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Are Tortilla Chips Low FODMAP? (Surprise!)

A low FODMAP diet is particularly beneficial for people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). 

This is because this kind of dietary plan limits the consumption of indigestible, fermentable carbs that tend to worsen the symptoms of IBS.

Still, many foods, including snacks, are allowed on this diet, as long as you practice moderation. 

For example, many people can’t imagine living without having some chips from time to time, including tortilla chips.

So, are tortilla chips low or high in FODMAPs? Can you eat them if you suffer from IBS?

Are Tortilla Chips Low FODMAP?

Tortilla chips and most other corn-based products are low in FODMAPs. So, you can include them on a low FODMAP diet as long as you do so in moderation. That way, you can still enjoy your favorite foods without triggering any IBS-related symptoms.

In addition, tortilla chips contain some nutrients like fiber, manganese, and phosphorus, among others. 

So, while chips aren’t exactly a healthy food, you are getting some benefits from this snack.

How low in FODMAPs are tortilla chips?

For most people, tortilla chips should be OK on a low FODMAP diet. Still, aim for a serving of 28 grams or one small packet. 

Tortilla chips do contain FODMAPs, which is why keeping the portion sizes small is crucial.

While tortilla foods get a pass, they still contain some fructans and galactans – two FODMAPs that trigger IBS symptoms. 

So, it’s important to stick to the above-mentioned serving size to avoid any unpleasant symptoms.

Can you eat tortilla chips on a low FODMAP diet?

According to research, tortilla chips get a pass on a low FODMAP diet. This means that they do contain these indigestible, fermentable carbs, so make sure to limit your consumption of these chips.

The safest serving is about 28 grams or one small packet. In this amount, eating tortilla chips shouldn’t trigger any IBS-related symptoms. 

Also, remember that this serving goes for plain, salted tortilla chips and doesn’t include any dips or sauces that people often use.

These can be high in FODMAPs and other triggering substances, so be sure to check whether they’re suitable for a low FODMAP diet before eating them.

When eating tortilla chips with dips, try not to take too much of the dip to avoid consuming too many calories in one sitting.

Generally, cheesy dips and guacamole are low in FODMAPs as long as they don’t contain garlic or onions. 

So, be sure to check the ingredients or make them yourself to know exactly what you’re putting into your body.

For example, homemade guacamole is not only healthier and lower in FODMAPs but also more nutritious, provided you’re using low-FODMAP ingredients. 

Are flavored tortilla chips low in FODMAPs?

Most flavored tortilla chips contain a lot more sodium and, in a lot of cases, also carbs. So this increases the risk that flavored tortilla chips are higher in FODMAPs than plain chips, depending on the brand.

It’s also best to avoid flavors like garlic and onion or sour cream. These are high in FODMAPs and often contain ingredients that can trigger IBS symptoms, especially in people who are very sensitive to FODMAPs.

So, if you want to include tortilla chips on your diet, stick with plain, salted varieties. If possible, you may even want to go for unsalted kinds, which can help you decrease the amount of salt you’re taking in. 

Are tortilla chips good for you?

Generally, there’s nothing too healthy about tortilla chips. They’re high in calories – a single one-ounce serving contains 138 calories, which is a lot. 

Most of these calories come from carbs and fat.

But while they’re high in calories, they make for a better choice than potato chips. Tortilla chips are lower in calories and fat, so you might be able to consume more even if you’re trying to lose weight.

Tortilla chips also tend to contain quite a lot of sodium in a single serving. Too much dietary sodium can raise your blood pressure, increasing your risk of heart attacks and strokes. 

So, it’s best to avoid eating too many sodium-rich foods.

What’s more, some brands of tortilla chips might contain trans fats. This kind of fat is very harmful to your health. 

Studies show that it raises the levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol while decreasing the levels of the ‘good’ kind. It can also trigger inflammation in your body.

Because of that, always read the nutritional label before purchasing any food.

In addition, research shows that frequently consuming processed foods (like tortilla chips) raises your risk of several health conditions, including heart disease but also premature death.

Tortilla chips can definitely be a part of a healthy diet but make sure to stick to small portions and choose plain varieties to stay as healthy as possible.

Tortilla chips are also lower in nutrients than potato chips. Tortilla chips contain small amounts of some nutrients, including phosphorus, magnesium, and manganese, though.

Phosphorus is crucial for building and maintaining strong teeth, filtering waste out in your kidneys, and producing DNA. 

Because of that, it’s important to include phosphorus-rich foods in your diet.

On the other hand, manganese helps your body form connective tissue, bones, blood-clotting factors, and sex hormones. 

As a result, getting enough manganese ensures normal brain function as well as prevents bone fractures and osteoporosis.

Magnesium is important for the health of your immune system. It also supports healthy blood sugar levels and promotes heart health.

So, you can get some good benefits from tortilla chips – just make sure to eat them as part of a healthy, balanced diet and don’t overdo it.

Conclusion

Tortilla chips get a pass when it comes to FODMAPs. So, you can safely include them in your diet without triggering any IBS symptoms. 

Still, stick to the recommended serving, as they do contain FODMAPs. So, it’s important not to overdo it.

What’s more, tortilla chips contain small amounts of several nutrients. So, while they are mostly empty of any real nutrition, you can get some benefits from snacking on them as part of a balanced diet.

Sources: Nutrition Data, Harvard Health Publishing, and National Library of Medicine