Measuring Low FODMAP Foods

One thing that is often overlooked with low FODMAP recipe writers is the importance of portion size. With many foods, there are low and high FODMAP portion sizes. If we look at the Monash University Low FODMAP app for example, though almonds have a red light on them (meaning high FODMAP), if you click into it you will see that there’s actually a green light (or safe serving) at 10 nuts or 12 grams.

Zucchini is another example. You can see on the app that the safe portion is 1/3 cup or 65 grams. If you look in the notes, you will see that a serving greater than 85 grams is high in the Oligosaccharides (fructans). So it’s important not to exceed that amount if you know that you malabsorb fructans or are in the elimination phase of the diet.

My next point about measuring is that I recommend you get a food scale because there can be quite a variation in the volumetric measurement of a food vs its weight. Food scales are pretty low cost and well worth the investment. As an example, see this picture below of firm tofu. The safe serving size of firm tofu is ⅔ cup or 160 grams. But there’s definitely a discrepancy between the weight and measured amount as you can see. The tofu is in a ⅔ cup measuring cup, but to get to 160 grams (or almost 160 grams in this case), it is quite a bit more than can fit in that measuring cup. So you can eat more than the measured amount would have allowed you to believe! For accuracy sake, my suggestion is to always go by the weight in grams. But please don't stress out about this if you can't get or don't have a food scale. Just go by the standard measurement amount in that case.

It is also important to note the portion sizes in the Monash University FODMAP app are for the raw serving sizes unless otherwise stated in the app. For example, if you click into spaghetti squash, it specifies that a safe serving is 75 grams of the cooked food. It also states that larger servings of 450 grams (or 2 1/2 cups) contain moderate amounts of Oligos (Fructans and GOS).

If you are following the low FODMAP diet and are not experiencing as much relief as you would have liked, consider your portion sizes. Try measuring out your foods before cooking them and see if you notice an improvement!