If you are following a low-FODMAP diet, you might be wondering whether you can enjoy avocados without triggering symptoms like bloating and diarrhea.
Avocado is low-FODMAP in small portions of 30-grams or less (about ⅛ of a whole avocado). Larger amounts of avocado are high in sorbitol, a type of polyol.
In this article, we’ll go over the FODMAP content of various forms and portion sizes of avocados and discuss the best low-FODMAP avocado alternatives.
We use the Monash University FODMAP app to identify low-FODMAP foods. It is considered the best resource on FODMAPs, because it is updated frequently and includes information about portion sizes.
What are FODMAPs?
“FODMAP” is an acronym for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols (1).
FODMAPs are short-chain carbohydrates that can be quickly fermented by gut bacteria, potentially causing gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea in certain individuals.
There are five distinct categories of FODMAPs (2):
- Fructose: This is a type of sugar present in fruits, vegetables, and honey.
- Lactose: This is the natural sugar found in dairy products and milk.
- Fructans: Also known as “fructo-oligosaccharides” or “FOS”, these are carbohydrates found in many foods, including wheat.
- Galactans: Known as “galacto-oligosaccharides” or “GOS”, they are carbohydrates found in legumes like beans, lentils, and soy.
- Polyols: These are carbohydrates found naturally in fruits and vegetables, and they can also be used as artificial sweeteners. They are also referred to as “sugar alcohols.”
The low-FODMAP diet is frequently recommended for individuals with conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), and other digestive disorders.
This diet starts with a temporary elimination of high-FODMAP foods, followed by a gradual reintroduction of these foods to determine which FODMAP types trigger symptoms.
For those with IBS, adopting a low-FODMAP diet has been proven to significantly alleviate symptoms and enhance quality of life (3).
Is avocado low-FODMAP?
Avocado is low-FODMAP in portions of 30 grams or less. Larger servings are high in sorbitol, a type of FODMAP belonging to the polyol group.
If you are sensitive to sorbitol or are currently in the elimination phase of the low-FODMAP diet, consider avoiding avocados or reducing your serving size.
According to the Monash app, a low-FODMAP portion of avocado (30 grams) is equivalent to about one-eighth of a whole avocado.
However, avocados can vary widely in size — Florida avocados can weigh up to 3 times more than California (Hass) avocados, for example.
If you have a food scale, you might want to weigh your avocado (after removing the skin and seed) to make sure you’re not exceeding 30 grams.
Is avocado oil low-FODMAP?
Yes, avocado oil is low-fodmap. Avocado oil is entirely made up of fat, so it doesn’t contain any FODMAPs and can be safely consumed on a low-FODMAP diet (4).
With a neutral flavor and a smoke point of 520°F, avocado oil is a versatile cooking oil that’s great for roasting and grilling but also works well in salad dressings and baked goods (5).
How to enjoy avocado on a low-FODMAP diet
There are many ways you can enjoy small portions of avocado on a low-FODMAP diet.
1. On gluten-free toast
Avocado on toast is a simple, nutritious, and delicious meal that you can enjoy at any time of the day, even on a low-FODMAP diet.
Typically, avocado toast is made with ½ of a ripe avocado, mashed or sliced and spread over warm, toasted bread. To make a low-FODMAP version, you’ll need to use much less avocado — about 1/8th of the whole fruit — and gluten-free bread.
You may want to add some other ingredients to make your avocado toast more filling. Small portions of ricotta, cream cheese, or fresh mozzarella are low-FODMAP and pair well with avocado.
Want to level up your dish even more? Consider adding sea salt, a dash of lime, and chili flakes for a flavor boost. For a heartier meal, top it off with a poached egg or smoked salmon.
2. On salads and sandwiches
Avocados are a fantastic way to enhance the flavor and nutritional value of low-FODMAP salads and sandwiches.
For salads, try dicing 1/8th of an avocado and adding it to a mix of low-FODMAP vegetables, such as fresh spinach, carrots, and cucumbers.
The creamy texture of avocado pairs well with the crunch of vegetables, and its mild taste is a perfect canvas for dressings like balsamic vinaigrette or lemon olive oil.
To make a low-FODMAP sandwich, mash 1/8th of an avocado and spread it on your favorite bread — don’t forget to use gluten-free bread if you’re currently in the elimination phase of the diet or are sensitive to fructans.
Consider pairing avocado with turkey, chicken, or tuna and other low-FODMAP sandwich toppings, such as lettuce, tomato (1-2 slices), and Swiss cheese.
3. In dressings, sauces, and dips
Avocados, with their creamy texture and mild flavor, are an excellent addition to low-FODMAP dressings, sauces, and dips.
For dressings and sauces, consider blending ripe avocados with a low-FODMAP base like olive oil or lactose-free yogurt. Add herbs and spices, and a squeeze of lemon for extra flavor.
This type of dressing works great on salads or as a sauce for grilled chicken or fish. Just remember to keep your serving size small (1-2 tablespoons), to avoid eating more than 30 grams of avocado.
For dips, combine mashed avocado with cream cheese, lactose-free yogurt, or tahini, and season with salt, pepper, and cilantro. Limit your portion size to around ¼ cup to keep it low-FODMAP.
Low-FODMAP avocado alternatives
If you’re following a low-FODMAP diet, you may be wondering if there are any low-FODMAP alternatives to avocados.
Avocados have a creamy, buttery texture and a mild nutty, grassy flavor that can’t truly be replicated. However, here are several low-FODMAP alternatives that can be used in similar ways.
1. Nut butters
Certain nut butters can be a convenient, low-FODMAP swap for avocado when you’re looking for something simple to spread on crackers or toast.
Try peanut butter (2 tablespoons), almond butter (1 tablespoon), or sunflower butter (2 tablespoons) for a tasty low-FODMAP alternative to avocados.
2. Soft cheeses
With their creamy texture and rich taste, soft cheeses are ideal low-FODMAP substitutes for avocado on toast or in salads and sandwiches.
Many different soft cheeses are low-FODMAP in servings of 2 tablespoons or less, including ricotta, goat cheese, cottage cheese, cream cheese, and fresh mozzarella.
Mayonnaise may not have avocado’s distinctive green color or earthy flavor, but it can still be an excellent low-FODMAP alternative when making sandwiches, salad dressings, and dips.
Because it doesn’t contain any high-FODMAP ingredients, mayonnaise is considered a low-FODMAP food at any serving size.
4. Firm tofu
Firm tofu can be an excellent low-FODMAP alternative to avocado due to its mild flavor and adaptable texture. You can use tofu as a base for dips or fry it for use in sandwiches and salads.
Servings sizes of 1 cup (170 grams) of firm tofu are low-FODMAP, while larger portions are moderately high in fructans.
Avoid silken tofu, which is only low-FODMAP in very small amounts (39 grams or less). It is high in both fructans and galactans in larger servings.
Like avocado, edamame have a vibrant green color and somewhat creamy texture when mashed, making them great for spreading on toast, sprinkling over salads, or even blending into dips.
Edamame are low-FODMAP in servings of ½ cup. Larger portions (more than 1 cup) contain a moderate amount of fructans.
Navigating the world of low-FODMAP can be tricky when it comes to foods like avocados. At a typical serving size (½ an avocado), they’re high in sorbitol, a type of FODMAP in the polyol group.
However, you can still enjoy the creamy goodness of avocados in smaller, low-FODMAP portions of 30 grams or less (about 1/8th of a whole avocado).
If you’d rather avoid avocado altogether, there are plenty of low-FODMAP alternatives, from nut butters to soft cheeses, mayonnaise to firm tofu, and even edamame.
With these options at hand, you can keep your meals exciting while staying within the low-FODMAP guidelines.
Amy Richter is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based in Missouri. She is an experienced nutrition writer and medical advisor for Healthline and Medical News Today. Amy is passionate about all things food-related and enjoys translating complex science into easy-to-understand articles.