Hi catarific! And welcome to the boards!
I don't follow Heather's diet either-- it's way too permissive for me. Most people here eat a variation on the diet, and it's individual feat for each person.
Many of us eat stricter than Heather's diet, especially D-ers, because there's way too much IF (Insoluble Fiber) in hers.
For instance I have "pain pre-dominant IBS-D" which means that the oatmeal Heather touts as being on a list of "safe" foods, literally turns me inside out. If I have a morning dose of oatmeal with water (or as I call it, OUTmeal ) I will have explosive D between 4-20 times that morning with painful trapped gas, and give myself an anal prolapse by mid-afternoon. Safe? Not quite!
Everybody's IBS is different. Isn't that just trite and horrible?? Doctors have their signals crossed, and we really have to turn to each other for guidance and support.
But for the diet itself?
Yeah, it's really just all trial and error. Unfortunately.
Don't let anyone tell you they're the authority. You know YOUR IBS better than anybody. Anyone that tells you something works for EVERYTHING, is selling you something.
Keep in mind 2 things: 1.) TRY EVERYTHING. You never know if something you can tolerate is right there in front of you! Ditch the fruits and vegs if your stomach can't take it that day, and pick up a piece of sourdough soluble fiber bread.
Drink warm water with lunch instead of ice water (cold makes stomach cramps with trapped gas, cramps kickstart an attack...) . Have you tried drinking warm/lukewarm water instead of cold yet? There are lots of good suggestions on these boards from the kind, helpful good people who've been through it!!
And, most importantly,: 2.) WHATEVER WORKS. Do five Altoid peppermints crunched and munched up at once with a swig of warm water make your stomach spasms disappear after a steak dinner? Write it down in your food diary and do it again!!
Both sugar and peppermints are natural anti-spasmodics, like Donnatal. Find what works for YOU and let us know all about it! We're on the same journey, you and us!
I'm sending much love and good wishes your way for this tricky eating season!!! Good luck to you, and welcome again!