If you’re looking for a low FODMAP protein source that is easy to prepare and delicious, salmon may be the answer. But is salmon actually low FODMAP? The answer is not as straightforward as you might think.
What is the low FODMAP diet?
The low FODMAP diet is a dietary approach that has been shown to be effective in managing symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). FODMAPs are fermentable carbohydrates that can be poorly absorbed in the small intestine, leading to symptoms such as bloating, gas, and abdominal pain for people with IBS. The low FODMAP diet involves avoiding foods that are high in FODMAPs for a period of time, and then gradually reintroducing them to see which ones can be tolerated without triggering symptoms.
What are FODMAPs?
FODMAPs are a group of carbohydrates that are not well-absorbed in the small intestine, which can lead to symptoms such as bloating, gas, and abdominal pain. The term FODMAP is an acronym for:
Examples of high-FODMAP foods include:
- And more
Is salmon low FODMAP?
The short answer is yes, salmon is low FODMAP. However, there are some important caveats to keep in mind.
Fresh vs. canned salmon
While fresh salmon is low FODMAP, canned salmon can be higher in FODMAPs due to added ingredients like onion or garlic powder. If you’re on a low FODMAP diet, be sure to check the ingredients list on any canned salmon you buy.
Like any food, the FODMAP content of salmon can vary depending on the serving size. According to Monash University, a serving size of 1/2 cup canned salmon is low FODMAP, while a serving size of 3/4 cup canned salmon is high FODMAP due to onion powder in the ingredients.
The way you prepare salmon can also affect its FODMAP content. For example, cooking salmon with garlic or onion could make it higher in FODMAPs. If you’re on a low FODMAP diet, look for recipes that use low FODMAP ingredients to prepare salmon.
Health benefits of salmon
Whether you’re following a low FODMAP diet or not, salmon is a nutritious choice that can provide a range of health benefits. Here are just a few:
- High in omega-3 fatty acids, which can improve heart health, reduce inflammation, and promote brain health.
- A good source of protein, which is important for building and repairing tissues.
- Rich in vitamins and minerals like vitamin D, vitamin B12, and selenium.
Low FODMAP salmon recipe ideas
Looking for inspiration on how to incorporate salmon into your low FODMAP diet? Here are a few recipe ideas:
Salmon and quinoa salad
This salad features grilled or baked salmon, quinoa, and a variety of low FODMAP veggies, like cucumber, lettuce, and carrot. Top with a low FODMAP dressing and enjoy!
Swap out the traditional beef patty for a salmon patty in your favorite burger recipe. Serve on a low FODMAP bun or lettuce wrap, and top with low FODMAP condiments like mayo, ketchup, or mustard.
Baked salmon with low FODMAP veggies
Bake salmon in the oven with low FODMAP veggies like zucchini, bell pepper, and green beans. Season with low FODMAP herbs and spices, like parsley, basil, or rosemary.
Salmon can be a delicious and nutritious addition to a low FODMAP diet, as long as you keep a few key factors in mind, like the serving size and preparation method. If you’re unsure if salmon is a good choice for your low FODMAP diet, consult with a registered dietitian who specializes in digestive health.
- Is smoked salmon low FODMAP? It can be, but it depends on the ingredients. Be sure to check the label and avoid smoked salmon that contains high FODMAP ingredients like garlic or onion powder.
- Can I have salmon on the elimination phase of the low FODMAP diet? Yes, fresh salmon is low FODMAP and can be included in the elimination phase of the diet. Canned salmon may be higher in FODMAPs, so check the label carefully.
- Is salmon sushi low FODMAP? It can be, as long as the sushi filling doesn’t contain high FODMAP ingredients like avocado, pickled ginger, or high-FODMAP sauces. Stick to low FODMAP sushi fillings like cucumber or cooked salmon, and avoid soy sauce or use a low FODMAP alternative.
- Can I eat salmon skin on a low FODMAP diet? Yes, salmon skin is low FODMAP and can be enjoyed on a low FODMAP diet. Just be sure to avoid any seasoning that contains high FODMAP ingredients.
- Is canned wild salmon low FODMAP? It can be, as long as it doesn’t contain high FODMAP ingredients like onion or garlic powder. Check the label to be sure.
1. Tuck, C. J., Muir, J. G., & Gibson, P. R. (2019). Dietary interventions in irritable bowel syndrome: current evidence and emerging mechanisms. Current opinion in pharmacology, 49, 17-24.
2. Monash University. (2019). Low FODMAP Diet App.