Guest post by: Jillian Smith, Nutrition Student at the University of New Hampshire and Intern
The FODMAPS elimination diet may seem difficult for vegetarians. Foods commonly consumed by many vegetarians, such as soy products, milk, and legumes are not allowed during the primary phase of the diet. Not only do these foods make up a large portion of the vegetarian diet, but they are also typically high in protein. Vegetarians may wonder how to consume enough protein. However, there are many foods included in the FODMAPS elimination diet that are allowed and provide plenty of protein to the diet. Don't let confusion or worry slow you down. The following list of do's and don'ts will help navigate vegetarians embarking on this diet.
- Choose vegetarian high protein, low FODMAPs foods: quinoa, green peas, spinach, nuts, nut butters, seeds, seed butters.
- Make a large batch of seitan and add it to any meal. It works in casseroles, stir fries, or on the grill. It freezes well, too. (Note: seitan contains wheat gluten--in fact it IS wheat gluten.)
- Use lactose-free dairy products instead of other dairy substitutes. Lactose-free milk contains about 8 grams of protein per 8 oz. serving. Lactose-free cottage cheese is another great source of protein containing about 12 grams of protein per half cup serving.
- Eat breakfast for dinner. Cook up your favorite egg dishes and serve them for dinner. Its a fun way to incorporate this high protein food into your diet.
- Read labels! Get familiar with food labels of your favorite foods. Find higher protein alternatives.
- Get creative! Try new and different combinations. Adding new flavorings to dishes will help you forget the absent foods.
- Rely on almond or rice milk for protein. They have only a 1-2 grams of protein per 8 fluid ounce serving.
- Stay on the elimination phase for more than two weeks. You need to liberalize your diet sooner than meat-eaters in order to get adequate nutrients.
- Don't over think it. The FODMAPS elimination diet will be easier with a clear and relaxed mind.