Low-FODMAPs Diet for Kids: Can They Do?

Tempo de Leitura: 2 minutos

In adults, dietary management, particularly with the Low-FODMAPs diet, is an important part of therapy for patients with disorders of bowel-brain interaction, particularly in irritable bowel syndrome. However, there are limited data on safety concerns associated with a restrictive diet in pediatrics, including impacts on nutrition and growth, disordered eating behaviors, psychosocial issues, and the intestinal microbiome. But what about the Low-FODMAPs diet for children: can they do it?

What is the Low-FODMAPs diet?

FODMAPs are dietary short chain carbohydrates delivered to the large intestine due to non-digestibility in the small intestine due to the absence of adequate hydrolases. Its content in specific foods has been methodically mapped and the findings, expressed as low, borderline or rich in fodmaps specific to standard part size, are readily available on monash university’s Fodmap diet app.

The concept behind the FODMAP diet is that, different Fodmaps have additive effects on the gut, reducing the intake of all FODMAPs collectively in the individual will maximize the benefit of a dietary change in symptoms. If such a broad restriction has an adequate symptomatic response, individual FODMAPs are gradually reintroduced to identify specific dietary triggers and doses that are tolerated in the individual. Finally, after reintroduction there is an adapted and personalized diet that is nutritionally adequate and sustainable in the long term.

Low-FODMAPs Diet for Kids: Can They Do?

Although the FODMAP diet is widely used in pediatric practice, there is weak evidence of efficacy. This reflects the facts that expert opinion has a major influence on the application of diet therapies and that high-quality clinical trials evaluating diet therapies are very challenging to design and perform. Despite this relative lack of quality evidence for efficacy, the FODMAP diet is being prescribed globally in children and, therefore, considerations need to be made by health professionals.

Awareness of diet risks and its mitigation by proper assessment and training by qualified expert nutritionists are crucial to ensure optimal outcomes and adaptation to the needs of the child and family. The individualization of the approach adopted is important. In addition, some may not be suitable for fodmap diet, others may require initial correction of nutritional deficiencies with general healthy eating strategies before adopting the FODMAP diet, while others may be better treated using the FODMAP diet to help correct nutritional deficiencies and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.

Clinical practice

Although the concept of “gentle fodmap” has not been rigorously tested, the use of a simpler and less restrictive approach in a pediatric setting is practical and sensible. Since it takes into account the broader needs of the family unit, which should be considered by professionals.


Study suggestion: Can
the reduction of FODMAPs in the mother’s diet improve the cramps in the baby?

Watch the video on Science Play with Marcio Andre:
Low Fodmap Diet

Diet FODMAPs and children
Rhys-Jones D, Varney JE, Muir JG, Gibson PR, Halmos EP. Application of The FODMAP Diet in a Paediatric Setting. Nutrients. 2022; 14(20):4369. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14204369

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