Ramadan with IBS: A Guide to Fasting and Gut Health

Posted on March 12, 2024

For people who are living with chronic conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), observing the fasts of Ramadan may require extra preparation and adaptations of management to account for changes to diet and lifestyle.
Even those who don’t typically experience issues may encounter digestive troubles during Ramadan due to the significant change in eating schedules.
Fasting during Ramadan involves abstaining from food and drink from dawn until sunset. Individuals observing fasting may find themselves contemplating how to maintain a nutritious and FODMAP-friendly diet while adhering to religious practices. For those managing IBS and following a low FODMAP diet, careful planning becomes essential.

Tips for a Successful Ramadan on a Low FODMAP Diet:

Meal planning
Plan balanced meals for Iftar, Suhoor and snacks which will you help meet adequate nutrition. There is a small window to eat, therefore maximising this is important, make sure to include a mix of protein, carbohydrates, and fats in your meals. Experiment with herbs and spices to add flavour without relying on high FODMAP ingredients.

After fasting all day, there can be temptation to over eat. To avoid this, try having a small Iftar followed by a snack.
Ensure that you are consuming your meals slowly, chewing your food thoroughly to avoid overeating.

Rehydrate with water and electrolyte-rich beverages during non-fasting hours.
Ensure sufficient water intake by drinking when breaking your fast, during iftar, before bed, and at suhoor.

Adapt to changing sleep patterns during the month. Structure your day to allow time for rest or catching up on sleep, if possible. Adequate sleep is crucial for waking up for the suhoor meal and preparing for the next fast.

Medical management.
With the changes to your schedule of sleep and mealtimes. Adjust medication timings with your GP/Pharmacist to align with the new schedule.

Connecting with Community
Embrace the sense of community during Ramadan. Share your low FODMAP journey, exchange recipes, and seek support within your community. Remember, many traditional dishes can be modified to align with a low FODMAP diet, allowing you to savour cultural flavours while prioritising gut health.

Be compassionate with yourself
Acknowledge that there may be days when your IBS flares up, and fasting might be challenging. Consider non-fasting days or rest days as exceptions until you feel able to fast again. Your health is the top priority. If fasting is not feasible, explore alternative ways to observe the month, such as prayer, charity, and self-improvement.


As Ramadan concludes with the celebration of Eid al-Fitr, marked by three days of joy with food, family, and friends, those struggling with symptoms are encouraged to space out high FODMAP foods to avoid stacking, adjusting quantities as needed. You can use our free app to calculate stacking in your meal. Learn more here.
By incorporating mindful meal planning, hydration, and community engagement, individuals can experience a spiritually fulfilling Ramadan while supporting their digestive well-being.
We wish everyone celebrating a wonderful Ramadan!

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