Coconut milk is fast becoming a popular alternative to traditional cow’s milk. But is coconut milk low FODMAP?
Firstly, let’s define what FODMAP means. The word FODMAP is an abbreviation for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. Each of these are short-chain carbohydrates which are believed by physicians to be more difficult for the small intestine to absorb. If you suffer from bowel conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome or Coeliac Disease, you may need to follow a low FODMAP diet to avoid adverse side effects.
We strongly advise only following a low FODMAP diet upon instruction from a medical professional.
So is coconut milk low FODMAP?
The good news is that coconut milk is low FODMAP, provided it’s consumed in the correct quantities.
Both canned and UHT coconut milk are considered to be low FODMAP when served in quantities of 1/2 cup or less.
If it’s consumed in larger quantities such as 150ml or more, this wouldn’t be considered as low FODMAP as coconut milk may contain high levels of oligosaccharides. These are carbohydrates that are made up of monosaccharides, which is high FODMAP.
If you’re following a low FODMAP diet, make sure to consult with your physician before starting to regularly consume coconut milk.
How coconut milk is made
Coconut milk is made from fresh coconut flesh. To make coconut milk, coconut flesh is grated and then combined with water to produce a milky consistency.
The more water added, the thinner the milk, and the less water added the more creamy the consistency.
This process is traditionally carried out by hand. However, when sold on mass this process will be carried out by machinery in factories.
You can even make your own coconut milk at home! For a coconut milk recipe, check out our blog.
Baking with coconut milk
Coconut milk is a popular ingredient in modern baking due to its creamy, versatile benefits.
Many people like to use coconut milk as an alternative to cow’s milk in baking, to make baked goods that are vegan, keto-friendly, and paleo-friendly.
It’s also gluten-free, making it perfect for gluten-free baked goods.
|Per 1 Cup Serving||Coconut Milk||Cow’s Milk|
|Best for baking||Soups, pies, curries, rice, puddings/sweet treats (panna cotta, ice lollies)||Yogurt, butter, cheese, sauces, cakes, pies, ice cream, quiches, pancakes|
Diets that suit coconut milk
Coconut milk is suitable for a wide range of diets. It is very popular for people following a vegan diet, as it’s produced from coconuts rather than being a by-product from animals as with cow’s milk.
It’s also useful for those with lactose intolerance, as coconut milk doesn’t contain any lactose.
It’s suitable for those adhering to a keto diet, due to its low level of carbs (13g per 1 cup serving). Those following a paleo diet will be pleased to hear that coconut milk can be consumed on this diet too, as it’s made using coconuts and water which are both paleo-friendly ingredients.
Coconut milk is also gluten-free, making it generally suitable for those suffering from bowel conditions such as IBS or Coeliac disease. We always recommend consulting your physician before adding coconut milk to your diet if you suffer from either of these conditions.
Here are a few short frequently asked questions to help you learn more about coconut milk as a low FODMAP milk product!
Coconut milk is suitable for IBS sufferers, provided it’s consumed in no more than 1/2 cup per serving. If you suffer from IBS, we recommend checking if guar gum is an ingredient in the coconut milk you’re trying, as guar gum can be associated with negative digestive symptoms.
Coconut milk can upset your stomach if it’s consumed in large quantities (over 1/2 a cup serving). It is also high in dietary fiber, which can cause stomach issues if you’re not used to eating a lot of fiber.
Coconut milk can prove useful in reducing inflammation due to its sugar content. Sugar is known to be pro-inflammatory, so can be a good substitute for cow’s milk if you’re looking for an anti-inflammatory milk alternative.
If you’re at risk of high cholesterol or cardiovascular diseases, it’s not recommended that you drink coconut milk. This is because coconut milk contains substantial levels of saturated fat, which aren’t helpful for these conditions.
Coconut milk is considered to be better than cow’s milk in some ways, including the fact that it’s lactose-free, making it suitable for those with lactose intolerances. It’s also vegan, gluten-free, keto-friendly, and paleo-friendly.
However, cow’s milk is considerably lower in calories than coconut milk, with 148 calories per 1 cup serving of cow’s milk vs. 552 calories per 1 cup serving of coconut milk.
There’s a detailed comparison over on our blog between coconut milk vs cow’s milk. Check it out!