Buckwheat flour is often used as an alternative to wheat flour, as it’s grain-free, gluten-free, and offers a nutty flavor to different dishes. But the question on everyone’s lips is whether buckwheat is low FODMAP.
FODMAP is an abbreviation for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. Don’t worry if you’re confused – we were at first too! These are short-chain carbohydrates that can be difficult for some people to digest, as the small intestine isn’t always able to absorb them. If you are a sufferer or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or coeliac disease, you may seek a low FODMAP diet to help combat more difficult symptoms.
We would only recommend seeking a low FODMAP diet if you’ve been instructed to by a medical physician.
So is buckwheat flour low FODMAP?
The good news is that buckwheat is considered to be a low-FODMAP food product! This is super helpful for people that require a low FODMAP diet such as those that have been diagnosed with IBS.
It’s important to note however that buckwheat flour is only low FODMAP if it’s eaten in appropriate quantities. Sticking to no more than 2/3 of a cup of buckwheat flour should ensure that your diet remains low FODMAP.
Again, we don’t wish to repeat ourselves but it’s vital to liaise with your medical physician before adding buckwheat flour to your diet, especially if you have gut sensitivities.
How buckwheat flour is made
Buckwheat flour is made from buckwheat seeds, which are harvested from the buckwheat plant. To make buckwheat flour, the seeds are ground down to produce a fine, flour-like consistency.
It can be made at home if you have a blender/food processor, however, most large retailers will regularly stock buckwheat flour. You may also find it in health shops as it’s a form of gluten-free flour.
Once it’s been ground down, buckwheat flour may contain small black flecks. It can be refined further to produce a more similar appearance to all-purpose flour if desired.
Baking with buckwheat flour
Buckwheat has become very popular in recent years with modern bakers due to its gluten-free properties. It’s a fantastic gluten-free alternative to all-purpose flour, making it great for those suffering from gluten intolerances.
It also has a very low glycemic index of between 30 – 35 (depending on its origin), which makes it ideal if you’re closely monitoring your blood sugar levels, e.g. conditions such as diabetes. Make sure to check with your physician before adding buckwheat flour to your diet as a diabetic.
You can use buckwheat flour to make all kinds of delicious baked goods including pancakes, cookies, muffins, and waffles, as well as different types of gluten-free bread such as chia bread and banana bread. If you’re interested in learning more about the specifics of buckwheat flour in baking along with other types of flour, check out our blog for an analysis of 52 different types of flour!
|Per 1 Cup Serving||Buckwheat Flour||All-Purpose Flour|
|Glycemic Index||Between 30 – 35||85|
|Best for baking||Pancakes, chia bread, banana bread, muffins, pasta, cookies, waffles||Non-yeast recipes (cookies, biscuits, some breads)|
Diets that suit buckwheat flour
Buckwheat flour is suited to many different types of diets. The most prevalent is probably a gluten-free diet, as buckwheat flour is a well-known gluten-free alternative to wheat flour.
It’s also suitable for those following the paleo diet, as buckwheat is technically a pseudo-grain. Grains are restricted from the paleo diet, however, where buckwheat isn’t technically a grain it would be considered as a suitable flour for those following the paleo diet.
However, it does contain a high amount of carbohydrates (84g per 1 cup serving), so it would therefore not be suitable for those following the keto diet or other low-carb diets. A better keto-friendly alternative to buckwheat flour is coconut flour – check out our keto bread recipe that only requires 5 ingredients!
Buckwheat flour is good for those suffering from IBS as it’s gluten-free, and therefore a great alternative to wheat flour. It’s low FODMAP and has a very similar flavor to wholemeal wheat making it a great substitute for all-purpose flour. Another type of flour suitable for those with IBS is coconut flour. Check out our blog for a comparison of coconut flour and buckwheat flour!
Buckwheat flour is suitable for those suffering from Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), and it can in fact help to minimize unpleasant symptoms. You will need to stick to small amounts of buckwheat flour and build up gradually to ensure your symptoms are not exacerbated – check with your medical physician first before adding buckwheat flour to your diet if you suffer from SIBO.
Buckwheat flour is not considered to be inflammatory. In fact, it may reduce inflammation due to it being a good source of bioactive components. It also contains phytochemicals, rutin, and quercetin, all of which reduce inflammation.
Buckwheat flour shouldn’t cause bloating provided it’s eaten in appropriate quantities. If it’s consumed in large amounts it would be considered high FODMAP and may cause unpleasant side effects such as bloating and excess gas.
While buckwheat does directly heal the gut, it can contribute to the promotion of good bacteria in the gut as it has prebiotic properties. This means that good bacteria are nourished, making it a great option for good gut health.