Low FODMAP diet updates and surprises!

The low FODMAP diet continues to morph along with the all the FODMAP food analysis done at Monash University. Recently, the FODMAP research team at Monash released food updates, including some US products that I sent to the team a while back, in their Android version of their low FODMAP diet app.

The iPhone version of Monash University’s low FODMAP app is due to be released in a few weeks. Stay tuned iPhone and iPad users!

Here is a sneak peek of the new app revealing some new data on plant-based dairy alternatives.Android app

Interestingly, rice milk was shown to be high FODMAP, coconut milk in the carton (not canned) was found to be high FODMAP and almond milk was found to be low FODMAP or green lighted! Perhaps, because some (probably most) almond milks use very little almonds to make the product! I wonder if a homemade almond milk product would be high FODMAP? Hemp milk was green lighted as well!

It can be a bit frustrating for FODMAPers and dietitians alike as we need to adapt to new food lists for the low FODMAP diet as the food analysis and research evolves. If you are following the low FODMAP diet and drinking rice milk and it does not trigger your symptoms, then you might continue to drink rice milk. There is no need to be more strict with the diet than you need to be!

On the new app, saltine crackers sourced from the US were found to be low FODMAP in small portion. An example of how you can enjoy a few foods with wheat flour as long as you limit to the portions outlined on the app. The low FODMAP diet is NOT a gluten free diet although it does reduce gluten rich foods.

Remember, the low FODMAP diet is a learning diet, not a life-long diet.  It is an elimination diet in which you restrict FODMAPs for 2-6 weeks followed by a re-introduction phase or challenge phase. Why? Because we know that a low FODMAP diet reduces some healthy gut bacteria populations and we don’t know how that may impact our health in the long term. These beneficial microbes particularly enjoy eating undigested fructans and GOS, so incorporating some of these prebiotics (foods for our gut microbes) to your gut’s tolerance is a good goal.

If you have any questions about the Android app updates, Monash University has a good FAQ page here to guide you.

And meanwhile, I will be very busy updating my educational tools and handouts to provide you with the most up-to-date info!





24 replies on “Low FODMAP diet updates and surprises!

  • Michelle Peterson

    I just went to my Google Play to update my app, but they are still showing the previous (1.3) version.

    Also, as I look at my 1.3 version, the soy (protien) milk and the almond milk are there, green lighted.

    Does this mean that soy yogurt and almond milk yogurt are green lighted, too?


  • Candelaria Tovar

    The “stuff a spud” looks good, I think I have everything I need and will be making this for lunch or dinner; if not the “spud”, than the “zucchini pasta”. but then, the zucchini pancakes also look great. Thanks to you I have wonderful choices. Thanks for all you do. Ms Tovar

  • sss

    Thanks for this! Did they say what brand of Almond Milk? I thought the gums were off limits..that would be great!

  • Elizabeth

    I also wondered about homemade almond mik, the packaged version is mostly water! Almond meal is often used as a flour substitute however I’m sure it equates to more than 10 almonds in a serve of cake /muffin.

  • Linda

    I make my own almond milk, I use 1 cup of almonds per 6 cups water. I may start to water it down more now. As for rice milk, I would think it would depend on which brand because of additives, or is it the rice itself? I wonder how homemade raw rice milk would be. I found the rice milk I use to drink had vegetable oil in it which I think did not agree with me. Again trial and error.

  • Kate Watson

    I think many people, myself included, were so surprised by this news on rice milk! Do you have any thoughts as to why it is high since rice itself is FODMAP friendly? Maybe something to do with the processing of rice milk which results in concentration of the oligos? It’s hard for me to wrap my head around that being high and almond milk being low, seems counter intuitive!

    • katescarlata

      It sounds like perhaps a processing thing. It will be interesting to see where the low FODMAP diet goes–more research to be done and more food analysis to be compiled.

  • Julie Delorme

    Hello Kate,

    Thanks for these news.

    Don’t you think rice and oat milks are high in FODMAP because most of these milks contain caroub powder?


    Julie Delormen, the french FODMAP dietitian 😉

    • katescarlata

      Hi Julie, I don’t know which brands were tested–but I don’t see caroub powder on the brands I have looked at in the US. I think this diet will continue to evolve for some time.

  • Jaimie Edmunds

    What are your thoughts on flax milk? I didn’t see it on the list. I typically use coconut milk because we have nut allergies. This could be why I still feel bloated a lot. Bummer.

  • Amy

    Hi Kate, thanks for the update. I am very eagerly awaiting for the iPhone/iPad version to be released!

    This update is very interesting. Personally, I recently have been struggling a bit with conclusively identifying potential sensitivities to different non-dairy milks and have been trying to determine if it could partly be related to additives (guar gum, locust bean gum, gellan gum, etc.) that are sometimes ingredients in the store bought versions. Do you know if it is possible to tell what brands of the milk were tested – or to confirm if they contained any other ingredients that may be part of the issue?

    • katescarlata

      For the rice milk—I imagine it was sourced in Australia. I did send them many US products–but alternative milks were not one of them. I do wonder about the gums and additives too. Just not food for us.

  • Wendy

    I found I can’t just go by the Red Light / Green Light part of the app. I have to open it up and look at why thy say it is Red. Often it is Red at a certain amount and Green in a lower amount….many times I’m only going to have that lower amount. Many times the Red offending part is something that I’ve found doesn’t bother me personally…and since this isn’t a forever diet, I think that is more important than just looking at the Red and thinking…I shouldn’t eat that, I should find out what my triggers are and to stay away from that FODMAP.
    So I personally never trust the Red Light on it’s own. I always open it up and see why it’s red. Often I find I can eat at least a little of it.

    It did startle me at first when it said the coconut milk in the box was Red, but not in the can….I recently switched from the can to the box for my smoothies. But the amount I use is still green for either container. No wonder it didn’t bother me. 🙂

    Many times I do wonder when they rate things like…Rice Milk…well certain brands have a lot more junk in them than other brands. I’m sure certain brands would rate very much in the RED light. But possibly others wouldn’t. It’s just hard when you don’t know what the extra ingredients are in things they are testing. Makes me tilt my head and go…humph?

    So my biggest suggestion about using this app, make sure when you see a Red Light…don’t get disheartened too soon…open it up and see why it is red. There is a chance you can have it in a lower amount at least.

  • Carol Butterfield

    Like the others, I am confused by the red light on rice milk, especially when it is on your Low FODMAP shopping list. One of the difficulties of using the elimination diet is I haven’t yet found a dietitian in my area who is trained in it. I have found one who is willing to work with it, but so far she’s still mostly in learning mode.
    There is so much going on and changing it is hard to be sure which information is most up to date.

    • katescarlata

      Hi Carol, the low FODMAP diet is a new and very evolving diet. I completely appreciate your frustration. I have adapted my checklists and grocery shopping list NUMEROUS times with the ongoing changes and updates with food analysis. I just learned about these updates while on vacation last week. And, will begin the arduous task of updating ALL of my materials to keep them up to date! Despite the ongoing changes with the low FODMAP diet—the bulk of the low and high FODMAP food lists remain the same. Yes, there are discrepancies here and there–and I am afraid that it will remain that way for some time as more researchers analyze food for FODMAPs. The analysis is not perfect–there will be lab error and difference in food analysis methods.

      • Carol Butterfield

        Thank you, Kate, for all your work. I do understand that things are still evolving.
        Does the app information on rice milk include the full ingredient list from the package of rice milk? That would help us figure out whether the rice milk in our local Arizona store is the same as the one they tested, and would make me more inclined to add it to my resources.
        My system seems to change, too. There are days when I can eat a particular combination of foods with no bad reaction, then a day later eat the same items (even left-overs) and suffer from bouts of diarrhea. The changes add to the difficulty of determining what is causing problems and what is safe to use.

  • Patrick

    Kate, thanks for this and all of your wisdom on FODMAPs. In this post, as in many others, you say that the elimination phase is temporary. I understand that means that you only eliminate *all* FODMAPs from your diet for a limited period. But what about the FODMAPs that can’t be tolerated after the elimination phase ends – let’s say you reintroduce everything, and garlic and onions still cause problems. Do you eliminate (or limit) those particular FODMAPs for life?

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