Quantcast

10 Foods to Avoid if You're on a Low FODMAP Diet

Popular

By Dr. Megan Rossi

Food is a common trigger of digestive issues. In particular, foods that are high in fermentable carbs can cause symptoms like gas, bloating and stomach pain.

A group of these carbs is known as FODMAPs and foods can be classified as either high or low in these carbs.

Restricting high-FODMAP foods can provide remarkable relief of gut symptoms, particularly in people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

This article discusses 10 common foods and ingredients that are high in FODMAPs.

What Does High-FODMAP Actually Mean?

FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides and Polyols. These are the scientific names for carbs that may cause digestive issues.

A food is categorized as high-FODMAP according to predefined cut-off levels (1).

Published cut-off levels suggest that a high-FODMAP food contains more than one of the following carbs (2):

  • Oligosaccharides: 0.3 grams of either fructans or galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS)
  • Disaccharides: 4.0 grams of lactose
  • Monosaccharides: 0.2 grams more fructose than glucose
  • Polyols: 0.3 grams of either mannitol or sorbitol

Two universities provide validated FODMAP food lists and apps—Monash University and King's College London.

It's also important to be aware that not everyone should avoid FODMAPs. In fact, FODMAPs are beneficial for most people.

To help decide whether restricting FODMAPs is right for you, read this article. Then, if you do decide to restrict them, make sure to look out for the following 10 foods.

1. Wheat

Wheat is one of the single biggest contributors of FODMAPs in the Western diet (3).

This is because wheat is consumed in large quantities—not because it is a concentrated source of FODMAPs.

In fact, compared to the other nine sources discussed in this article, wheat contains one of the lowest amounts of FODMAPs by weight.

For this reason, foods that contain wheat as a minor ingredient, such as thickeners and flavorings, are considered low-FODMAP.

The most common sources of wheat include bread, pasta, breakfast cereals, biscuits and pastries.

Suggested low-FODMAP swaps: Brown rice, buckwheat, maize, millet, oats, polenta, quinoa and tapioca (4, 5).

Summary: Wheat is the main source of FODMAPs in the Western diet. However, it can be replaced with other, low-FODMAP whole grains.

2. Garlic

Garlic is one of the most concentrated sources of FODMAPs.

Unfortunately, restricting garlic in your diet is notoriously difficult because it's added to many sauces, gravies and flavorings.

In processed food, garlic may be listed among the ingredients as flavoring or natural flavor. Therefore, you need to avoid these ingredients if you are following a strict low-FODMAP diet.

Fructans are the main type of FODMAP in garlic.

However, the quantity of fructans depends on whether the garlic is fresh or dried, as dried garlic contains about three times as many fructans as fresh garlic (6).

Despite being high in FODMAPs, garlic is associated with many health benefits. This is why it should only be avoided in FODMAP-sensitive people.

Suggested low-FODMAP swaps: Chives, chili, fenugreek, ginger, lemongrass, mustard seeds, saffron and turmeric (6, 7, 8).

Summary: Garlic is one of the most concentrated sources of FODMAPs. However, garlic has many health benefits and should only be restricted in FODMAP-sensitive people.

Next Page

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Protestors and police stand on ether side of railway tracks. dpa / picture-alliance

Police have cleared 250 climate activists who stayed overnight at the Garzweiler brown coal mine in western Germany, officials said Sunday.

Read More Show Less
Cecilie_Arcurs / E+ / Getty Images

By Megan Jones and Jennifer Solomon

The #MeToo movement has caused profound shake-ups at organizations across the U.S. in the last two years. So far, however, it has left many unresolved questions about how workplaces can be more inclusive and equitable for women and other diverse groups.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Cigarette butts are the most-littered item found at beach clean ups. John R. Platt

By Tara Lohan

By now it's no secret that plastic waste in our oceans is a global epidemic. When some of it washes ashore — plastic bottles, plastic bags, food wrappers — we get a stark reminder. And lately one part of this problem has been most glaring to volunteers who comb beaches picking up trash: cigarette butts.

Read More Show Less

Andrea Rodgers, second from the right, takes notes during a hearing in the Juliana v. U.S. case before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Portland, Oregon on June 4. Colleague Elizabeth Brown sits to her left, while colleague Julia Olson sits on her right, with co-council Philip Gregory on Julia's right. Robin Loznak / Our Children's Trust

By Fran Korten

On June 4, Andrea Rodgers was in the front row of attorneys sitting before a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court. The court session, held in Portland, Oregon, was to determine whether the climate change lawsuit (Juliana v. United States) brought by 21 young plaintiffs should be dismissed, as requested by the U.S. government, or go on to trial.

Read More Show Less
Seventy Extinction Rebellion protesters were arrested outside The New York Times building Saturday. SCOOTERCASTER / YouTube screenshot

Seventy Extinction Rebellion protesters were arrested outside The New York Times building Saturday as they demanded the paper improve its coverage of the climate crisis, Reuters reported.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Explosions and a blaze at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions Refining Complex on June 21. VOA News / YouTube screenshot

A fire broke out at a Philadelphia oil refinery Friday morning, starting with an explosion so massive it was felt as far away as South Jersey and Delaware County, Pennsylvania, CNN reported.

Read More Show Less
Pexels

By Alina Petre, MS, RD (CA)

Leeks belong to the same family as onions, shallots, scallions, chives and garlic.

Read More Show Less
Asian elephants in Bandipur National Park, India. Mike Prince / CC BY 2.0

By John R. Platt

Some of the tiniest creatures in Myanmar benefit from living near the largest species in the area.

Read More Show Less