According to a lot of research, a low FODMAP diet is incredibly beneficial for people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
This is because this diet helps control the symptoms of this condition by limiting how many indigestible carbs you’re consuming.
A lot of foods contain FODMAPs, but there are also many that you can safely eat on a diet low in these carbohydrates.
There are also many snacks that are allowed on this diet, including potato chips. But how low in FODMAPs are potato chips?
Are Potato Chips Low FODMAP?
Potato chips are a savory snack that’s allowed on a diet low in FODMAPs. Since potatoes are almost FODMAP-free, potato chips are also a safe food for people with IBS and several other digestive system issues.
While generally potato chips aren’t considered healthy, there are some varieties that are quite nutritious.
If you choose these, you can get a lot of health benefits from potatoes as well as enjoy a great snack.
How low in FODMAPs are potato chips?
Potato chips are made with potatoes – a nearly FODMAP-free food. A safe serving size is about ½ of a small packet of chips (about 50 grams). In this amount, potato chips are safe for people with IBS.
Also, make sure not to exceed this serving since potato chips tend to be high in fat and sodium – two nutrients that can lead to inflammation in your digestive system. So, be careful and measure your serving sizes carefully.
Can you eat potato chips on a low FODMAP diet?
Potato chips are allowed on a low FODMAP diet as long as you practice moderation. The safest serving size is about 50 grams, which is often ½ of a small packet. In this serving, potato chips shouldn’t trigger any IBS-related issues.
Still, keep in mind that potato chips are high in fat. In fact, the above-mentioned serving provides you with 29% of your daily need for fat, which is a lot.
Fat is harder for your stomach to digest than other macronutrients. So, if you already suffer from IBS, you may want to limit your intake of high-fat foods as much as possible.
Potato chips are also high in calories, which means that eating too many of them can lead to weight gain.
Studies show that weight gain is closely linked with more severe IBS symptoms.
So, try to avoid that and follow a primarily healthy diet with lots of veggies, fruits, and whole grains instead.
Are flavored potato chips low in FODMAPs?
Generally, flavored potato chips are OK on a low FODMAP diet as long as you stick to a small serving.
However, it might be best to avoid varieties with garlic and onion, as these two ingredients are high in FODMAPs.
While the flavoring in potato chips may not be high in FODMAPs, it’s still best to stay on the safe side and choose plain potato chips, especially the baked kind.
Luckily, there are many options on the market that allow you to indulge in some chips without worsening your IBS symptoms.
In fact, many popular brands offer plain, salted chips, so choose these.
Are potato chips good for you?
There are some health benefits to eating potato chips, but they’re still very high in calories and fat.
A serving of 50 grams of potato chips contains 274 calories, most of which come from fat.
Because of that, eating too many potato chips too often can lead to weight gain. So, try avoiding that and only have some as a treat from time to time.
Potato chips are also very high in sodium. While this mineral is important in moderation, getting too much dietary sodium can raise your blood pressure.
This increases your risk of heart attacks and strokes, so you should avoid that.
What’s more, the cooking process used to make potato chips drastically decreases their nutrient content.
The potatoes need to be washed, soaked, and then deep-fried. This flushes out a lot of nutrients, making potato chips high in calories but low in nutrients.
As a result, you’re basically consuming empty calories with no nutritional value.
The cooking process also produces harmful byproducts and substances that are bad for your health in many ways.
These substances can increase your risk of heart disease, cancer, premature death, and various other health conditions.
Since chips are also very high in fat, they can slow down digestion, worsening digestive system issues like IBS or acid reflux.
So, try to limit your intake of this snack if you suffer from any of these.
On the bright side, choosing oven-baked varieties can bring you some benefits. Firstly, potato chips are an excellent source of potassium.
This mineral helps offset the negative effects of sodium on your blood pressure. It’s also responsible for fluid balance in your body since it acts as an electrolyte.
Potato chips also contain some B vitamins, including vitamin B6, niacin, pantothenic acid, and several more.
These are important for various bodily processes, such as mood management, nutrient absorption, metabolism, and many more.
Potato chips also contain some fiber, but you’d have to eat a lot of them in one sitting to get any decent amount of this nutrient.
Regardless, fiber can aid in healthy digestion and increase the feeling of fullness after eating.
Because of that, try choosing potato chips with a high fiber content whenever possible.
So, while potato chips aren’t the healthiest food out there, it’s good to know that they do contain some nutrients.
In moderation, you can safely enjoy some potato chips even if you suffer from IBS and follow a low FODMAP diet. But make sure to be careful with the portion sizes, as too many can cause digestive system problems.
If you consume some potato chips, you can get some minerals and vitamins from them as well. But this mostly applies to oven-baked, plain chips rather than oily chips that contain a lot of added ingredients.
So, keep that in mind when choosing potato chips.
Alicia is the senior content editor and writer here at Food FAQ. She has extensive experience with acid reflux, heartburn, GERD, and various supplements. When not eating food for “research”, she’s watching “Friends” for the 100th time.