Low FODMAP Diet Label Reading.
What is safe for me to eat?

Label reading for general healthy eating can be difficult enough, but when one is on a Low FODMAP Diet this is made even more difficult!

Here are some quick tips that will help you find low FODMAP foods when you shop….

  1. Go digital: There are some great apps out there including the app- FODMAP Friendly ‘eat with confidence’. On this app there is a list of foods that have been tested to identify their FODMAP content showing you which particular FODMAPs are high or low. This is particularly handy for those of you who have done breath testing as the app tells you which FODMAP is too high i.e. if a food is high in lactose but your breath tests showed no evidence of lactose intolerance then this food is ok to eat.

 

  1. Look for the logo: The green FODMAP Friendly logo (pictured below) is the only registered certification trademark certifying FODMAP levels in packaged food.

logo-200x200

  1. Go Fresh: Go for foods which aren’t packaged! Always best to go for fresh produce with no additives rather than packaged foods. Use your FODMAP Friendly app to help you understand what foods you can buy and what portions you can eat. Kate Scarlata a FODMAP dietitian in America has also created a great shopping list.

 

  1. Go for what you know: If the ingredients list is super long and full of ingredients that you have never heard of it is probably not the best product to buy anyway.

 

  1. Look at where the ingredient is on the list: Ingredients lists are always in order of weight. Therefore, the ingredient making up the greatest percentage of that product will be first on the list and the smallest percentage will be at the end. If a high FODMAP food is at the end of the list this product may be tolerable.
  2. Trial and Error: When implementing FODMAPs back into your diet choose foods lower in FODMAPs and build up to high FODMAP foods. For example, choose a product with garlic powder which is near the end of the list and see how this goes. If it is tolerable try a product that has a higher percentage of garlic powder then maybe implement some garlic into a home cooked meal. Everyone is different, so listen to your body and work with an Accredited Practising Dietitian to see what you can tolerate and how to start implementing more foods back into your diet.
  3. The ingredients you probably know: Other than the names you already know – fructose, high fructose corn syrup, fructans, fructooligosaccharides, garlic, onion, fruit juice (apple,pear, mango),honey,  wheat and rye (first three ingredients), sorbitol, lactose,  milk powder.
  4. The ingredients you may not know to look out for: isomalt, mannitol, xylitol, inulin, chichory root extract, agave syrup, carob powder, coconut water, tahini.
  5. How do I know which FODMAP Friendly food is the healthier option?

The Australian Government website ‘Eat for Health’ has a great resource which explains how to read food labels and what to look for. See a mini picture below or visit https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/sites/default/files/files/eatingwell/efh_food_label_example_130621.pdf

howtoreadfoodlabelssmall

Here is an example of two different muesli bars. One is low FODMAP and the other high FODMAP. Let’s see if you can pick which one is which……….

 

Muesli Bar 1

Ingredients Whole Seeds Mix (41%), (buckwheat, sunflower, pepitas, chia), brown rice syrup, almonds (4%), hazelnuts (4%), puffed rice, millet puffs, rice bran oil, flaxseed meal, cinnamon (2%), psyllium husks, natural flavour, natvia (erythritol, steviol glycosides)

 

Muesli Bar 2

Ingredients Whole Grain Oats 27%, Glucose, Almonds 13%, Fruit 10% (Sultanas, Currants, Apple), Yoghurt Compound 10% (Sugar, Vegetable Oil, Yoghurt Powder 10%, Natural Greek Yoghurt Flavour, Milk Solids, Emulsifier [Soy Lecithin], Food Acid [330]), Seeds 6% (Pepitas, Sunflower Seeds, Sesame Seeds), Honey, Sunflower Oil, Puffed Rice (Rice Flour, Rice Bran), Oat Fibre, Natural Vanilla Flavour.

 

So what do you think???

 

 

 

I am sure you realised that muesli bar 1 was the low FODMAP option and muesli bar 2 for high FODMAP. The ingredients highlighted in red are high FODMAP.

Muesli Bar 1 = low FODMAP

Ingredients Whole Seeds Mix (41%), (buckwheat, sunflower, pepitas, chia), brown rice syrup, almonds (4%), hazelnuts (4%), puffed rice, millet puffs, rice bran oil, flaxseed meal, cinnamon (2%), psyllium husks, natural flavour, natvia (erythritol, steviol glycosides)

 

Muesli Bar 2 = High FODMAP

Ingredients Whole Grain Oats 27%, Glucose, Almonds 13%, Fruit 10% (Sultanas, Currants, Apple), Yoghurt Compound 10% (Sugar, Vegetable Oil, Yoghurt Powder 10%, Natural Greek Yoghurt Flavour, Milk Solids, Emulsifier [Soy Lecithin], Food Acid [330]), Seeds 6% (Pepitas, Sunflower Seeds, Sesame Seeds), Honey, Sunflower Oil, Puffed Rice (Rice Flour, Rice Bran), Oat Fibre, Natural Vanilla Flavour.

 

Label reading when on a Low FODMAP Diet
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