High FODMAP Foods to Avoid and Low FODMAP Alternatives | Best in Gluten Free | Schär (2024)

You’ve heard the saying, “You are what you eat.” While you may not literally turn into a banana if you eat one, the food you put into your body has an impact on your health and bodily function. Certain foods are more nutritious than others and some are easier to digest as well. If you suffer from digestive issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), you may need to be extra careful about what you eat.

Many people who suffer from IBS find that removing certain foods from their diet helps prevent flare-ups. Fermentable oligo-, di-, mono-saccharides and polyols or FODMAPs are a group of short-chain carbohydrates that can be difficult for people with IBS to digest. Removing these foods from your diet could go a long way in relieving your symptoms and helping you manage your condition.

Removing high FODMAP foods from your diet doesn’t have to be a big ordeal. In fact, there are plenty of low FODMAP alternatives you can replace them with. Read on to learn more about high FODMAP foods you should avoid and which low FODMAP alternatives to choose instead.

9 High FODMAP Food Groups and What to Eat Instead
If you suffer from IBS, you’ll eventually realize that food is a major trigger for your symptoms. For many people, refined carbohydrates, processed foods, dairy products, and sugary or carbonated drinks tend to trigger a flare-up. For others, you may experience a worsening of symptoms after eating a large meal, consuming too much fiber, or indulging in fried or fatty foods. Every individual’s triggers are unique, so it’s important to track your symptoms to learn what foods you need to avoid.

Though everyone is different, there are certain foods which tend to be problematic for a majority of IBS sufferers – they’re called FODMAPs. This group of short-chain carbohydrates comes with a high risk for triggering digestive symptoms, so many people with IBS choose to avoid them.

If you’re curious to see whether removing FODMAPs from your diet might help with your symptoms, check out the list of high FODMAP foods below and the low FODMAP alternatives to replace them with.

1. Wheat
Wheat is a major contributor of FODMAPs in the typical Western diet, not necessarily because it is a concentrated source of FODMAPs, but because it is often consumed in significant quantities. The most common sources of wheat include bread, cereal, pasta, and baked goods, though you can also find it in lesser amounts as a thickener in products like soups and sauces.

What to Eat Instead: Brown rice, buckwheat, millet, gluten-free oats, polenta, quinoa, tapioca

2. Onions and Garlic
Both onions and garlic are concentrated sources of fructans. The quantity of fructans in these foods depends on its form. Dried garlic, for example, contains three times as many fructans as fresh garlic and shallots contain significantly more fructans than Spanish onions. Onions and garlic can be particularly difficult to avoid since they are used as flavorings in many foods.

What to Eat Instead: Chives, ginger, scallions (green parts only)

3. Some Fruits
Fructose is a FODMAP found in all fruits, but some fruits contain less fructose than others. Glucose, another type of sugar found in fruit, is not considered a FODMAP, but an essential source of energy for the body. High FODMAP fruits include apples, apricots, cherries, figs, mangoes, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, and watermelon. If you choose to eat these fruits, limit yourself to 1 serving per sitting.

What to Eat Instead: Unripe bananas, blueberries, kiwi, limes, mandarin oranges, oranges, papaya, pineapple, rhubarb, strawberries

4. Certain Vegetables
Vegetables contain a wide array of FODMAPs and several vegetables contain multiple types. The primary group of vegetables you want to avoid is cruciferous vegetables which includes artichokes, asparagus, beets, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, celery, leeks, mushrooms, and snow peas.

What to Eat Instead: Bean sprouts, carrot, eggplant, kale, tomato, spinach, zucchini

5. Beans and Legumes
Legumes, beans, and pulses have a reputation for causing gas and bloating – this is primarily due to their FODMAP content. The main FODMAP found in this food group is called galacato-oligosaccharides (also referred to as GOS or galactans), and the amount of GOS in beans and legumes can be affected by their preparation method. Simply boiling lentils, for example, can cut the GOS content in half. Some of the highest FODMAP beans and legumes include baked beans, black-eyed peas, broad beans, butter beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, lentils, soybeans, and split peas.

What to Eat Instead: Eggs, tofu, nuts, seeds, low FODMAP veggies

6. Sweeteners
Sweeteners are hidden everywhere in the Western diet and they can increase the total FODMAP content of even low-FODMAP foods. Even natural sweeteners like agave nectar and honey are high in FODMAPs. Other high-FODMAP foods you may want to avoid include high-fructose corn syrup, molasses, sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, and isomalt.

What to Eat Instead: Glucose, maple syrup, sucrose, aspartame, saccharin, Stevia

7. Refined Grains
Though wheat is one of the most significant sources of FODMAPs in the Western diet, other grains are significant sources as well. In fact, some grains like rye contain double the FODMAP content of wheat. Processing methods play a role in determining the FODMAP content of a food. For example, sourdough involves a fermentation step which helps break some of the FODMAPs down. High-FODMAP grains you may want to avoid include amaranth, barley, and rye.

What to Eat Instead: Brown rice, buckwheat, corn, millet, gluten-free oats, polenta, quinoa, tapioca

8. Dairy Products
Lactose is a major category in FODMAPs and can be found in many dairy products. Some dairy products, on the other hand, are fairly low in lactose which makes them low in FODMAPs. This primarily applies to hard and matured cheeses like cheddar and parmesan. High-FODMAP dairy products include things like cottage cheese, cream cheese, milk, quark, ricotta, and yogurt.

What to Eat Instead: Cheddar cheese, cream, feta cheese, lactose-free milk, parmesan, dairy-free milk alternatives

9. Certain Beverages
Beverages made from high-FODMAP ingredients are understandably high in FODMAPS, but other beverages are as well. Certain types of tea and alcohol are high in FODMAPs, as are certain beverages made from low-FODMAP foods such as orange juice. Oranges may be low in FODMAPs but many oranges are needed to make the juice which adds to the FODMAP content. High-FODMAP beverages you may want to limit include chai tea, chamomile tea, coconut water, dessert wine, and rum.

What to Eat Instead: Black tea, coffee, green tea, gin, peppermint tea, vodka, water, white tea

Other Low FODMAP Foods to Enjoy
In addition to the alternatives listed above, there are a number of other foods that are considered safe for IBS sufferers. Plenty of nuts and seeds, for example, are considered low FODMAP when consumed in moderation. This includes nuts like almonds, brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, peanuts, pecans, pine nuts, and walnuts. Low FODMAP seeds include chia, pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower. There are also a number of protein choices which are low in FODMAPs like beef, chicken, eggs, fish, lamb, pork, turkey, and shellfish. Some IBS sufferers are also able to tolerate lactose-free dairy products.

If you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, you’re not alone. IBS complaints are responsible for between 2.4 and 3.5 million annual doctor visits in the United States alone. Rather than suffering with your IBS symptoms, take charge of your health and make the dietary changes necessary to relieve your symptoms. Get started by trying some of the low FODMAP alternatives listed above.

High FODMAP Foods to Avoid and Low FODMAP Alternatives | Best in Gluten Free | Schär (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Nathanael Baumbach

Last Updated:

Views: 6374

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (75 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Nathanael Baumbach

Birthday: 1998-12-02

Address: Apt. 829 751 Glover View, West Orlando, IN 22436

Phone: +901025288581

Job: Internal IT Coordinator

Hobby: Gunsmithing, Motor sports, Flying, Skiing, Hooping, Lego building, Ice skating

Introduction: My name is Nathanael Baumbach, I am a fantastic, nice, victorious, brave, healthy, cute, glorious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.