How Do I Know If I Have a Sugar Intolerance?

How Do I Know If I Have a Sugar Intolerance?

What do stomach pain, chronic diarrhea, gas, and bloating have in common? They can be symptoms of Sugar Intolerance. One type of Sugar Intolerance is known as Sucrose Intolerance caused by Congenital Sucrase-Isomaltase Deficiency (CSID). While not totally accurate, sometimes CSID is referred to just as Sucrose Intolerance.

With this rare disorder, which is something you’re born with, your body can’t properly digest foods containing sugar because your digestive tract lacks or doesn’t produce enough working forms of two enzymes, sucrase and isomaltase, to get the job done.

Consequently, after consuming foods containing sucrose, you can experience symptoms, such as stomach pain, chronic diarrhea, gas, and bloating.

Even though these symptoms may seem obvious, it can be tough to put the puzzle together because CSID signs overlap with the symptoms of other conditions, such as food allergy, heartburn, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis).

Do you have Sucrose Intolerance caused by CSID? Read these three clues to help pinpoint your problem.

Infographic - Stomach Pain, Gas and Bloating

Clue #1: You experience symptoms after eating a food containing sucrose: dessert, a fruit such as an apple or banana, or even beans.

Besides desserts, such as cookies, cake, and ice cream, many foods naturally contain sucrose, including fruits, such as apples, apricots, grapefruit, oranges, peaches, pineapple, and vegetables like sweet potatoes and peas, and beans. If you routinely experience abdominal pain, chronic diarrhea, gas, and bloating after eating these foods, you could have Sucrose Intolerance caused by CSID.

If you’re not sure which foods might be causing your symptoms, keeping a food diary can help pinpoint patterns.

Clue #2: You tried a low-FODMAP diet, but it didn’t help.

Some of you, thinking you have IBS, a digestive disorder marked by frequent bouts of chronic diarrhea or constipation, or both, try a special diet called low-FODMAP, which stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols.

A low-FODMAP diet reduces your intake of these four groups of carbohydrates, which are believed to cause bloating, gas, and stomach pain in people with IBS.

However, if you have a Sugar Intolerance caused by CSID, a low-FODMAP diet may not work to reduce your digestive symptoms because the low-FODMAP diet includes some foods, such as carrots, chickpeas, corn, squash, oranges, and sweet potatoes, which are naturally high in sucrose.

If you have a Sugar Intolerance caused by CSID, this basic dietary guide can also help you learn which foods to work into your diet more often and which ones to avoid.

If you still have digestive symptoms after following a low-FODMAP diet but notice they tend to go away after following a Sugar Intolerance-friendly food plan, you may have CSID.

Infographic - Suffering from Sugar Intolerance

Clue #3: You’ve been diagnosed with something else, but you still have symptoms.

If you’ve been diagnosed with something else, such as a food allergy, celiac disease, IBS, Crohn’s disease, or ulcerative colitis, but you continue to have symptoms especially after eating despite your treatment, such as chronic diarrhea, stomach pain, gas, and bloating, you may have sucrose intolerance.

People with Sucrose Intolerance caused by CSID can suffer for years unnecessarily because they’ve been misdiagnosed.

How do you know if you have a Sugar Intolerance caused by CSID? Finding out can be a process of elimination and trial and error. To save some steps, take this quiz to help determine if Sugar Intolerance caused by CSID may be the culprit. Then, see your doctor to get some answers.

Sucrose Intolerance Quiz


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Sucrose Intolerance May Be More Common Than You Think