Cassava flour is a popular alternative to all-purpose flour, as it is gluten-free and can be used in a wide variety of recipes. But the ultimate question – is cassava flour low FODMAP?
FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. These are short-chain carbohydrates that are generally believed by physicians to be difficult for the small intestine to absorb. This can lead to negative side effects for those suffering from bowel conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
You should only commence a FODMAP diet on instruction from your medical physician, after diagnosis with a bowel condition such as IBS.
Is Cassava Flour Low FODMAP?
Cassava flour is considered to be low FODMAP, providing that it’s served in a size of 15g or less.
It is therefore considered suitable for those that require a low FODMAP diet, however, we do suggest consulting with your doctor before trying cassava flour in case of any negative effects.
How cassava flour is made
Cassava flour is made from the root vegetable cassava. Cassava is rich in carbohydrates, and contains many key vitamins and minerals.
Cassava flour is made by grating the fibers of the cassava root, before being dehydrated and ground into a fine powder.
The result is a flour similar in texture to traditional wheat flour. It tends to have a neutral flavour with hints of nuttiness and earthy tones.
Another type of flour derived from the cassava vegetable is tapioca. Here’s more detail on tapioca flour.
Baking with cassava flour
Basking with cassava flour is extremely popular due to its gluten-free properties and similarities to all-purpose flour.
Cassava flour is a perfect gluten-free alternative to wheat flour and is also suitable for those following paleo diets as it is gluten-free, grain-free, and nut-free.
It has a significantly lower glycemic index of 46 in comparison with that of all-purpose flour which has a glycemic index of 85. This makes it the better option if you’re looking to control your blood sugar.
It’s best used in baking items such as cakes, cookies, crackers, and bread – however, it is a very high absorbency flour. This means that it may be best to start with two-thirds of the quantity you’d normally use of all-purpose flour and see how you go. You may need to use more wet ingredients such as egg as a binding agent due to the absorbency of cassava flour.
|Per 1 Cup Serving||Cassava Flour||All-Purpose Flour|
|Best for baking||Cakes, cookies, crackers, and bread||Non-yeast recipes (cookies, biscuits, some breads)|
Diets that suit cassava flour
There is a range of diets that are suitable for cassava flour. If you require a gluten-free diet, cassava flour is an excellent alternative to wheat flour as it doesn’t contain any gluten.
It’s also popular with those preferring a paleo diet. If you’re watching your weight/blood sugar levels, you’ll also like cassava flour as it has a low glycemic index of just 46. (Of course, if you’re looking for an even lower glycemic index, try almond flour.)
Unfortunately, cassava flour isn’t suitable for those following a keto diet due to its high levels of carbohydrates. Luckily we have many keto-friendly recipes on our blog.
The best keto-friendly flours include almond flour, coconut flour, and flaxseed meal. For more research, check out our in-depth explainer on all the major types of flour.
We’ve put together a few short frequently asked questions to help you better understand cassava flour and its dietary properties. Take a look below to view these FAQs.
Cassava flour is generally good for those suffering from IBS as it is gluten-free. It therefore shouldn’t provide any concerns if you are gluten-intolerant or have IBS.
As it has a light consistency and high fiber content, it can also help to promote good bacteria in the gut and reduce inflammation, both of which can be helpful for those with IBS.
Cassava flour is not inflammatory. In fact, it is an anti-inflammatory flour and contains high-resistant starch content which helps to nourish good bacteria in the digestive process. It has the potential to relieve inflammation and provide general benefits to the gut and digestive system.
Consuming cassava flour shouldn’t result in any bloating or gas. This is because it is made from the whole root of the cassava vegetable, and is therefore generally easily digestible.
If you’re finding that you’re noticing a link between cassava flour consumption and bloating, you may be using too much cassava flour in your recipes or you may be experiencing bacterial overgrowth in your digestion. We recommend speaking to a medical physician if you find bloating is a regular occurrence for you.
When eaten in moderation, there’s no reason I can imagine why cassava flour would cause you to experience digestive issues. It does not increase the change of gas in your digestive system and therefore shouldn’t result in bloating or negative factors for conditions such as IBS.
However, if cassava flour is overeaten, it may cause bloating as it is high in starch. It’s best to eat cassava flour in moderation to avoid any negative effects.
In my experience, cassava is very good for gut health in general, as it’s a great source of prebiotic fiber resistant starch, which is a key ingredient in supporting gut health and blood sugar management.
You’ll also find vitamin C present in cassava, which can promote immune function alongside the production of collagen.