Reply To: 42 yo F unresolved digestive issues on a FODMAP diet

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Welcome! Forums 42 yo F unresolved digestive issues on a FODMAP diet Reply To: 42 yo F unresolved digestive issues on a FODMAP diet

Antony Haynes

Hello Paula

Many thanks for posting this case and providing the detail of the case. Well done on what you have recommended for this woman thus far, and it is noted that she does not follow your instructions completely. It is not likely at all that there is some resistance to the ADP Oregano. It is not possible for the yeast to become resistant to this oregano extract.

To my mind, if SIBO had been the only issue then the low FODMAPs diet and the supplements you describe would have resolved this woman’s symptoms. As I know you are aware, the low FODMAPs diet is not intended for longer term use than 8 weeks, and as you point out this is likely to lead to insufficiency of commensal bacteria as was identified in the CDSA. There was also low SIgA which may or may not have been due to having followed the low FODMAPs diet.

A key comment and observation is that whenever a food is reintroduced it elicits gut symptoms, in particular diarrhoea. It does not appear likely that the symptoms are caused by the presence of Citrobacter freundii nor Dientamoeba fragilis, although they may be having some contribution to her overall state of gut health. Rather, it appears to me that there is a situation of maldigestion going on here. With the inability to digest food, it can lead to diarrhea and effectively to food intolerance, as in lactose intolerance, which leads to diarrhoea. In this way, a low FODMAPs diet does not challenge the compromised digestive function and symptoms abate but when she introduces a food which she cannot digest, lo and behold there is a predictable state of loose stools.

I have found a significant minority of patients with formally diagnosed SIBO who do not respond to the anti-microbial programme in the sense that whilst the anti-microbials may reduce the symptoms at the time of taking them alongside a low FODMAPs diet, the symptoms return as soon as a wider diet is consumed. This leads to reverting to the low FODMAPs diet which in itself can readily compromise the gut bacteria, short chain fatty acid production, and possibly SIgA as well. My intention is to write up some of these cases in detail and share with Nutri-Link practitioners in our eNewsletter.

It is the inability to digest food properly that is at the core of the matter. This may involve lack of pancreatic enzymes and poor bile function or bile flow or bile production. There may be a need for gut lining support too. I have found that the use of probiotics is not appropriate. The route to resolution is the taking of digestive enzymes and bile support, and sometimes HCl acid supplements. However, herbal bitters may be useful too. Some patients fare well on longer-term anti-microbials alongside the digestive support. In my experience, I have found that some digestive enzymes are more effective than others, but it can take trial and error; it is not simply a case of using any old digestive enzyme and seeing what happens. I make suggestions below and give the specific names of the specific products that I find effective.

The underling causes may be linked to stress, to answer your question about that. Sympathetic dominance switches off digestive juices and in the long term this can lead to digestive disorders as you describe in this case. Not everyone is affected in the same way, of course, by stress or being perpetually in the fight and flight mode, but this can certainly be involved in unmasking such dispositions. Simply de-stressing or making a sudden shift to being more calm and mindful and in the here and now is not going to resolve what is often a chronic digestive insufficiency.

The taking of digestive enzymes and bile most certainly does NOT switch off the body’s own production of these invaluable digestive juices. On the contrary, they help the body to make more of their own. Taking enzymes and bile, after the start of a meal, can be the single most important means by which to correct the digestive symptoms you describe.

You need to be aware that a return to a wider diet can be a slow process. In addition to correcting a long term digestive insufficiency, which may not show up in the markers in the CDSA, there may have developed food sensitivities (IgG mediated reactions), which further complicates things. However, the symptoms that are based on maldigestion should be distinct and rapid and predictable, in the early days.

A habit of relaxing before eating and engaging the parasympathetic system is vital. Chewing food thoroughly is a must.

The use of probiotics needs to wait and sometimes I do not ever have patients take a probiotic supplement but rather aim to support their microbiota with foods.

In this particular case, there may be a need to address those unwelcome guests of Citrobacter freundii and Dientamoeba fragilis, if they have not been successful addressed already, but this does not strike me as being significant to her symptoms as you describe them.

Lastly, I would say that it is not readily possible to determine which client / patient is gong to be in need of this digestive support programme when they have a positive SIBO result. In my experience, it has become apparent over time when the low FODMAPs diet and the anti-microbials simply don’t resolve matters.

I have yet to read or find any meaningful research papers or studies on this, the chronically suffering patient who had or has SIBO.


The following supplements are suggested for you to consider in light of your relevant expertise and intimate understanding of the needs of your client or patient. They may be used in isolation or as part of a multi supplement strategy, but at all times the consideration of their use should be tied into the specific needs of the individual you are responsible for.

Digestive enzymes

Pancreas (pork) (ARG) – 1-2 with each meal


Full Spectrum Digest (ARG) (veg) – 1-2 with each meal


Bio-6-Plus (BRC) (porcine) – 1-2 with each meal –

Bile support

Beta Plus (BRC) – 1 with breakfast, 2 with lunch & dinner –


Ox Bile (ARG) – 1 with breakfast, 1 with lunch & dinner –

Consider this fat emulsifier

Phosphatidylcholine (BRC) – 1-2 with each meal –

Herbal Bitters tincture (available from health food store) – 20-15 mins before each meal

Some patients benefit from gut lining support

IPS Caps (BRC) – 2 at start of each meal –

Please consider these suggestions in light of the other clinical information pertaining to this individual.  If you have any more information about the specific problems this individual is experiencing, further refinement of these suggestions may be considered.  I hope this information is helpful, and if you have any further questions or information specific to the problems this individual is experiencing, please do provide feedback.

I hope this helps your client.