Monday, 6 July 2015

Tips for packing a nutritionally balanced low FODMAP lunchbox [FODMAP & Kids: 2/3]

By Peta Hill (Paediatric Dietitian)

TOP LEFT                  
– Gluten free wrap (containing buckwheat & sorghum flours) made with 1/8 avocado mixed with lactose-free cream cheese and roast turkey

TOP RIGHT               
- Brown rice crackers, sliced cheddar cheese

- Homemade low FODMAP muesli bar with pumpkin seeds

BOTTOM LEFT          
- Cherry tomatoes, cucumber

- Orange

Building a healthy lunchbox for your child is hard enough without the added complication of dietary restrictions – even temporary ones like the low FODMAP diet. 

Here are some tips to guide your packing:

Think of a serving size similar to your child’s fist.

Handy hints
Cutting up fruit and putting it into a smaller container for protection prevents squashing and is quick and easy for kids to eat. 

This helps to fill kids up. If your child comes home “starving” and tends to over indulge in afterschool snacks and then isn’t hungry for dinner, consider increasing the protein content of their lunchbox.

Good sources of low FODMAP protein include:
  • MEAT & POULTRY (e.g. leftover roast meats, garlic and onion free patties and meatballs or deli meats),
  • FISH (e.g. tinned tuna/salmon, smoked salmon, garlic and onion free fish patties),
  • EGGS (e.g. hard boiled eggs, frittata, egg slices),
  • NUTS (if your child’s school permits!) & SEEDS (e.g. 10 almonds/hazelnuts/peanuts/mixed nuts, pumpkin/sunflower seeds or homemade trail mix/muesli bars/spreads made with Low FODMAP nuts* and/or seeds*) as well as
  • DAIRY PRODUCTS (e.g. hard yellow cheese, lactose free yoghurt/custard).
*Ensure low FODMAP quantities by consulting the Monash University Low FODMAP diet app.

Handy hints 
While it’s a good idea to fill sandwiches, wraps and rolls with protein, it can also be included separately.

TOP, LEFT TO RIGHT              
– homemade low FODMAP muesli bar with pumpkin seeds, cheddar cheese slices

– low FODMAP chicken patties, roast turkey from the deli, almonds

The Australian Guide to Healthy Eating recommends around 5 serves of vegetables for school aged children, making it nearly impossible for kids to get the veggies they need just from their dinner plate.

Handy hint
Dips can make vegetables more appealing for some kids.  Try lactose free cream cheese or a homemade low FODMAP dip with garlic-infused oil. 
Choose breads, wraps, crackers and biscuits based on low FODMAP whole grains, such as, brown rice, buckwheat*, millet, oats*, quinoa, sorghum, or spelt sourdough*.

*Ensure low FODMAP quantities by consulting the Monash University Low FODMAP diet app.

Handy hint
When baking, choose recipes that incorporate whole grains, such as our low FODMAP ANZAC cookies with oats

Final tip
Always include a water bottle and keep food fresh and safe, use ice blocks or frozen water bottles and an insulated bag.


  1. Hello.

    I see that millet is low fodamp, but I have not seen it in the app. What are the quantities? And is there a difference between whole millet and millet flakes?

    I also wondered about quinoa, in the app only flakes are listed, but is whole quinoa and quinoa flour also low fodmap? In which quantities?

    When is the new update? I absolutely love the app! Thank you so much for all the research you do...

    1. Hi Katie,
      So glad to hear you're enjoying the app! Official results of the FODMAP content of millet will be released soon and updated on the app. And yes you're right in thinking that the FODMAP content of foods can differ depending on the way in which they are processed/cooked. The new update for the app will be coming out in the next few weeks so stay tuned! ...In the mean time, introduce these grains in a small amount, assess for symptoms and increase as tolerated.

      Cheers, Peta (Dietitian)
      The Monash low FODMAP team

    2. I don't have the app. Could you tell me about millet anyway? Thanks for all you do. I enjoyed this article.
      I recently found out that people who test negative for sibo may still have it, because there is a third type that the test does not test accurately for, and that is hydrogen sulfide. I test negative for sibo, but I have 30 food allergies ("latex fruit allergy syndrome"), lyme and coinfections babesia & bartonella. I have been on treatment.. everything possible it feels like, binders, charcoal, vitamins, mthfr vitamins, probiotics, chlorella, turmeric, vit d, magnesium, thyroid, quercetrin, low dose naltrexone, etc etc for 2 years, including antibiotics, antimalarials, and antibacterial herbs. I'm getting a bit tired seeing no progress with my food allergies!
      So I am now on xifaxan, and we're really hoping it's going to be a miracle drug. I'm also busy praying. Will start the sibo diet too on top of my normal allergy avoidance diet..
      So anyway, I'll be coming back to your website. Thanks for all you do!

  2. What kind of crackers are those? I haven't been able to find any low FODMAP friendly ones here.

    1. Hi onescrappychick,
      Unfortunately we don't mention brands, nor can we advocate one brand over another by naming names but I can tell you that their ingredient label is the one shown under 'good choice'. Most plain and wholemeal savoury crackers are low FODMAP when consumed in moderate amounts (i.e. <5 biscuits). For more information, check the app!

      Cheers, Peta (Dietitian)
      The Monash low FODMAP team

  3. I would love the recipe for the bars you mention.

    1. Hi runnerfaith,

      You can get the recipe here:

      Kind regards,
      The Monash FODMAP team