A low FODMAP diet involves avoiding foods that can be hard on your digestion. There’s a lot of scientific evidence that following this diet can potentially help with digestive issues like irritable bowel syndrome, which typically involves bloating, cramps, constipation, or gas. This is because some people have difficulty digesting carbohydrates. The acronym FODMAP actually stands for “fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols.” These are short-chain carbohydrates that some people have difficulty eating without experiencing pain. There are some individuals who are allergic to all types of these, but others may only be sensitive to one or two types. People often adopt this diet in order to figure out what they should eliminate from their diet. Keep reading to learn more about low FODMAP guidelines and food substitutionsTable of Contents
What can’t you Eat on a Low FODMAP Diet?
Oligosaccharides typically cover wheat, legumes, artichokes, garlic, and onion. Disaccharides include products with lactose, like milk and yogurt. Monosaccharides contain fructose, which includes apples, pears, mangos, and watermelon. Polyols contain mannitol and sorbitol, which can be found in apples, pears, mushrooms, cauliflower, and stone fruit. These are just a few examples. And some people may not be as sensitive to one type as another.
How do you Substitute Aromatics like Garlic and Onion for a Low FODMAP?
A great low FODMAP onion substitute is the green onion powder from Gourmend Foods. Instead of using the entire onion, Gourmend Foods only uses green onion tops so that it’s gentle on your gut. Each bottle of green onion powder uses nearly two pounds of organic Negi scallion tops. They have extra green sprouts and don’t sacrifice any of the flavor. All you need is to add a small amount to your food, and you’ll find that it has the onion flavor you’re looking for in a dish. Gourmend Foods also sells garlic scape powder, garlic powder, and even an organic chicken broth. That way, you get to enjoy your favorite savory flavors without wreaking havoc on your digestion.
What can you Use in Place of Wheat Products?
Since wheat isn’t low FODMAP-friendly, a great substitute would be to use rice-based products. For example, you can choose to have brown rice pasta instead of one that’s made with wheat. There are also rice-based crackers for when you want to snack. You can even opt for a gluten-free sandwich bread instead of regular wheat bread, as gluten-free products typically don’t contain wheat. But keep in mind that some gluten-free products do have other types of high-FODMAP ingredients like inulin or fructose.
Are there Low FODMAP Alternatives to Dairy?
Nowadays, there are plenty of non-dairy alternatives for people who have issues digesting lactose—that’s nearly 70 percent of the world’s population! There are plenty of vegan ice creams, yogurts, and milks that are made of FODMAP-friendly foods like oat, rice, or hemp. Some people who eat a low FODMAP diet can still enjoy select types of yogurts without issues. But if that isn’t you, there are still plenty of options available.
Can you Still Drink soda or Alcohol on a low FODMAP diet?
Unfortunately, soda is usually full of high-fructose corn syrup or other added polyols. You may want to opt for flavored carbonated water or sparkling water instead. Alcohol can be consumed, but it’s best to have a limited intake. Stick to a small amount of wine, clear spirits, or whiskey as to not mess with your digestion.
While a low FODMAP diet may seem limited and restrictive at first, there are plenty of substitutions you can make. That way, you don’t have to choose between prioritizing your digestive health and enjoying your favorite foods.