Given the prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and the suboptimal response to most therapeutic approaches, there has been increasing interest in and adoption of dietary treatment strategies, such as the low Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, & Mono-Saccharides and Polyols (FODMAP) diet. FODMAPs are a diverse group of carbohydrates that exert effects in the gastrointestinal tract not only via fermentation but likely via alterations in the microbiota, metabolome, permeability, and intestinal immunity as well. Clinical evidence for efficacy of this diet is mounting, but there are significant questions regarding short- and long-term safety and effects on the microbiota and nutrition that remain unanswered. This review article interprets the recent findings reported in this issue of Neurogastroenterology and Motility and summarizes the mechanistic and clinical efficacy data of the low FODMAP diet in IBS patients to date.
Keywords: diet; fermentation; irritable bowel syndrome; microbiota.
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.