If you’re looking to cut back on sugar, you might have seen sweeteners containing monk fruit – but is monk fruit low FODMAP?
This article takes a detailed look at monk fruit, monk fruit juice and monk fruit sweeteners. It will also explore how monk fruit fits in with a low FODMAP diet.
What is monk fruit?
Monk fruit, also called Luo Han Guo, is a fruit native to southern China. It has been used for centuries in China as a natural sweetener.
In recent years, monk fruit extract has gained popularity across the world as a sugar substitute for those looking to reduce their sugar intake.
It is around 100-250 times sweeter than table sugar (sucrose). However, it contains zero calories and so may be helpful for those looking to reduce their calorie or overall sugar intake.
You can buy monk fruit sweeteners in various forms to add to foods and included in different pre-prepared foods in place of sugar. These include:
- Lakanto Classic – Monkfruit Sweetener White Sugar Replacement
- Roam Low FODMAP Vegan Protein Powder – Vanilla (90g)
- LAKANTO Monkfruit Sweetener Icing Powder (200g)
- Health Lab Low Sugar Mylk Almonds (150g)
Is monk fruit low FODMAP?
Monk fruit, monk fruit extract and monk fruit juice are considered to be low FODMAP – though they haven’t been officially tested by Monash.
Monk fruit is considered to be low FODMAP because foods sweetened with monk fruit have been classified as low FODMAP.
For example, LAKANTO Chocolate Flavoured Topping is sweetened with monk fruit and is classified as low FODMAP in a 30ml serving.
Therefore the monk fruit itself must be low FODMAP in some amount, even if we don’t officially know what that is yet.
Is monk fruit sweetener low FODMAP?
Some monk fruit based sweeteners may blend monk fruit extract with other sweeteners or bulking agents which may be high in FODMAPs.
When you’re shopping for low FODMAP monk fruit sweeteners or products, be sure to check the ingredient list.
Particularly look out for other high FODMAP sweeteners: sorbitol, xylitol and mannitol. Monash has a very helpful article on label reading to check for high FODMAP ingredients.
To play it safe, opt for products that are labelled as 100% pure monk fruit extract or sweetener – not ‘monk fruit blend’.
We also have an informative article looking at which sweeteners are low FODMAP. This article addresses many questions you may have about other sweeteners.
Is monk fruit and erythritol low fodmap?
Erythritol is classed as a sugar alcohol. However it’s absorbed differently to other sugar alcohols, producing minimal gut issues, and is considered to be low FODMAP.
Monk fruit and erythritol are both considered to be low FODMAP – and so are likely to be low FODMAP in some amounts as sweeteners in foods, though we’re not sure what the amount is yet.
As erythritol is thought to negatively impact fructose absorption. It is best to limit it during the exclusion phase of the low FODMAP diet – and particularly during the fructose challenge.
Consuming a mix of both monk fruit and erythritol throughout the day may also have a cumulative effect, so again it’s best to limit this combination.
In terms of low calorie sweeteners that are safe for a low FODMAP diet, monk fruit emerges as a promising option.
It is classed as likely to be low FODMAP and in some amount is unlikely to cause gut issues for people with IBS.
However, as everybody is different. Make a note of any symptoms you may have after eating monk fruit and adjust your diet accordingly.
Make sure to check the ingredients label to find out if there are other sweeteners added to the monk fruit which may make it higher in FODMAPs.
If you’re not counting calories or only require smaller amounts of sweeteners, it’s also worth remembering that standard table sugar (sucrose) is considered low FODMAP.
I am a Registered Dietitian with a decade of diverse experience in dietetics, spanning clinical, public health (both pediatric and adult), community, and private practice settings. I hold a special certification in FODMAP training from Monash University, with a keen focus on IBS and gut health.
As a mother, I’ve cultivated a unique interest in women’s and family health. Particularly in the interaction between our gut and the many other nutritional concerns you may encounter while striving to provide the best for your family.