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Top tips for eating out with IBS

Kelsey’s top tips for eating out with ibs.


Eating out can be a daunting task when you have IBS and other dietary restrictions! I understand first hand what a challenge this can be. So, I’m here to share with you my top tips as someone who has both coeliac disease and has IBS. These tips will help you to relax during your dining out experiences and even enjoy them! 

Identify your main trigger foods

Firstly, identify what your main trigger foods. To do this, we recommend working with a dietitian to help you challenge individual FODMAPs. I know, my main FODMAP containing trigger foods are onion, mushrooms, avocado and cauliflower. If I eat these foods, I will most likely end up feeling pretty rubbish the next morning. So, I do my best to avoid them. It can be this simple for you too. If you’d like to contact a dietitian about identifying your trigger foods, you can contact us here

Do your research

When you are choosing somewhere to go, give the restaurant a ring and ask if they can cater to your food requirements. Not only does this give you peace of mind, it also gives the restaurant some time to prepare an alternative meal option for you prior to your booking.

On that note, if you are booking, add your dietary requirements to the booking, hospo staff love this! 

Reduce FODMAP Stacking

Prior to eating out, I usually try to stick to lower FODMAP foods throughout the day. This reduces my overall FODMAP load and reduces the likelihood of having an IBS flare up if the meal contains FODMAPs. This concept is also known as FODMAP stacking

Avoid over eating

As tempting as it is when eating out, try to listen to your fullness cues. Overeating can contribute to IBS symptoms, and an easy one to avoid. So, if you feel that you’re reaching your capacity, don’t push on just to finish your plate. You can always request a doggy bag to take the rest home with you.

Keep Calm

If you do find that you have a meal higher in FODMAP’s, the best thing to do is keep calm and carry on. These things happen, and this is when we have other tools to go into recovery mode. Sip on peppermint tea, look at supplements such as mintex, any prescription medications you may have, heat packs and lots of water. 

Published: 22nd May 2023

Author: Kelsey Paterson Monash FODMAP trained Dietitian

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