At first glance, a person might think that since gluten is limited on a low FODMAP regimen, that all bread is off-limits. Fortunately, if you enjoy a good sandwich or slice of toast, you’ll be happy to know that this is not true. In fact, besides the specifically branded gluten-free breads in health food markets, sourdough bread can also be enjoyed by those following a low FODMAP lifestyle. Let’s learn a little more about sourdough bread, and how you can enjoy it while staying on track with your low FODMAP regimen.
What is sourdough bread?
Sourdough bread is a type of bread made with wild yeast and bacteria that is allowed to ferment. Not only does this fermentation process give sourdough bread its distinctive sour taste, but it also makes it easier to digest. This is because the longer fermentation process, which can be about 12 hours or more, helps break down some of the FODMAPs, like fructan found in wheat, that can make some breads hard on the gut.
According to Monash University, those sourdough breads made with spelt flour can be especially easy on the gut for those with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This is because the flour from spelt, or hulled wheat, is naturally lower in fructans and gluten.
Sourdough bread and FODMAPs
The following servings of sourdough bread products are considered low FODMAP according to Monash University.
- 52 grams, or 2 slices, of sourdough spelt bread with a high percentage of spelt
- 109 grams, or 2 slices of white wheat sourdough bread
- 97 grams, or 2 slices of whole meal sourdough wheat bread
- 26 grams, or one slice of sourdough oat bread
- 82 grams, or 2 slices of 100% spelt sourdough bread
- 70 grams, or 2 slices of gluten-free rice flour sourdough bread
It is important to note that each type of sourdough bread will vary in weight per slice. Therefore, note the type of bread you choose and go by the gram measurement for low FODMAP serving size. Also, be sure that the sourdough bread you choose does not contain any high FODMAP ingredients like honey, high fructose corn syrup, agave syrup, sugar alcohols, dried fruits like raisins, or flavorings like onion or garlic, to name a few.
How to enjoy sourdough bread
Besides sandwiches, sourdough bread can be enjoyed in many ways. One way is to create a bruschetta recipe by toasting sourdough bread slices and topping with low FODMAP sauces like marinara or chunky tomato salsa.
You can also create your very own low FODMAP croutons with sourdough bread. Just dice some sourdough bread into small pieces and allow to become stale by placing in a 350-degree Fahrenheit oven for about 15 to 20 minutes. Then, after bread pieces cool, coat lightly in some olive oil and sprinkle in some low FODMAP seasonings like Italian Tuscan Herb mix by Casa de Sante. Finally, spread bread pieces on a cookie sheet pan and bake once again in the oven for 350 degrees Fahrenheit for another 15 minutes or until slightly browned. You can toss these croutons on salad or use as a topping on low FODMAP soups like ZenGut tomato oregano soup.
Take home message
Even though you must follow a low FODMAP lifestyle, you can still enjoy delicious bread options like sourdough bread. This uniquely flavored bread can be enjoyed without digestive distress as long as it is consumed in moderation, and if the bread product you choose does not contain any high FODMAP ingredients. Check out the Casa de Sante shopping list for other low FODMAP ingredients you can use to create delicious, gut-friendly dishes for your meals and snacks.
-written by Staci Gulbin, MS, MEd, RD of LighttrackNutrition.com