!

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored in any way, shape, or form by any company to endorse their products. I simply thought it would be helpful for my fellow FODMAPers to share a list of low-FODMAP products I personally enjoy.

Udi’s Gluten Free White Sandwich Bread

I decided to start off this list with something that everyone needs: a good, reliable brand of sandwich bread. When I went on the FODMAP diet, one of my biggest concerns was that I would have to completely overhaul the foods I ate on a day-to-day basis, but I found that all I had to do was find different versions of products I previously enjoyed. This bread from Udi’s is by far my favorite gluten-free bread because it’s soft, chewy, and *gasp* tastes like actual bread!

Rao’s Sensitive Marinara Sauce

One of the toughest parts of a low-FODMAP diet is giving up onion and garlic. Before going on the diet, I never realized how much food had onion and garlic in it! Almost every brand of tomato sauce has onion and/or garlic in it, but since the people at Rao’s are angels, they began making this marinara sauce that is free of both onion and garlic and still manages to be delicious! This sauce is so good that even the members of my family who do not follow a low-FODMAP diet enjoy it.

Jovial Gluten Free Penne Pasta

Finding a good low-FODMAP brand of pasta was a task that took some trial and error, but I knew my pasta quest was over as soon as I tasted Jovial’s gluten-free take on penne. Nobody believes me when I say this, but this pasta is just as tasty as regular pasta. My dad, who loves pasta, even admits this stuff is pretty good!

So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt (my favorite flavors are strawberry, blueberry, and raspberry)

The FODMAP diet isn’t technically a dairy-free diet, but avoiding dairy is a smart move for IBS sufferers nonetheless. I will admit that at first, I was skeptical about coconut milk products. I hate the taste of plain coconut products (like coconut shreds); they taste like lotion to me. However, flavored coconut milk yogurt is not bad. It does not taste like coconut very much at all, and it has a smooth, creamy texture reminiscent of dairy yogurt.

So Delicious Vanilla Ice Cream Bars

After trying this brand’s coconut milk yogurt, I figured I would give their coconut milk ice cream a try, and once again, So Delicious did not disappoint. This refreshing dairy-free take on an ice-cream truck classic is the perfect cool treat for a hot summer day.

Udi’s Blueberry Oat Muffin Tops

These delightful treats honestly taste more like soft cookies than muffin tops. I eat these almost every day for breakfast. Time and time again, Udi’s has proven to be the master of making gluten-free products that don’t taste like they’re gluten-free.

Annie’s Gluten Free Double Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

As a student with a busy life, grab-and-go snacks like these granola bars are a vital part of my diet. When I’m in a hurry in the morning, I can just snag one of these and eat it on the way to school for a boost of energy to start my day.

Advertisements


Leave a comment

My journey on the FODMAP diet, part 1

One thing that you readers may not know about me is that I have suffered from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for much of my life, and it’s just about as much fun as it sounds. I have been on several medicines to try to help ease my symptoms, but they were not doing much. One day, my gastroenterologist told me about this diet called the FODMAP diet. The gist of it is that there are several sugars and starches, called FODMAPs (Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, And Polyols) that ferment in the gut and cause IBS symptoms, like diarrhea, constipation, bloating, and gassiness, and avoiding those molecules will minimize negative symptoms. Sounds simple, right? It is, until you account for the fact that so many common foods have FODMAPs in them, including (but definitely not limited to) wheat, milk, onion, garlic, beans, legumes, and many different fruit juices that are used as sweeteners. Regular table sugar and cane sugar are fine, though, because both of those sugars are composed mainly of glucose, which does not cause gut problems when there is more of it than there is fructose in a food.

A major complicating factor in my FODMAP journey is that I have several food allergies: peanuts, tree nuts (not including coconut), sesame, lentils/legumes, and seafood. I also have oral allergy syndrome (OAS), a condition that makes it so that whenever I eat a raw fruit or vegetable (with the exception of blueberries or lettuce), my tongue, mouth, and throat get itchy. OAS has made it hard for me to eat healthily for my whole life, even before I was diagnosed with IBS because fresh fruits and veggies are the cornerstones of a balanced diet. Cooking fruits or veggies can change the proteins of the produce enough so that they do not cause an OAS reaction, but not all cooked fruits or vegetables taste great and cooking fruits and vegetables is a time-consuming process. Interestingly enough, I have not always had OAS, so when I was younger, I loved eating baby carrots, clementines, and cucumbers, and I would totally still snack on those fresh fruits and veggies if they didn’t make my mouth and throat feel super itchy and uncomfortable. When I found out I would probably have to avoid wheat, dairy, onions, garlic, and so many other foods I used to eat, my whole world came crashing down around me, so I put it off for as long as possible.

TO BE CONTINUED…


2 Comments

My favorite songs from season 1 of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”

At the moment, one of my absolute favorite TV shows is Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, a musical comedy series on The CW. After finishing Jane the Virgin (an absolute treasure of a show that is required viewing for anyone with a soul), my mom and I struggled to find another show to binge until we settled upon this hilarious satire. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is about Rebecca Bunch, a Harvard and Yale grad and lawyer at a prestigious firm in New York City who, despite her success, is incredibly unhappy. One day, she runs into her ex-boyfriend from summer camp, Josh Chan, and decides to relocate to his sleepy hometown of West Covina, California. From there, many hijinks ensue. All of the characters on this show are delightfully wacky, and the music on the show is awesome, but a few songs from the first season stand out in my memory. Here are my top 5 favorite songs from season 1 of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.

 

  1. JAP Battle

Description: I know what you all are thinking: why would Maisie, who calls herself an intersectional feminist, use such a disgustingly racist slur on her blog? Aside from that meaning, JAP is also an acronym that stands for “Jewish American Princess.” And yes, I know that that meaning of the word is also an offensive term that stereotypes Jewish girls as rich and spoiled. However, I myself am Jewish and so is Rachel Bloom, the actress who plays Rebecca Bunch on the show and one of the show’s co-creators and writers. In writing this song, Bloom has reclaimed this term to craft a hilarious rap battle between Rebecca and her childhood nemesis, Audra Levine.

Favorite line from the song: “Sheket bevaka-shut the f*** up!” (“Sheket bevakasha” means “please be quiet” in Hebrew and is a phrase commonly used to get rowdy children to calm down during Hebrew School or at a Jewish summer camp)

 

  1. Heavy Boobs

Description: As many people with, erm, a large chest will tell you, this song is one of the most relatable songs of all time. It perfectly captures what life is like for people who were not blessed with the ability to wear spaghetti-strap dresses without being arrested for indecent exposure.

Favorite line from the song: Not b******’ ’bout my boobies, they look super fly in shirts/But if I swung them in your face, you’d be like/‘Oh my God, that hurts!’”

 

  1. The Sexy Getting-Ready Song

Description: A behind-the-scenes look at what really happens when women get ready for parties.

Favorite line from the song: “This is some—this horrifying, like some scary movie or somethin’, like some nasty ass, patriarchal bulls***. You know what? I got to go apologize to some b******. I’m forever changed after what I just seen.” (Spoken by the male rapper featured on the track when he walks in on Rebecca getting ready and what he sees is, well, not sexy.)

 

  1. Gettin’ Bi

Description: When Rebecca’s boss, Darryl, comes out as bi to his employees, he does it in the form of an 80’s rock song. Just watch the video, you’ll see why it’s hysterical.

Favorite line from the song: “It doesn’t take an intellectual to know that I’m bisexual.”

 

  1. Where’s The Bathroom?

Description: Rebecca’s overbearing Jewish mother visits her daughter in West Covina, only to be entirely dissatisfied with what she finds. I am halfway through season 2 of the show and this song remains my all-time favorite from the series.

Favorite line from the song: “A bishop in Wisconsin said something anti-Semitic so the temple has decided to boycott cheddar cheese.”