My FructMal Story

I have Fructose Malabsorption Disorder. Check out the other pages of my blog, or my Fructmal website for more info on what this is.

What was my personal journey? How did I discover I had this condition? Have I always had it? How does it affect my day-to-day life? It never occurred to me to bother with my own personal story before, but I have received emails asking about it. I suppose it’s rather weird to have a blog and a website on the subject and no personal account! Therefore, here it is (Be warned! This account talks openly about icky bodily functions! LOL!) :

I was not born with Fructmal. In fact, I grew up in orchard country! My neighbourhood was actually an old orchard that had been subdivided into suburban lots (back in the days when they didn’t cut down all the trees when they did that sort of thing). As a result, everyone had tons of fruit and traded amongst one another for variety. I always enjoyed plenty of apples, plums, peaches, cherries, strawberries, raspberries…. Whether fresh, frozen or preserved, I loved them all and they never bothered me.

My problems started in my mid-teens. Interestingly, this was right after two rather dramatic illnesses which both were treated with multiple antibiotics in high doses taken over extended periods of time. Did these bouts of antibiotic cocktails cause my Fructmal? I’m not a doctor, and I don’t know of any research that has been done on this subject. I will say that I have communicated with many other Fructmals who had no problems until suffering an illness that was treated with high doses of antibiotics. Often multiple antibiotics taken over a long period of time. Perhaps the illnesses were the cause of the Fructmal? Being bedridden or have a beleaguered immune system? At any rate, that was when the trouble started: constant stomach aches, diarrhea, depression, sleep problems… and nothing seemed to help. My parents sought help, but doctors and teachers put the depression down to adolescence and the stomach problems down to teen stress.

My sister always had a lot of allergies. Consequently, shopping by my mother’s side I learned to read food labels as a normal, routine part of grocery shopping. When my sister had an adverse reaction, the first response was to examine what she had been eating. It was therefore logical that over time, I would intuitively connect my painful gastro-intestinal responses to specific foods. By my early twenties I had come to the conclusion that fruit in all it’s forms was the culprit and stopped eating it. No fruit, no fruit juice, jam, nothing. At first, I was occasionally tempted. After several months I would succumb to the siren’s song of strawberry shortcake, or peach preserves; but the inevitable and excruciating cramps, bloating and miscellaneous GI nastiness always reminded why it was a bad idea! It didn’t take long before the sight of fruit was no temptation at all, as I associated it simply with pain.

My family accepted my self-diagnosis. Others, however, were baffled and convinced I must be wrong. Doctors told me it was impossible to be “allergic” to a sugar (this was in the early nineties and lactose-intolerance hadn’t really come to the forefront yet). Friends and co-workers tried to convince me that I was getting an upset stomach from citric acid, but that seemed illogical to me. Tomatoes and vinegar didn’t bother me at all, and citric acid as an ingredient also elicited no response, though fructose as an additive did. I stuck by my conclusion. When I first heard about lactose intolerance, the GI symptoms sounded similar, so I called my self diagnosed ailment fructose intolerance. I felt empowered in giving it a label, I suppose.

I tried searching the internet several times during the nineties for “fructose intolerance”, but there was nothing. This, I should note, was before Google, and I made the rounds of Altavista, Yahoo, Webcrawler, etc. With no other recourse and no medical guidance, I just stuck with what was working: avoiding fruit and fructose. Every few years I would search the web again, speak to another doctor, and go away frustrated.

It was only in 2008 that I finally tried again and hit paydirt! Googling got me a confusing array of referances to Dietary Fructose Intolerance, Hereditary Fructose Intolerance, Fructose Malabsorption, and a baffling range of dietary guidelines. It took me literally days to visit all the seemingly relevant sites and sort them out according to my symptoms and my common sense. That’s when I found the support group I am currently in. This group is great, wonderfully moderated, and specific to my condition – which I found out is called Fructose Malabsorption.

After joining this group and reading the material, I learned about fructans and eliminated foods I had never before connected to my condition: wheat, spelt, kamut, yogurt, onions, etc. By the second week, the depression I had suffered from all my life lifted – I kid you not – like a curtain. My sleep patterns settled themselves, and the inexplicable GI symptoms that I’d often had – despite knowing for a fact I had eaten no fruit – were explained (and remedied). I feel empowered and in control now!

Now that I have been on the full foodplan for several months, I have gotten unexpected relief. I now have no…. and I mean NO… premenstrual symptoms. At all. For the first time in my entire life I have to track my cycle on a calendar. No bad skin, no limp hair, no irritability, no breast tenderness, no cramping, no bloating, NOTHING. When I was a teen, it was very bad, and though things improved in my twenties I never connected it to the fact that I stopped eating fruit in my twenties. Now, however, with my newly expanded dietary guidelines resulting so immediately in a total elimination of all my PMS – I look back and see the connection. I now get one day of mild cramps on the second day – cramps easily taken care of with a Tylenol. Needless to say, my spouse is also happier!

With no site on the internet that I could find that was specific to Fructmal, I started one, and I am experimenting with wheat-free cooking and baking.

There finally seems to be research going on all over the world on fructose, and I feel absolutely thrilled (and just a little vindicated)! I feel certain that the condition will soon be as well-known as lactose intolerance or hypoglycemia.

Well, that’s it! I wish it were more exciting, but there wasn’t so much as a car chase! LOL!! It is a story that is obviously, in progress, and as such I will continue it in my blog…………….

:)

AVT

33 responses to “My FructMal Story

  1. Fructmal Questions

    Thanks for your posts on this! I had a few questions and thought I would post them – you seem to know a lot about the topic – I’m reading what I can find but it doesn’t seem that there is a ton of stuff out there on the topic. I’ve had IBS issues for a long time and have tried numerous regimens but am now giving a low fructose regimen a try. I have IBS-C rather than the diarrhea side which a lot of people have. On the frutmal regimen, what are things that can be used for fiber? It sounds like berries can be an aid as they have overall low fructose but I’d like to keep those to a minimum too. Is flax a problem? It doesn’t have much sugar but I’m not sure if it has “fructan” content. How about alcohol? Sounds like sweet wine/beer are out for use. Are you able to drink any booze? In the past I’ve gone on gluten free, grain free and other diets so compliance is not an issue for me. The issue is just figuring out what is permitted / not-permitted and then testing it out. Thanks again.

  2. Hi! Glad you found me!

    A lot of fructmals take fibre supplements – y’know the fibre drinks etc. I have never had to do that. I do know that if you do, read the ingredients list EVERY TIME you buy it. It seems that the manufacturers like to play musical additives and often a product that was no problem before suddenly has prebiotics in it (BIG no-no) like inulin. Be watchful!

    I eat a lot of raw carrots, as well as ryecrisps (only ingredients are rye and salt!) which make great tuna melts! Rye and oats are generally well tolerated by most fructmals. Just keep in mind most so-called “rye” bread is just wheat bread with some rye added. Ryecrisps are usually in the cracker aisle at the supermarket.

    Personal tolerance varies regarding fructose and fructans, but I cannot even tolerate two berries in a day. At all. I eat NO fruit or fruit products except the occasional 3 to 4 forkfuls of lemon pie filling. Citrus is the most tolerated of all fruits and lemon is number one. It’s probably sour because of how little fructose it has….just surmising here.
    I can usually tolerate a few forkfuls – no crust of course – (and naturally I eat ALL the meringue!! heh-heh).

    Berries? Put a bullet in my head. No kidding. EEEeevil.

    I’d recommend going on a ZERO fructose diet for about a month, then introduce low fructose items one at a time and note your reactions. Remember some people take several days to manifest reactions to some things. If the results seem consistant with fructmal – get a hydrogen/methane breath test to be sure.
    :)
    AVT

    ………can’t answer you regarding the booze from personal experience. I don’t drink – never have. LOL! Accidently had a slice of tirimasu at a restaurant once not realizing it was “spiked”. By halfway through the slice, the room was spinning and I was feeling hot and thought I had food poisoning or something! ROFL!! My sweetie tasted the cake and starting laughing his patootie off! He had to help me walk to the car!
    I am the cheapest drunk ever.

    Most of the other fructmals I talk to (or type to) though say that a little bit is usually okay – nothing too sweet – and make sure your beer has no wheat.

    Stay in touch!

  3. Hello! I suspect you don’t hear from a lot of people on this topic, as they may not ever seek out a solution to what their digestive problem is.

    I’ve just diagnosed myself as a Fructose Malabsorption person. I went online, finally wondering why it is that I cannot drink apple juice without a whole lot of unhappiness, and came away amazed what I learned. FrucMal sure sounds right.

    Just saying hello and thanks for this website. I think I’ll find some good info here. The dietary restrictions will be a challenge, especially wheat (I have a junk-food addicted 12-year-old daughter at home), but I think I must give the diet a fair shot and see if it helps me to feel better.

    Best,
    Lori

  4. I’m very intrigued to see if this may be my problem. Excessive bloating and distension, going wheat and dairy free helps, but doesn’t do it 100%. I went on a 10 day diet and ate only protein and veggies, and my symptoms were very low. When I added fruit, dairy and grains (no gluten) back in, bang it’s all back. I just went to a book signing that was fabulous (not fructose free) but gluten free, here blog is http://www.elanaspantry.com. Great recipes there! ps: is the breath test expensive, and do you recommend having it done? Or should I just experiment with the fructose free diet? thx

    • Hi Sarah!

      I have to say, I myself have not been able to find anywhere to get the breath test done! Ironic, yes? The fructmal diet totally eliminates my problems (even ALL my EXTENSIVE PMS problems too, believe it or not!) and any lapse brings symptoms back so… I am self-diagnosed. If I could find somewhere to have the test done, I would! I always recommend getting the medical experts on board. This can be frustrating and demoralizing, as SO many doctors are not aware/educated about this – but they ARE the ones who are trained to understand how the body’s many systems affect each other and I think finding a doctor who can work with you is always important. Also, having the condition “validated” by a medical test can assist with medical insurance, depending on how things work in your area.

      Ariana

  5. Two helpful websites:

    http://www.coeliac.com.au and http://www.foodintol.com

    Miranda
    Australia

  6. thank you ariana for this awesome blog… i have been searching wildly for the past year to finally determine why and how to get over my almost life long depression, pmdd, 3 bouts of ppd and sad. i’m pretty sure by now it has to be nutritional/vitamin/mineral deficiency since i’ve had some temporary success with all kinds of vitmains, but i’m now thinking i may have this… thus not getting any tryptophan to my brain since it clings to the fructose…only thing is, i had “ibs” in middle school, but then the gastro problems weren’t horrible after that… but the depression has lingered horribly. (i was on antibiotics quite a bit for acne for many years too…ugh.) i do get some diarrhea and gas – esp apples and wheat and lots of milk, but it hasn’t disrupted my life. i’ve been on the fructose and wheat free diet 2 days now and have noticed looking alot less puffy thou :) anyway, just wondered if you’ve heard from others without such bad gi probs, but with depression or pms irritability? also, i was wondering if milk ever gives you similar probs and if u can have garlic…. thankyou!!!! i’ll keep u posted!

    • Definately keep me posted, Stephanie!

      Remember that each person’s forbidden, occassionally, and okay lists are different, so customize! Some fructmals react to corn, to potatoes, to almonds – the trick is sticking to the same food for a long time, then changing one thing and track how you feel for at least three or four days (in case the reaction in delayed).

      Personally, I’ve never had a problem with milk… and I LOVE ice cream! When the Dairy Queen Walk-Up opens in the summer I would be there every day if it weren’t for the sugar! Personally, I can handle garlic and the green parts of green onions and chives, and I can used an onion to flavour soup or stew as long as I don’t eat the onion.

      To do this, I cut the onion into quarters and put it in a cheesecloth bag, tie it shut with pure cotton butcher’s string and put it in the soup or stew. Remove and discard when ready to serve.

      As to GI problems, again everyone seems to be different. I thought mine were quite bad, but I’ve heard from folks who were virtually housebound! Sticking to my diet had greatly relieved my GI problems – what’s important is keeping up my fibre intake. As to mood and PMS, I can now “feel” – emotionally – when I’ve eaten something wrong. My mind tends to dwell on sad things, on the futility of life, if I watch “Criminal Minds” or “The Closer” the atrocities committed by the murderers onscreen roll around and around in my brain making me think about how terrible and unsafe the world is and people untrustworthy and deceitful….. I can step out of myself and see my mood “circling the drain” and then make a point about going for a walk, putting a tape of the original 1970’s “Tomorrow People” or listening to upbeat music.

      Regarding PMS – gone. Seriously gone for me. As long as I stay on my foodplan.

      Hope this was to info you wanted! :)
      Ariana

  7. oh – one more question.. what/if any sweeteners do u use? have u ever tried stevia and has it caused u any gi or depression probs? i have about 40 lbs to loose and am thus trying to avoid plain sugar also… but if artifical stuff keeps me depressed i’ll keep the weight forever and drop that….no prob.

    • Yes, I’ve tried stevia is many different forms. What put me off it was that it has a slight licorice aftertaste. I’ve recently thought about going back to it in spicy chai or something – a flavour that would cover up or blend in with the taste.

      Stevia is not artificial. Stevia is an herb, like oregano or thyme. It has many traditional names like Honeyleaf, Sweetleaf, and the like. Most powdered stevia is bleached white – like sugar is bleached – so it’s pretty for the consumer, and the leaf are processed to reduce the aftertaste. Many seed catalogues offer stevia seeds so you can grow it in your herb garden! In the same way that jalapeno peppers taste hot even though they are room temperature, stevia tastes sweet without actually BEING sugary. The sweetness is a flavour only, like pepper’s hotness, and doesn’t have any sugar (except that which can be metabolised by the plant itself for it’s own use.).

      WATCH OUT with stevia though! Stevia is bazillions of times more sweet than sugar, so you only need a TINY amount – like the size of a quarter of a pea – to sweeten your coffee. Some brands include a tiny, tiny spoon, BUT some brands address this issue by bulking up the stevia with a filler ingredient. This way a spoon of “stevia” (actually bulked up stevia) equals a spoon of sugar, because the spoon is actually a teenie-weenie bit of stevia mixed into a spoon of bulking agent.

      This is the thing: the bulking agent is almost always CHICKORY which we CANNOT HAVE. Chickory goes by other name including FOS or fructo-oligo-saccharide, and inulin.
      If your stevia has these in it, AVOID!! This is super-prebiotic!! This will give extreme symptoms in almost ALL fructmals! Only use stevia that ONLY contains stevia and nothing else. If you can use a regular sized spoon, or you use a sugar-packet sized packet, then it’s been bulked up with something.
      :)
      Ariana

  8. Thanks you.

    You are a goddess. :-) I am newley diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorbtion, and been bust checking the web for information, found your blog, and am now a happy man.

    Think I’ll also join that support group on Yahoo.

    I don’t think my malabsorbtion is a bad one, but That I have been pushed over the edge of what I can absorb by other good intentions.

    Last year I had a case of diverticulitis, that ended up giving me a minor perforation in my sigmoid colon. And let me tell you, it’s even less fun than it sounds! A week in hospital on IV anti-biotics.

    Anyway, was told that for diverticular disease to increase my fibre intake. But ever since, had plenty of tummy rumbles, pains, bloating, etc. and heaps of misery with it all.

    I was told apples are good for fibre. Other fruits too. And I found myself a new breakfast ceral that is really high fibre, one bowl in the mornings was 1/2 what I need for the whole day… it’s got wheat, apple, rasins…. get the picture??

    So, I think my well intentioned increase in my fibre has given me an unwelcome increase in my fructose intake… enough to push me over whatever level I can tolerate happily.

    Anyway, thanks for all the info you have provided… I’ll be going over it with a fine tooth comb over the next little while. Great stuff.

    Ohh…. but your sense of humour, it’s woeful, terrible… and I should know… it seems exactly like mine! :-)

    Geoff.
    Melbourne, Australia

  9. Sorry if it’s been mentioned already, but I have been doing some research into fructose malasorption, and came across an interesting fact.

    I found a published article that showed people with breath-test diagnosed fructose malasorption had lower blood levels of tryptophan, the precursor to serotonin. In the references to that article was a paper about low levels of tryptophan aggrevating PMS in a clinical trial. So it’s a simple link from fructose malabsorption = low tryptophan = worse PMS. How fascinating! If you’re interested the article is “Fructose malabsorption is associated with decreased plasma tryptophan”.

    Also, great site, it’s so nice to get a personal perspective rather than the dry info, and you present that well too!

  10. Hi,
    I just discovered your website, great!
    I am thinking that maybe I have Fructmal. Obviously, why else would I write to you??

    I get it that it is necessary to avoid fructose in order to heal and starve the piranhas… LOL
    Fruit seems to be straight forward, although I love it!!
    But what can one eat during that time? no veggies at all? 4-6 weeks without is a long time!
    Veggies are the puzzle to me,
    I read various charts and they are contradictory, safe here , unsafe there. But that chart would be helpful after those weeks of nothing, right?

    Yesterday I had sweet potatoes and butternut squash, on one chart it said they were both low fructose veggies, and I had a terrible night, look all puffy this morning
    I live pretty rural and don’t know a doctor who would know.

    Elke

  11. Thanks so much for keeping a blog on this. I was diagonsed about a year ago and it has been the most frustrating year. I’ve cut out so much that my immune system off, I’ve lost 0ver 30 pounds and everytime I try to re introduce things, I get sick. I am excited to learn more and take a better approach so that my health doesn’t suffer. I’m happy that I found out what it was I had because I have been able to live a much better life without the stomach aches every day, but worry that I am not taking the right steps in staying healthy and eating right. I get nervous re introducing foods cause of the pain I feel. Thanks so much for this! I have a lot to learn!

  12. Thank you for sharing your story and the information on the disorder. I’ve recently been hit with another wave of horrid symptoms and finally have found the cause. I’ve been suffering with this since I was born. I thought it was gluten so i stopped eating gluten and things got a lot better .. but some symptoms persisted .. so i dug deeper .. i don’t know why i searched for sugar intolerance but i just did. Crazy times.

  13. i was wondering about stevia also. my stevia only lists maltodextrin as an added ingredient. would it be ok?

  14. also, i am really enjoying your blog! i was recently diagnosed but have been having the symptoms since i was 3. my now 3 yo daughter has the symptoms too and i am taking her for the breath test soon.

  15. Ariana, my daughter is 11 years old and has suffered with GI problems for 2 years now. We have had endoscopes, colonoscopies, blood work, stool sample testing, celliac testing all done. The GI doctor keeps saying he thinks it is celliac even though the biopsies come back negative. She has been on a gluten free diet for 3 months and is still having bouts of diarrhea. The unusual thing with her is she always has the diarrhea in the morning (sometimes 3-4 times) but then can have a normal bowel movement later in the day. Have you ever heard of this pattern? The other night she had fruit and some chocolate later at night 8:00 p.m and this set her off for 4 straight days of diarrhea in the mornings. She is currently on a steroid to try to calm down her small intestine which is inflammed with some increase in lymphocites. (Thus why they think she has celliac) However, the fact that she is gluten free and still having these terrible episodes of diarrhea make me think the culprit is not just gluten. I have such a hard time knowing what to feed her. I was doing a lot of brown rice and now I am second guessing that with the possible fructose intollerance. What about the gluten free breads made with brown rice and bown rice syrup are those a no, no? Is there any gluten free bread you can eat? She also has developed a bad case of burping a lot and having reflux – is that associated with fructose intollerance? Thanks for you input I am a desperate mom who wants her daughter to get some relief.

    • Hey, My daughter has been diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption Disorder (FMD) & Lactose Intolerance, among other things. Its sounds like your daughter has ALL the same symptoms. Gluten is a fructan so it must also be deleted from the diet of people with FMD along with all fructose. It is a very difficult & frustrating disorder but knowing that you are not alone is helpful. Check out the FODMAP diet or any fructose malabsorption site to read up on what she should STOP eating. This should help some.

  16. Hi there! I just found your blog and it has REALLY been helpful to me. In fact I found it today when I was just about at my wits end!

    My daughter has been sick with “GI type” symptoms for the past 9 months. She started out with vomiting and stomach flu symptoms. The vomiting stopped after about 10 days. But she has had stomach pains, sometimes severe, nausea, headaches and severe fatigue. We have taken her to several doctors and had numerous tests run. Everything was negative until a few weeks ago. She had breath tests for Lactose and Fructose Intolerance. (I know that you are calling it “Fructose Malabsorption” instead of Fructose Intolerance, but the test that they did on my daughter was called a Fructose Intolerance test. I agree with you about it being called malabsorption, though). Anyway, her lactose test was negative, but her fructose test came out positive. I was quite surprised since EVERYTHING else has been negative and she is in so much pain and suffering so much.

    We homeschool, but she participates in many church activities and some homeschool classes in our area. She has been so sick since last June that she has been virtually home bound. So when this test was positive we were excited to FINALLY have something to work with. We were given a Fructose Restriction diet and told to follow it for two weeks. Then after symptoms subsided we could add things back, one at a time, every 4 days to see if she reacted to the food. The problem is that she really has not gotten any better. I was at my wits end this morning and started searching the web and found your blog.

    I am frustrated because the diet that we were given INCLUDES wheat products. We were told that brown rice was okay to give her. We were told that we needed to restrict ALL vegetables, except for a few, for two weeks. And NO beans. Our problem is that we are vegetarians, so taking beans away from us is just wrong!!! So we have been following the diet we were given, and her symptoms don’t seem much better. And after reading your blog I am thinking that she may still be sick because we have not eliminated the fructans. So we started that today. We will see if that works.

    Also, I am wondering if you have heard about the dextrose trick? We were told that after the elimination time if my daughter wants to eat a small amount of fruit, or if she is eating out and can’t know every ingredient, that she can just add some dextrose to the food and the dextrose will help transport the fructose across the intestinal wall. You said that you can’t tolerate even “2 berries a day”. Have you ever tried the dextrose trick? We are just wondering if it really works. We are not there yet!

    Sorry this is so lengthy. I am just trying to learn what to do to help my daughter feel better. She wants get on with her life.

  17. Hello, my name is M, and i’m a fructmal. ;)
    I say this with only a little humor, because I’m a serious sugar addict who could live on fruit, salads, and ice cream, and chocolate all summer long.

    AVT, I can’t thank you enough for this site. I thought I was losing my MIND. My dietitian did not GET this (but she is open to it), my Gastro, did not GET this at all and is telling me to eat lots of fiber and whole grains (UGH, NO), though she agrees with my diagnosis (small victories, right?).

    I’ve been experimenting with this for about a year and before I found a name and told the docs, I knew that for me, ANY carb – potatoes, white rice, any treats, or heaven forbid FRUIT, would send me into a tailspin.

    I have to admit it’s been frustrating and painful. I want to tell anyone else who is searching (though you’ve done a great job) that this issue can cause depression, PMS, constipation and/or diarrhea, mental distraction, EXHAUSTION, bloating, puffiness, headaches…and more.

    Docs tried to put me o anti-depressants. I can’t stress enough that we know our own bodies. Perhaps an anti-depressant wouldn’t have hurt, but I wanted to find the CAUSE. I’m a very positive person and kept pushing. Once my Vitamin D levels became ok, and when I do not have sugars, i’m the happiest person around. I promise.
    m
    PS-keep linking and posting! I found this book on AMAZON and it should be at my house in a few days.

    “Fructose Malabsorption: The Survival Guide”
    Debra Ledford; Paperback; $13.31

    Don’t give up! Help each other, and lets keep learning about this together!

  18. Hi, so glad that I found this site. I have recently been diagnosed with a fructose and lactose intolerance. Yay me. Anyways I am always incredibly achy, tired,and have the worst brain fog ever. Could these symptoms be related to the intolerances. My doctor is kind of an ass and told me that a food intolerance would not cause me to be extremely tired and that it was probably in my head. ;( Did you experience any of the same symptoms???

  19. I was diagnosed with Frutose Malabsorption this past March 2011. I have had IBS-D and Acid Reflux (GERD) for years. Since being diagnosed by the Mayo Clinic and changing my diet, I have seen some dramatic improvements in my health. I still continue to test foods and will sometimes have setbacks if one of the foods that I am testing does not sit well with my stomach. I have been using Brown Rice Syrup as a sweetner because it seems to be composed of mostly of glucose and it seems to work for me. I tried dextrose sugar but it caused me to have stomach pains.

  20. Hello,

    This is great. Finally something makes sense. I had a quick question. 3 days ago I cut out fructose and wheat. Within hours I was feeling better. Everyone needs carbohydrates, so I decided upon white rice and corn. At the end of the first day I had some corn with a small amount of coconut milk and I felt worse. However, I quit the coconut milk and the symptoms went away in two hours. The next day and the day after I ate significant amounts of unsweetened corn(never fresh sweet corn, I’m talking about grits and tortollas) and have been eating dextrose(corn sugar). Slowly but surely all my symptoms are back and I’m now questioning if I have anything to do with fructose malabsorption at all. I’m fairly sure I’ve been eating nothing else else that could cause problems. All I’ve had is meat, rice, celery, corn, and some peanuts. Anybody have terrible reactions to corn or peanuts. Let me finish by saying this is not an allergy. No hives or nothing, just the usual irritability, depression, cold hands, constipation that I’ve had for a long and that seemed to be going away when I started this. Thank you.

    • Hey, My daughter nutritionists is the greatest in NY probably in the USA… he says absolutely NO CORN products what so ever… try not having any corn products, it should help.

  21. Felisse Leake

    I have enjoyed reading here. I recently stumbled onto FM on Wikipedia and have all the classic issues; massive antibiotics over long periods for chronic sinus infections; am allergic to all plants and animals. My symptoms which I’ve had for years recently came to a head when I started making breakfast fruit shakes (to increase fiber I thought I needed) and eating Lara Bars for emergency food. OMG!!! Pain!!! Anyway, I use the Stevia drops that have only stevia in purified water; costs $15.00 for two ounces; by Sweetleaf at my local health food store. It’s better in tea than coffee. I was wondering is regular sugar off limits if I’ve given up the fruit and wheat and onions, etc? Am I to avoid all sugar or just the corn syrup and the HF cornsyrup and honey? Is molasses allowed?

  22. Hello, I’ve just been diagnosed as Fructose Intolerance by taking the Hydrogen Breath Test. My symptoms are LOUD gurgling intestines, excessive gas, mood swings, and anxiety. Also, have hyperthyroidism. Anyway, I went to the Whole Foods store to find something that I could eat. I purchased Gluten Free Rice Thin Crackers and within 15 minutes, I was in pain and had diarrhea. Here are the ingredients to what I ate: Rice, Expeller-Pressed High Oleic safflower oil, Whey, Cheddar Cheese Powder, Salt, Sugar, Citric And Lactic acids, disodium phosphate, expeller-pressed olive oil, natural flavor. Whatever is in these products cause a major reaction. The reaction was more extreme than eating fruit! Please advise.

    • Hey, Whey is a fructan & therefore should not be eaten. You may also have a problem with Lactose as most do… so maybe you should take the Hydrogen Breath Test for Lactose. If you have Lactose Intolerance then Cheddar Cheese Powder would be a problem.

  23. Thank you for this blog! I was diagnosed with a bacterial overgrowth last year (after taking the hydrogen breath test – tested positive) and was treated with 2 courses of an antibiotic called Xifaxan. It took almost 6 months to get diagnosed and properly treated – the whole time I suffered from nausea almost all day (every day), severe vomiting (4-10 times a day), extreme bloating, extremely painful gas, etc. The gastroenterologist (sp?) also recommended that I visit a dietician. He did not tell me that I had fructose malabosorbtion however. He simply said that it “might” help me. After going the rounds with insurance however I didn’t end up seeing a dietician as they made it so difficult.
    After the treatments I was down to vomiting about 3-4 times a week, nausea maybe a couple times a day, some pain/bloating/gas/etc. But compared to the previous levels where I was at I could manage it. Plus the doctor told me that it was naturally occuring bacteria that was the culprit and that I would never be free of symptoms so I just dealt with it the best I could.
    Fast forward 5 months and I start to get extremely sick again. This time I see the physicians assistant – which actually turned out to be a good thing! She had the time to spend with me to explain what was happening and why I needed to follow the FODMAP diet. I was floored. Not once had it been explained to me that the food I was eating was the cause! They gave me some basic information and another prescription for Xifaxan. It has been 10 days and I am improving – slowly. It’s really hard since there is so much conflicting information out there. As much as I love fruit, onions, garlic, and bread – I have given them up without a single regret. This has been the worst experience of my life – and I say that having spent 3 1/2 years on dialysis and having a kidney transplant.
    I do wonder however how all of this is connected. I too was put on a cocktail of antibiotics when I was a teen for an extended period. Doctors have now figured out that this causes kidney damage (duh!) and know that constant strep throat infections also lead to kidney damage. But I wonder about the link between the kidney transplant and the stomach condition. I have developed multiple stomach problems since having the transplant 12 years ago – Gastroparesis, GERD/acid reflux (measurable to my collar bone), hiatal hernia, and IBS (although I think the fructmal is the real culprit). I did not have any stomach problems/fructmal issues before the transplant. I also have a friend who’s daughter has a kidney transplant who has developed Gastroparesis.

  24. Oh please help!!! for about 3 and a half years now i have suffered from tummy pains, bloating, gas, pulsating headaches and fatigue, I have been on elimination diets for years and although they get me better they never take my symptons all away. I have been reading about frustocse malabsorption and i think this may be my answer. Foods i know affect me or make symptons worsen….. marshmellows, maple syrup, honey, bananas, pears, pears in syrup, fruit juice… lots more but cant think. I am in the process of doing those breath teststo see if fructose malabsorption is confirmed…. im so over being sick!!!! can ya weight gain?? or do u usually loose weight?do you think this sounds right?

  25. OK so I asked my Gastro Dr. about the hydrogen breath test. He said he would test me but FIRST he wanted me to do the similar test for bacterial infection of the small intestine. (Lactose Breath Test). It was positive. Two days later I did the Fructmal test and it too was positive. The Gastro Dr said he thought it was a false positive. I’ve been on the diet recommended from the book “Breaking the Viciious Cycle” by Elaine Gottschall. Its helping but I’ve decided I still have issues with Fructmal. So….I’m going to try to abide by both diets to see if there’s improvement. With the diet my Dr. gave me I restrict all grains and all sugars except Honey. I’ve been baking with the honey and I’m thinking that’s the problem. I will keep you all informed.

  26. Felisse – It’s not uncommon for you to have multiple malabsorbtions and SIBO. Inflammation (long story) does not allow our enzymes to get to the food it needs to digest…there are other reasons for malabsorbtions, but that’s a start.

    If you have FM, Honey is high in fructose…Apples are a good indicator too, as are tomatoes…I belive. so it would go to reason that you have FM.

    There’s an ANDROID APP that is called FODMAP. It’s VERY simple and is mostly correct. It will help you with common food choices that usually upset our ‘tummies’

    Good luck.
    ~mcoffeesnob

  27. PS-once your system heals *it takes a long time* you will probably be able to eat the foods you malabsorbed previously. It gets better, I promise, but you have to HEAL. That means the right diet and supplements for a long time.

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