How to Choose Low FODMAP Foods As a Vegetarian
If you have a sensitive stomach, you may want to avoid FODMAPs –fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols, the fancy term for sugars and carbohydrates found in some foods.Choosing low FODMAP foods is sometimes used to ease irritable bowel syndrome, cutting down on symptoms like gas, bloating, and abdominal cramping.As a vegetarian, your diet is already somewhat limited. Choosing low FODMAP foods and working with healthcare professionals may help you feel better and improve some stomach issues.
Maintaining a Balanced, Low-FODMAP Diet
Read up on which foods contain FODMAPs and which do not.Before starting a low-FODMAP diet, acquaint yourself with which kinds of foods are likely to contain FODMAPs and which are good dietary choices.
- You might start by consulting a general information sheet, like this one:
- FODMAPs are sugars, including fructose, lactose, and sugar alcohols (sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, and moltitol). They tend to occur in certain types of fruits and vegetables, juices, honey, processed foods, sweeteners, and certain types of medications, like cough drops and cough syrups.
- If you are a vegetarian and wish to cut FODMAPs from your diet, you should speak to a dietitian to ensure that you are getting the nutrients you need.
Select low-fructose fruits.Many berries, citrus, melons, and some tropical fruits are low in fructose and therefore low FODMAP foods. Try to limit your servings of fruit to ½ cup per meal, even low-FODMAP fruit. When opting for fresh fruit, choose from the following:
- Bananas, kiwis, pineapple, and papaya
- Blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, and strawberries
- Cantaloupe and honeydew melons
- Clementines, tangelos, grapefruit, lemons, limes, and oranges
- Grapes and rhubarb
Supplement your diet with low-FODMAP veggies.Though not all vegetables are appropriate for a low-FODMAP diet, there are lots of tasty and nutritious vegetables you can eat. Regularly alternate which vegetables you eat so you have a balanced diet, and include some of these in most of your meals:
- Alfalfa and lettuce
- Bamboo shoots, bok choy, and seaweed
- Carrots, spinach, and tomatoes
- Chives, leeks, and scallions
- Parsnips and potatoes
- Cucumber, yellow squash, zucchini, and eggplant
- Green beans
- Red and orange bell peppers
- Pickles and radishes
Choose gluten-free products.Gluten is not a FODMAP, but it’s often found in high FODMAP foods. Gluten is a protein that naturally occurs in wheat, which is also high in FODMAPs. Gluten-free options are widely available in many grocery stores and restaurants, so when possible choose gluten-free products to minimize your exposure to wheat.You can also select white or brown rice, corn chips and corn tortillas, millet, quinoa, cornmeal, and polenta.
- Stay away from high-FODMAP grains and grain-alternatives like barley, couscous, lentils, inulin, and rye.
Get your fats from nuts and oils.Since you don’t eat meat, you need to get your “good fats” from somewhere. Replace meat with low-FODMAP options like olive oil, nuts, and seeds. Mayonnaise, though higher in fat, is another appropriate choice.
- The exceptions are pistachios and cashews, which are high-FODMAP nuts.
Select the right sweeteners for your food.Splenda, Aspartame, and – in small amounts – sugar and maple syrup are low-FODMAP options to sweeten your food. Choose these over high-FODMAP sweeteners like honey, molasses, and high-fructose corn syrup.Check the ingredients lists on products you buy – many products contain high-fructose corn syrup.
- Splenda and aspartame are artificial sweeteners that may pose health risks. When possible, sweeten your food with natural ingredients or avoid sweeteners altogether.
- Check ingredients lists and avoid sweeteners ending in “ol” like xylitol or sorbitol. Stay away from isomalt, at well.
Flavor your meals with fresh herbs.Add some extra nutrients to your meals with flavorful herbs. Choose low-FODMAP options like basil, coriander/cilantro, mint, marjoram, oregano, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper, paprika, ginger, cumin, and rosemary.
- For instance, try gluten-free pasta with tomatoes, spinach, and pesto sauce!
Limiting High-FODMAP Foods in Your Diet
Avoid high-FODMAP fruits.Some fruits contain lots of fructose that can irritate your stomach.Avoid the high-FODMAP fruits listed below. Also stay away from dried fruit and fruit juice, which contain a lot of fructose. Avoid:
- Apricots, plums, prunes, and figs
- Peaches and nectarines
- Blackberries and cherries
Stay away from oligo vegetables.Vegetables are an important part of a vegetarian diet. Load up on vegetables of all colors to get the nutrients you need. However, stay away from the following veggies that are high-FODMAP foods:
- Brussels sprouts
- Chicory Root
- Chickpeas (and related products like hummus and falafel)
- Sweet potato
Go lactose-free.Unfortunately, lactose is a FODMAP and most dairy products contain lactose. Remove cow, sheep, and goat milk and soft cheese from your diet. Stay away from custard, ice cream, and yogurt. Replace these dairy products with lactose-free milk, rice milk, coconut milk, almond milk, and lactose-free yogurt. The good news is that butter and some hard cheeses are low-FODMAP, so enjoy swiss, feta, cheddar, and parmesan cheese in small amounts.
- Make sure you get enough calcium in your lactose-free diet. Oranges, spinach, rhubarb, and calcium-fortified products like bread and juice are great vegetarian choices.
- Get enough vitamin D by eating eggs and lactose-free yogurt. Get some sun, too – your body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight.
Make your own veggie burgers.Unfortunately, store-bought veggie burgers often contain wheat, beans, or other high-FODMAP foods.Avoid frozen veggie burgers and restaurant veggie burgers. Make your own veggie burgers at home with low-FODMAP veggies or rice.
- Experiment with recipes you like. Try options like peeled zucchini and almonds, eggplant and herbed millet, or potato with carrot and rosemary.
Managing Your Diet
Consult your doctor.Talk to your doctor first if you’re considering making a big change to your diet. If you’re trying to manage stomach problems, your family physician or a gastroenterologist can help create the best diet for you.Tell your doctor if you’re taking any medications or have any health conditions.
Work with a dietician.Consider working closely with a dietician to enact a low-FODMAP diet. This is especially important if you have severe stomach problems, a limited diet like vegan or paleo, or have any health conditions. Choose a licensed dietician in your area. They can help you have a full, well-rounded, healthy diet that suits your needs.
Reintroduce foods one at a time.You may not have to avoid all FODMAP foods because you may not be sensitive to all of them. After you cut back your diet to low-FODMAP foods, reintroduce foods one at a time. Pay attention to how you feel and if you experience any bloating, gas, or stomach pain. If so, cut the food out again. If not, feel free to reincorporate it into your diet.
- Add in a single food for 2 days. Wait a few days before adding in another new food.For example, try eating yogurt for a couple days in a row, and see if any symptoms develop.
- Don’t try to reintroduce more than one food at a time – e.g., if you are trying out yogurt, don’t try to reintroduce wheat bread at the same time. If symptoms do develop, this will make it impossible to tell which food is causing the problem.
Keep a food diary.Keep track of how your stomach feels with a food diary. Record what food you add or remove from your diet, if you experience symptoms, what symptoms you have (bloating, gas, pain, etc.), or if your symptoms improve. This can help you keep track of the changes you make and know which benefit you.
- You can also download an app to use for this purpose.
- Vary the foods that you eat regularly so you get a balanced diet. For instance, have one low-FODMAP food one day and a different low-FODMAP food the next day.
- You may not always expect high-FODMAP ingredients to be in the foods that you eat. Make a habit of checking the list of ingredients on products you use.
Video: Low FODMAP Diet: Explained for Beginners
MORE: How To Embed Instagram Photos and Videos
Pet Nutrition: 5 Dog Food Ingredients to Avoid
The Juiciest New Books to Add to Your Summer Beach ReadingList
This Woman Just Gave Birth on a Plane
Mandukasan Yoga benefits Back Pain Constipation In Hindi
This High School Principals Strict Rule About Parents Dropping Off Forgotten Items Is Going Viral
How to Add Bikini Accessories
Kristen Stewart On Love: I Don’t Pressure Myself
How to Win a Domestic Violence Case
How to Use Hand Sanitizer
17 Things You Need to Know About Natural Birth
How To Wear This Season’s Must-Have, The Pinafore Dress, If You’re Over 40
Heres How Jennifer Lawrence Preps Her Skin for the Oscars
Laser Hair Removal Tips
15 Cute Buns for Summer