Written by Amy Kaczor MS RD LDN, Registered Dietitian
Is maltodextrin a low FODMAP food?
FODMAPs, also known as fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols, are sugars not easily absorbed by the small intestine. Therefore, individuals who have been diagnosed with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) may experience worsened gastrointestinal symptoms, such as constipation or diarrhea, when consuming high FODMAP foods (Veloso, n.d.).
When reading a nutrition label, individuals on a low FODMAP diet are often puzzled by "maltodextrin", often found in the ingredients list of protein powders, sweetened drinks, candies, and desserts. Maltodextrin is a sweetener derived from starchy plants formed from glucose molecules (Jackson, n.d.). While maltodextrin is derived from wheat, a product not low in FODMAP, maltodextrin itself is low in FODMAP due to the way it is processed (Beyond Celiac, n.d.) and is considered appropriate in small amounts for those following the low FODMAP diet.
What are the health benefits of maltodextrin?
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) classifies maltodextrin as "GRAS", or "Generally Recognized As Safe" for human consumption. Maltodextrin, however, has also been associated with increased blood sugar levels, weight gain, and poor gut health. On the other hand, maltodextrin can be an excellent fuel for athletes, aid in digestive health, and reduce the risk of developing colon cancer (Kloss, 2021).
This post aims to answer your questions regarding the low FODMAP diet and maltodextrin as a low FODMAP food.
Stay tuned for more posts about low FODMAP foods. Also, check out our other pages for more information on managing digestive health.
Kirsten Jackson, Kavanagh, A., K. J. S., Paulette, & Diana. (2021, April 22). Which sweeteners are low fodmap? THE IBS DIETITIAN. Retrieved April 22, 2022, from https://thefoodtreatmentclinic.com/which-sweeteners-are-low-fodmap-dietitian-advice-for-ibs/#:~:text=Maltodextrin,on%20the%20low%20FODMAP%20diet.
Leaf Group. (n.d.). What is maltodextrin: Risks, benefits, uses and more. LIVESTRONG.COM. Retrieved April 22, 2022, from https://www.livestrong.com/article/502241-the-risks-of-maltodextrin/
The gluten-free diet. Beyond Celiac. (2021, February 24). Retrieved April 22, 2022, from https://www.beyondceliac.org/gluten-free-diet/
Veloso, H. G. (n.d.). FODMAP diet: What you need to know. Johns Hopkins Medicine. Retrieved April 19, 2022, from https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/fodmap-diet-what-you-need-to-know