Last week, with the help of my colleague Emma Carder, a FODMAP expert dietitian from the UK and my friend Gill, we highlighted some cooking differences and tips in the UK vs US for FODMAPers. This week, Emma and I provide some tips for grocery shopping and low FODMAP brand names in the UK along with a few US alternatives. As most brand name food items have NOT been tested, brand name foods below are recommended based on listed ingredients only. Brand name product recommendations may change over time as more food analysis of brand name foods is accomplished.
If you live in or travel to the UK while following the low FODMAP diet, here are a few tips from Emma Carder Freelance UK Dietitian & Registered Nutritionist
Emma, do you recommend certain brand gluten free bread for those on the low FODMAP diet? Thankfully, gluten free (GF) breads and bread products like pittas, wraps, bagels, pizza bases are a lot easier to find in UK shops now than they were a few years ago. Larger supermarkets tend to have a separate ‘free from’ section for these products again though, due to increasing demand, they often sell out! I often advise people to buy a few products and freeze them so you don’t get caught short! Plus as they’re more expensive to buy freezing helps avoid wasting any too!
These brands & supermarkets listed below all have a few FODMAP friendly bread and bread products available within their ranges. Be sure to read the ingredients for any high FODMAP ingredients such as fruit juice concentrates apple & pear juices, inulin, onion, garlic etc….
Genius | Dietary Specials | Udi’s | Barkat (available via glutenfree-foods online shop)
Tesco | Asda | Marks and Spencer | Sainsbury’s | Waitrose | Coop
If you struggle to find any products in your local shops then buying online can be a good alternative (see below for some free from websites)
US low FODMAP bread/wrap alternatives: UDIs white sandwich bread is a popular choice for bread. Rudi’s original plain tortilla wraps appear low FODMAP as well. Udi’s also makes a nice pizza crust too!
Emma, do you recommend any suitable granola/muesli or ‘energy’ bars that are suitable for a low FODMAP diet? This is a trickier question to answer as virtually all of them seem to have 1 or more added FODMAPS usually honey, fructose, FOS, inulin …….At the moment these are fodmap friendly
9 Bar: Peanut, Cracked Black Pepper
9 Bar Indulge: Cocoa & Raspberry, Cocoa & Coconut, Cocoa & Hazelnut
US Alternatives: Go Macro peanut butter bars (have plain and chocolate chip variety. There is a small amount pea protein in some of these but they are well tolerated by my clients), Nature’s Valley Peanut Butter Granola Bar (has small amount of soy flour-but well tolerated by my clients).
Homemade snacks (some ideas below) can be easy to make and frozen for when you need them!
Dietitian UK: Easy Banana & Yogurt Muffins (yogurt <2tbsp. per serving or could swap to a plain soya) CookLowFodmap: Homemade oatcakes (+ your fav topping *mine is peanut butter & sliced banana!)
Emma Carder Nutrition: Fodmap Friendly Scones
Two Dietitians Do The Fodmap Diet: Fruity Flapjacks
If you have a favourite recipe that’s got a high FODMAP ingredient, why not try it with a fodmap friendly swap it’s sure to taste just as good 😉
For a snack on the go to make at home, consider my peanut butter quinoa bars.
Emma, I have heard of Sesame Snap Bars, what are they?
These are fodmap friendly bite sized sweetened sesame seeds basically just sesame seeds, glucose syrup & sugar!
Are there any suitable milk brands in the UK you recommend?
For regular cow’s milk without the lactose – Arlo’s Lactofree milk is very popular and now available in full fat, semi skimmed and skimmed varieties (fresh & UHT long-life). It’s generally easy to find and usually sits alongside the fresh soya milks in the supermarkets. Marks and Spencer have also recently started selling their own lactose free milk.
In the US, lactaid, Organic Valley lactose free milk & Dairy Ease make suitable lactose free cow’s milk.
Dairy free milk alternatives; soya, oat, rice, nut and coconut milks are all widely available in UK from supermarkets, health food shops and online. Although the majority of these have added calcium and B12 it’s always wise to double check. Some of these milks contain FODMAPs especially– fruit juice concentrates, apple juice, fructose and inulin (chicory root) so do read the labels.
Popular brands in the UK include: Alpro, Oatly, KoKo, Provamel and My Dairy –Free Dream. The supermarkets: Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Marks and Spencer and Morrisons all produce their own varieties of dairy free milks as well.
In the US, the only suitable soy milk appears to be 8th Continent-made from soy protein vs. the whole soybean. There are many rice and coconut milks that appear suitable. Always read label ingredients to ensure no added inulin or other FODMAPs are lurking! Avoid almond milk at this time until more formal testing. It likely is high in oligosaccharides-fructans and GOS.
Provamel also make a pouring natural soya breakfast yogurt which is great with a suitable granola, museli or overnight oats. Again though it’s not supplemented with calcium so you’d need to ensure getting enough from other foods.
What is a good brand of lactose free yogurt that you have found in the UK?
Arla’s Lactofree yogurts are a great option, available in strawberry and raspberry. They tend to be located in separate lactose free chilled sections and often sell out as they are very popular! If you don’t see any, keep checking or ask the store if they have any in stock.
Other fodmap friendly lactose free yogurts brands in the UK include: Alpro and Provamel. These are made using hulled not whole soya beans. Not all flavours are fodmap friendly though as some include: inulin, fructose syrups and fruit concentrates such as apple. Some flavours below that are friendly include –
- Alpro Big Pot: Simply Plain along with Strawberry & Rhubarb are suitable both AND contain added calcium, vitamins B2, B12 & D
- Provamel Big Pots: Natural (& small pots), Lime & Lemon Balm, Vanilla, Blueberry (& small pots), Forest Fruits (& small pots), Raspberry & Vanilla (small pots only) No added calcium or vitamins need to ensure getting enough from other foods.
Provamel yogurts can be found in some health food shops e.g. Holland & Barrett or Whole Foods (mainly London but also Glasgow & Cheltenham) or online via e.g. Ocado, Goodness Direct & Real Foods.
US low lactose yogurt includes Green Valley Yogurt (low lactose sour cream and cream cheese also available) and some Yoplait lactose free yogurts (stick with low FODMAP fruit flavors).
Fodmap Friendly Shopping & General Info
Any particular stores that you recommend for patients to secure gluten free products?
All the big UK supermarkets mentioned above will have ‘free from’ sections where FODMAP followers can hopefully find some suitable products. If you live out of town or only have access to small stores then you may struggle to find suitable products. Online shopping could be your best option here via supermarkets, independent ‘free from’ stores or directly from manufacturers online shops.
Online Free From Stores e.g.
Simply Free, Goodness Direct, Gluten Free Direct, Real Foods, Freego
Product Specific Online Shops e.g.
Foodamentalists – UK online gluten and wheat free store selling pies and baking mixes. Their brownie, chocolate cookie, doughnut and Yorkshire pudding mixes are all fodmap friendly.
Isabel’s Kitchen – UK gluten free wheat free home-baking range. Several products in the range; batter mix, easy pud chocolate, sponge cake and Yorkshire pudding mix are also fodmap friendly! The range can be found in Asda & Booth stores or online via Ocado, Real Foods and Simply Free.
Foods You Can is a great overall UK resource for anyone living with a food intolerance or allergy.
In the US, I have a grocery list to get you started!
I posted this info in my first UK post, but feels it bears repeating! If someone is looking for a dietitian to guide them in implementing the low FODMAP diet, how would they go about finding a skilled dietitian in the UK?
King’s College London holds an up to date record of UK and international dietitians that have undertaken their Professional Low Fodmap Course.
You can also search The British Dietetic Association Freelance Dietitian Group for private dietitians with an interest in IBS.
In the US, Patsy Catsos has an online FODMAP knowledgeable RD listing and I have one in the works….should be posted in the next week!
Emma, do you have any UK sites that you recommend for low FODMAP diet followers?
My Top 4 in no particular order!
Kings College London (FAQs)
Cook Low Fodmap (Recipes)
Two Dietitians Do The Fodmap Diet (Recipes, information & links to other great resources)
Clinical Alimentary (Recipes, information & links to other great resources)
My site Emma Carder Nutrition also has a few fodmap friendly posts as well e.g. gravy, scones & cookies
So there you have it! I can’t thank Emma enough for all the time she took to answer all of my questions! Hopefully this helps navigate the low FODMAP diet a bit easier whether you live in or travel to the US or UK!