FODMAP and Beans

FODMAP and Beans
(Last Updated On: February 24, 2021)

As mentioned in my FODMAP chili sin carne recipe, beans and legumes are super healthy, but quite difficult to eat on the FODMAP diet. Luckily most beans have allowed portion sizes within the FODMAP diet. So read on for your best information on FODMAP and Beans!

Health Benefits of Beans

If you don’t follow the FODMAP diet, it does not really matter what beans you decide on eating, basically, all of them are healthy! Whether you eat lentils, mung beans, white or brown beans all are the best for your health.

Beans are high in protein, which renders them a great vegetarian protein source instead of meat. Having no meat for a day is great for the environment and for your health (read more about that in my article about meat). A vegetarian food pattern helps lower the chances of heart disease. And beans, in general, have properties to reduce your LDL-cholesterol. Other than that, they are packed with fiber, B-vitamins, iron, and calcium. That’s a healthy deal!

FODMAP and Beans

Not all FODMAP’s are present in beans. The main FODMAP content in beans is the oligosaccharides, and more precisely GOS. The oligosaccharide group is split up into fructooligosaccharides (FOS) and galactooligosaccharides (GOS) and those 2 can certainly have a different outcome on your gut issues.
It can actually be, that you react to GOS and not to FOS. And the other way around. So always challenge your FODMAP’s to make sure you’re not leaving out products you can actually eat. And do make sure you eat beans if you know you’re intolerant to either fructose, polyols or lactose and not the oligosaccharides. Because beans won’t hurt you then.

I could go into a very in-depth explanation of the difference between GOS and FOS. But since that has a lot to do with chemistry, I’ll leave the specifics out. In short, it has all to do with the way the body digests certain molecules. You need different enzymes to break down GOS than you need with FOS.

The good thing about all FODMAP’s is that they are all water-soluble. This means that FODMAP’s leech out into the water, and you can actually use this to your advantage! Make sure to properly drain your beans and rinse them after draining. This way you will wash away most of the FODMAP’s that have leeched into the water, and this helps keep your belly calm.

Are you having difficulties doing the FODMAP diet all by yourself and would you like guidance from a specialized dietitian? Schedule an online consultation at my online dietitian practice Darm diëtist, and I will help you with all your questions!

Portion Sizes of FODMAP Beans

As mentioned, canned and drained beans have a lower FODMAP content than boiled ones. So I have only listed the boiled and drained beans since you can have more of those! With the amounts listed below, be aware of FODMAP stacking. FODMAP stacking can happen if you use multiple types of beans in one meal and they all contain GOS. This way you can actually reach your tolerance limit by ingesting too much of the FODMAP. This rule also applies to all the other FODMAP’s, so be aware of the stacking.

The portions listed below are listed as provided by the Monash University.

Beans (use canned, then drain and rinse!)Portion size
Adzuki Beans38 grams
Black Beans40 grams
Butter Beans35 grams
Chickpeas42 grams
Edamame90 grams
Garbanzo Beans42 grams
Lentils46 grams
Lentils, Green23 grams
Lentils, Red23 grams
Lima Beans39 grams
Mungbeans53 grams
Mungbeans, sprouted95 grams

So as you can see, most beans are suitable for the FODMAP diet at around 40 grams. And some even higher around 95 grams! Try to add a variety of the beans to your diet to not miss out on their health benefits!

Have you been eating beans on the FODMAP diet? What is your experience with it? Let me know!

8 thoughts on “FODMAP and Beans”

    • Hey Rita,
      Thank you for your question. It really depends on the type of beans you want to be using. Some are low FODMAP when sprouted, others aren’t.
      I suggest you check the Monash University FODMAP app for those specifics!

      Happy holidays!

  • I use mostly dry beans and not canned but they are properly soaked and cooked. Many suggest canned beans for FODMAP but aren’t home cooked just fine?

    • Hey there, home-cooked can definitely be fine. It really matters to soak and cook and drain the beans well. FODMAPs are water-soluble and in general, the canned beans are soaked longer, since they are kept in the can. So I’d advise being careful with it, and thoroughly (and long) soak and rinse.

  • Hi Manon,
    What about runner beans (snijbonen)? They are not listed in the Monash app. Do you know if they are safe to eat, when on a Fodmap diet?
    Thanks, Judy

    • Hey Judy, if they are not listed in the FODMAP app, then we’re out of luck….. They haven’t been tested. I would guess them to be similar to snow peas since they both belong to the beans family. But no certainty there. If you know your triggers already (have completed FODMAP). I’d say just give it a try. Start with a small portion and slowly build it up, just like you would in the reintroduction phase. Hope this helps!

    • Hey there, thanks for your message. Boiled Navy beans have been tested and have come out as not suitable for the low FODMAP diet, unfortunately. So I’d say the same for canned/rinsed ones. If you know your specific FODMAP intolerances already you might be able to eat them since they contain only GOS and fructans.

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