20 Mar 2020

Monash University Low FODMAP Diet App wins Gold in Edison Awards

The Monash University Low FODMAP Diet app has received Gold in the 2020 Edison Awards for the Consumer Electronics and Information Technology category and Wellness Platforms subcategory.

The Edison Best New Product Awards™ is an annual competition honouring excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centred design, and innovation.

"Low FODMAP" is a household term now, most having heard of it and probably even knowing it's something to do with sugars in the diet. That is due to the sustained efforts of a research team in the Department of Gastroenterology at Monash University.

The FODMAP concept was first published in 2005 as part of a hypothesis paper on which Professor Peter Gibson was lead author. In this paper, it was proposed that a collective reduction in the dietary intake of all indigestible or slowly absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates would minimise stretching of the intestinal wall. This was proposed to reduce stimulation of the gut’s nervous system and provide the best chance of reducing symptom generation in people with IBS. At the time, there was no collective term for indigestible or slowly absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates, so the term ‘FODMAP’ was created to improve understanding and facilitate communication of the concept.

The low FODMAP diet was originally developed by the team at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. The Monash team undertook the first research to investigate whether a low FODMAP diet improved symptom control in patients with IBS and established the mechanism by which the diet exerted its effect. Monash University also established a rigorous food analysis program to measure the FODMAP content of a wide selection of Australian and international foods. The FODMAP composition data generated by Monash University updated previous data that was based on limited literature, with guesses (sometimes wrong) made where there was little information.

As a result of this program of research and FODMAP food analysis, a comprehensive and accurate database now exists describing the FODMAP content of food; scientists now understand the mechanism by which the diet works, and there is sound evidence indicating that a low FODMAP diet improves symptom control in approximately three out of every four people with IBS and other FGIDs (such as simple bloating).

Most significant from the Edison Award perspective has been the development of the low FODMAP app for public use. The team responsible for developing the app is headed by Associate Professor Jane Muir, who has been collaborating with Prof Gibson since 2001.

Among the nomination entries comprising the best products, services, and businesses in innovation for the year 2020,  the Monash low FODMAP diet app was chosen as a winner by a panel of over 3,000 leading business executives from around the world. “After a thorough review, the Edison Awards Judges recognize the Monash app as a game-changing innovation standing out among the best new products and services launched in their category,” said Frank Bonafilia, Executive Director of the Edison Awards.

About the Edison Awards: The Edison Awards is the world's most revered Innovation Award dedicated to recognizing and honoring the best in innovation and innovators since 1987. For more information about the Edison Awards complete program and a list of past winners, visit www.edisonawards.com.

About the Monash University team and product: https://www.monashfodmap.com/

Media Contact: Lauren Masselli: 207.890.3747

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