Protein is an important nutrient needed for so many functions in the body like making up the hemoglobin that carries oxygen in the blood and providing structure to muscles, to name a few. And according to the National Academy of Medicine, the average adult needs a minimum of about 7 grams of protein per twenty pounds. Therefore, when you’re following the low FODMAP diet, it’s important not to forget to add protein to meals as well as snacks. Let’s take a look at some ways you can add protein to your low FODMAP diet snack times.
Low FODMAP protein foods
The low FODMAP diet includes a variety of high protein foods from animal products to dairy products as well as certain vegetables. Here are some of those foods that you can use to create high-protein snacks with the Monash University-approved serving sizes in parentheses.
- Unprocessed meat, poultry, and seafood like beef, chicken, lamb, eggs, pork, fish, shrimp, tuna, or sardines (meat does not contain carbohydrates, so is free of FODMAPs; be sure not to season with any high FODMAP food products or seasonings)
- Cheese (2 ounces of cheeses such as Monterey Jack, Cheddar, Colby style, Mozzarella, or Swiss)
- Soy milk (1 cup; made from soy protein, not soybeans)
- Vegetables like broccoli (3/4 cup), spinach (1.5 cups baby spinach or 2 cups English spinach), grape tomatoes (5 pieces), or kale (1/2 cup chopped)
- Nuts and seeds like almonds (10 nuts), peanuts (32 nuts), pumpkin seeds (2 tablespoons), walnuts (10 nut halves), or chia seeds (2 tablespoons) as well as peanut butter (2 tablespoons)
- Low FODMAP protein powder like the vanilla and chocolate low FODMAP protein powders from Casa de Sante
Low FODMAP high protein snack ideas
Using the foods listed above, as well as other low FODMAP foods, you can create the following high protein, low FODMAP snacks. All nutrition information provided by the USDA Nutrient Database.
- 1 piece of gluten-free bread with 1 tablespoon peanut butter (about 5 grams protein)
- 32 peanuts (about 7 grams protein)
- ¾ cup steamed broccoli (4.2 grams protein) with or without 1 oz melted cheddar cheese on top (7 grams protein) = together they can provide 11.2 grams protein
- Hard-boiled eggs (about 6 grams protein per egg)
- 1 oz mozzarella cheese (8 grams protein) and one medium orange (1-gram protein) = together they provide 9 grams protein
- Sardines (3.75 ounce can of sardines provides about 23 grams protein)
- 1 scoop of Casa de Sante low FODMAP protein powder mixed with water or 1 cup unsweetened almond milk provides about 27.5 grams protein; prepare protein shake using 1 cup soy milk made from soy protein to add an additional 8 grams of protein
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds (5 grams protein)
In addition to these snack ideas, you can also pair an ounce of any of the low FODMAP cheeses with a serving of a low FODMAP fruit or vegetable like ¾ cup raw broccoli, 1 medium carrot peeled and sliced, or 10 medium fresh strawberries to create a balanced and high protein, low FODMAP. Also, you can throw a tablespoon of chia seeds into your protein shake or sprinkle them on a slice of gluten-free bread with 1 tablespoon peanut butter to add an additional 2.35 grams protein to such snack ideas.
Take home message
Even though the low FODMAP diet restricts some fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, there are plenty of high-protein foods to go around. This makes it much easier for you to meet your daily protein needs when following the low FODMAP diet, even during snack time. Therefore, with a little prep time and creativity, you can fulfill your protein requirements each day while keeping your gut happy on the low FODMAP diet.
-written by Staci Gulbin, MS, MEd, RDN of LighttrackNutrition.com