When you have IBS or suffer with your digestive system, it can sometimes feel hard to “have a life”. There’s no point in lying, it follows you everywhere and gets you down. It makes you feel like you can’t relax and enjoy eating or drinking anymore and it becomes easier to say “no” to those after work drinks or lunch with friends, to save the hassle and embarrassment of being a “fussy eater” or needing a trip to the loo.
But I’m here to tell you (and am proof that) you can have a life! You can still go out for drinks and have cocktails…just in moderation and you might have to adjust your choices slightly to keep in line with your low FODMAP diet.
WHERE TO DRINK
Let’s start with where to drink. Low FODMAP London bars might seem hard to come about, but it’s not as hard as you think. Here’s my Top London drinking spots at the moment that also have low Fodmap food options:
- Zetter Townhouse – Set in a Victorian townhouse in Clerkenwell you feel like you are drinking in a gorgeous old English manor house – look out for the very cool taxidermy and share a low FODMAP friendly chartreuse board with friends
- Sushi Samba – Glass bar on the 39th Floor of Heron Tower with amazing view of the city and a year round open roof top, it also serves amazing sushi (which is mainly low FODMAP) to snack on if you are peckish
- The Florist arm – A cool pub in Bethnal Green not only do they serve gluten free pizza but also gluten free beer
WHAT TO DRINK
Now drinking on the low FODMAP diet; everyone is individual in terms of the amount of alcohol you can drink, but alcohol is an irritant to the gut so you will need to work out how much you can tolerate. Saying that there are some alcohols which are much better than others:
If you are going to drink wine, dry white wine is the best as it contains the least amount of fructose. I personally can’t tolerate red wine but I know that some people can – 1 glass is recommended. Unfortunately rose is the worst in terms of the amount of FODMAPs – the way it is fermented means it is hard to digest. Champagne and Prosecco is on a case by case basis – I can tolerate about a glass but more than that, the bubbles hurt my stomach and it bloats me.
Beer & Cider
Limit yourself to no more than one a day unless you are drinking gluten free – there has been a huge rise in the amout that are produced now so you should be able to find it in most supermarkets. Cider is unfortunately not tolerated on the low FODMAP diet. Cider is made with apples which contains both Polyols and Fructose.
Most spirits are okay except Rum I’m afraid, which is high in FODMAPs and cannot be tolerated at all. Be careful with your mixers. Swap things like coke for soda water. My go-to drink is a vodka and soda with lots of fresh lime.
Cocktails can be tough as they often contain juices or syrups that are high in fructose and therefore high in FODMAPs. I think personally if you are going on a night out with friends it is probably safer to avoid them.
Have you been to any of these bars? Where do you like to enjoy a tipple?