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FODMAP Certification Logos

September 20,2020

Browsing supermarket shelves for the first time on the low FODMAP diet can be a daunting process – we know! At your last dietitian appointment, you would’ve received information on foods to reduce and those that can be eaten in larger amounts. But, putting this all into practice can be more complicated than it sounds, especially when it comes to grocery shopping. This is where FODMAP certification can take away the stress and uncertainty.

What are the certifications?

There are two major certifications for low FODMAP products. The Monash  FODMAP certification and the FODMAP Friendly certification. On the whole, food manufacturers apply for these certifications by having their products laboratory tested for FODMAP content. This ensures the product is low in all FODMAP groups at the specified serving size.

 

FODMAP Friendly

  • This is a registered certification trademark. Meaning it has rules and regulations that are approved by the ACCC here in Australia, and respective regulatory authorities in other countries around the world.
  • Products are currently tested  for FODMAPs at DTS Food Assurance, Australia’s largest NATA accredited food testing laboratory.
  • A product that displays the logo must have been laboratory tested in an approved laboratory, and proven to be below FODMAP cut offs at the serve size specified on the packet by the manufacturer.
  • The logo legally cannot be withheld from a product that passes testing, nor awarded to a product that does not pass testing.
  • An annual licensing fee is required to use the logo and covers testing and certification.
  • Products are retested yearly.
  • FODMAP Friendly list the products they have certified in their smartphone app.

 

Monash FODMAP

  • Monash developed the low FODMAP diet and tests foods as well as products in their own laboratory.
  • They own the Monash logo and can withhold or award the logo as they see fit. They are not bound by legal requirements, but have a reputation to uphold.
  • An annual licensing fee is required to use the logo and covers testing and certification.
  • Products are retested yearly.
  • Monash FODMAP lists products they have certified in their smartphone app.

 

So how do I know if a product is certified?

If a product is certified, one of the logos will usually be displayed prominently on the package. In addition the Monash FODMAP and FODMAP Friendly smartphone apps list products they have certified. If you see this, you can rest assured that “one serve” of the product is proven to be low in all FODMAP groups.

 

What about claims on packaging?

Your local supermarket can be a “creative” place for marketing, and it’s important not be persuaded by claims such as “tummy friendly” or “fructose friendly” which carry no weight. These claims are not regulated, meaning they are marketing statements and the product has not been certified as low FODMAP. That doesn’t mean the product is low FODMAP, nor does it mean the product isn’t low FODMAP. In either case, you’ll need to read the ingredients list in combination with your Monash FODMAP smartphone app. From this you can make an educated decision about whether you think the product is low FODMAP at the serving size you choose to eat. You can read more about how to interpret a label for FODMAPs here.

 

 

Hang on! I saw a certified product that contained a high FODMAP ingredient?

No need to stress if you see a product like this. If the product is certified, the testing process ensures that the product is below all FODMAP cut offs at the specified serving size, so you can still eat this serve on all phases of the low FODMAP diet, including the Elimination phase. It’s important to remember that it is a “Low” FODMAP diet, and not a “No” FODMAP diet. You will learn more about your individual tolerance and how far over FODMAP cut offs you can go as you move through the challenge phase of the FODMAP diet.

 

I’ve reacted to a certified food! What do I do?

This can happen for a few different reasons, the most common of which are discussed in this article. The gut can be fickle from time to time, it can be set off by stress and other gut irritants – think about fatty or spicy food, coffee and alcohol. Ultimately, if the reaction is a “one off”, make note of it and keep going. If it happens regularly, we recommend booking in to see one of our specialist FODMAP dietitians to troubleshoot.

 

 

Key points to keep in mind

  • The only certifications for low FODMAP products are the FODMAP Friendly and Monash FODMAP certifications. A product will be listed in the respective smartphone apps and will usually display the respective logo on the packet.
  • One “serve” (as listed on the packet) is laboratory tested and proven to be low FODMAP, however multiple “serves” may not be. Conversely, this doesn’t mean you need to limit yourself to the one serve either. Use your discretion and the ingredients list, to determine if the product is likely still low FODMAP at a larger serve.
  • Be wary of marketing claims that try to persuade you that the product is low FODMAP. If unsure, look for a certification logo, check the smartphone app or scan through the ingredients.
  • Products can be low FODMAP certified and also contain high FODMAP ingredients. In this case, stick to the suggested serving size and you’re good to go!

 

 

This article was written for Everyday Nutrition by William Antolasic APD.

William is a dietitian with a passion for all things gut health. If he isn’t whipping up a storm in the kitchen creating his next gluten free delight, you’ll find him hiking around the Yarra Valley’s beautiful landscapes. He is dedicated to providing you support with a smile and working together to find the best solution that suits you and your lifestyle. You can connect with William via Linked In or email him here.

 

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