Are Olives Low FODMAP? Everything You Need To Know

December 19, 2022
are olives low fodmap

 Are you wondering, “are olives low FODMAP?” Good news! Not only are olives low FODMAP but they contain trace amounts of FODMAPs and can be enjoyed according to appetite!

This rule applies to both black or green olives but are olives okay for IBS? There may be some olive products that could trigger IBS symptoms. Keep on reading to find out what those are or feel free to use the list below and jump straight to the section you want:

Are Olives Low FODMAP?

are olives low FODMAP

Green and black olives have a low FODMAP serving of 15 small olives, which is about ½ cup or 60 grams. They are high up on the FODMAP food list because they contain trace amounts of FODMAPs.

While olives themselves are safe to eat, the biggest FODMAP factor has to be how they are marinated or served. Cocktail olives that are stuffed with onion or garlic are not low FODMAP and sometimes olives can be brined with garlic shavings.

Before we get into stuffed olives and FODMAPs, let’s cover the basics: starting with green olives. 

Green Olives

are olives low FODMAP

Are green olives low FODMAP? Yes! Monash University states that green pitted olives have trace amounts of FODMAPs. The serving size is 15 small olives (½ cup or 60 grams) but they can be enjoyed and eaten freely according to appetite.

Fun fact: Did you know that black and green olives are the same fruit? The only difference is the stage they’re picked at. Black olives are picked when they’re fully ripe and green olives are picked earlier.

Black Olives

are olives low FODMAP

Are black olives low FODMAP? Yes, just like green olives, black olives are low FODMAP and have a serving size of 15 small olives, which is about ½ cup or 60 grams. They contain trace amounts of FODMAPs which means black olives can be eaten freely and according to appetite.

Are Stuffed Olives Low FODMAP?

are olives low FODMAP

I was on holiday in Spain and ordered some tapas. They were olives stuffed with pimento peppers but then I stopped myself mid bite before I asked, “are pimento stuffed olives low FODMAP?”

Pimento peppers have not been tested and I had some minor bloating but I figured that stuffed olives FODMAP levels might be different depending on what they’re stuffed with:

A list of stuffed olives you should avoid: 

  • Artichokes
  • Cream cheese
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Asparagus

A list of stuffed olives that may be okay: based on low FODMAP research findings.

  • Almonds (Maximum 10 nuts)
  • Capers (low FODMAP at 8g or 1 tablespoon)
  • Anchovies or meats (protein does not contain FODMAPs)
  • Feta (low FODMAP at 30g or 3 tablespoons)
  • Jalapeno ( low FODMAP at 15g or 1 tablespoon)
  • Sundried tomato (low FODMAP at 8g or 3 pieces)
  • Lemon peel (untested but lemon zest has a serving size of 3g or a whole lemon)

Is Olive Tapenade Low FODMAP?

Olive tapenade was one of my favorite spreads when I first started the IBS low FODMAP diet. It’s basically a bunch of olives, capers, and anchovies blended into a smooth paste. 

Some olive tapenades may not be low FODMAP depending on the recipe. Ingredients to look out for are garlic, ingredients listed as ‘natural seasoning’, or ‘herbs and spices’. These vague listings can contain garlic or onion powder. 

Is An Olive In A Martini Low FODMAP?

The olive in your martini is low FODMAP but your drink may not be. Alcohol irritates the gut and can trigger IBS symptoms for some people.  

People with IBS are advised to limit intake and only have small servings. I actually had to look up what goes in a martini to check the FODMAP content:

  • Gin has a low FODMAP serve of 30ml.
  • Vodka has a low FODMAP serve of 30ml.
  • Vermouth hasn’t been tested. 

On to some actual liquid that’s FODMAP free: Olive oil!

Olive Oil

are olives low FODMAP

Is olive oil low FODMAP? Yes, olive oil has zero FODMAPs because oils and fats do not contain any FODMAPs. The healthy or recommended serving according to the app is 1 tablespoon or 18 grams.

While oil may be FODMAP-free please note that fat affects gut motility and can trigger symptoms when excessively consumed. 

The Monash FODMAP app has three kinds of olive oils listed in their app: regular olive oil, virgin and extra virgin. The FODMAP levels are all the same: zero and the only differentiating factor is the quality of the oil.

Virgin Olive Oil

Virgin olive oil is better than regular olive oil but not as good as extra virgin olive oil. Think of it as the mid-range oil that’s too good to cook with and just good enough to use in salad dressings.

It’s FODMAP free and has the same serving size of 1 tablespoon or 18 grams.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is the highest quality olive oil. It’s expensive and known as green gold. This olive oil is also FODMAP free and has a serving size of 1 tablespoon or 18 grams. 

You can cook with EVOO but it’s not the best idea. It has a low smoke point which makes it a poor choice for cooking. This type of olive oil is made without chemicals or heat and tastes light and fruity. This means that it’s better to save EVOO for dips, dressings, and cold dishes.

Infused Olive Oil

Like olive oil, infused olive oils have a low FODMAP serving size of 1 tablespoon or 18 grams. 

If you’ve been on the low FODMAp diet long enough, you’ll know that infused oils are a great way to add onion and garlic flavor into your meal. Why infused olive oil is low FODMAP:

  • Oil and fat is FODMAP free.
  • FODMAPs are water soluble which means that they are dissolved in water and not oil.
  • Also, oil and water cannot mix. So, infused oils take on the flavor of ingredients like garlic while trapping the FODMAPs in the clove. 

The actual clove or onion is filled with FODMAP and should not be eaten. 

Infused olive oils are a great way to add garlic and onion flavor into any low FODMAP meal. You can easily make your own low FODMAP infused olive oil at home or buy certified ones:

FODY Food Co. Infused Olive Oil: Garlic (US, CAN, UK)

FODY Food Co. Infused Olive Oil: Shallot (US, CAN, UK)

Colavita Garlic Oil (US)

Cobram Estate Infused Oil: Garlic (AUS)

Cobram Estate Infused Oil: Chili (AUS)

The Downside To Olives: Can Olives Cause Digestive Problems?

are olives low fodmap

The core of the low FODMAP diet is not just FODMAP content but how certain foods affect our body. Olives are rich in antioxidants and are super FODMAP friendly but are olives ok for IBS?

Olives may be FODMAP friendly but they are high in fat and are very salty. Foods with high fat content triggers gastrointestinal problems for people with IBS. You may have digestive issues like diarrhea if you eat too many olives because of their high fat content.

Do you have any more questions about olives and IBS? Hop on to the next section for some of the web’s most frequently asked questions about olives.

FAQ About Olives & IBS

You’ll find a list of questions that frequently pop up in the discussion about olives FODMAPs in this section.

I’m going to kick off this section with a weird and somewhat olive related question. This one’s for my readers living in the US and want to enjoy a nice dinner out at Olive Garden:

Olive Garden Low FODMAP Or Not?

Honestly, no. Olive Garden’s menu has a lot of garlic, onion, tomatoes, wheat and cheese. All of which can trigger IBS symptoms. Here are my three recommendations for eating out at olive garden low FODMAP edition:

  • Stay away from the saucy stuff and breadsticks.

9 Low FODMAP Pasta Sauces

  • Order a regular salad with no dressing: Ask them to bring the oil and vinegar to your table for you to add. You can ask them to add eggs or unseasoned chicken to the salad to make more filling.

Is Vinegar Low FODMAP? All About 7 Vinegars and their FODMAPs.

  • Choose the “create your own pasta” option: Ask for gluten free pasta. Stay clear of any red sauce as it’ll probably have garlic or onion. Check if their basil pesto has any garlic. Or ask for gluten free pasta with fresh cherry tomatoes, add a protein like unseasoned shrimp, chicken or beef. You can also order gluten free pasta, make them leave parmesan at the table and add black pepper to create your own authentic cacio e pepe pasta.

I know some people have even brought their own sauces and low FODMAP dressings to restaurants. You have to do what makes you comfortable.

Now, on to actual olive related questions.

What Kind Of Olives Are Low FODMAP?

According to the Monash University, green and black olives are both low FODMAP at 15 small olives, half a cup or 60 grams to be precise. 

Can You Have Green Olives On FODMAP?

Can you eat olives on a low FODMAP diet? Yes, you can. Green olives contain trace amounts of FODMAPs and are safe to eat at any phase of the low FODMAP diet.

Just be sure to eat them in moderation because olives have a high fat content and fat can trigger IBS symptoms. 

Is Kalamata Olives Low FODMAP?

Are kalamata olives FODMAP friendly? Kalamata olives are a type of black olive that have a purple shade. Monash University has not tested kalamata olives but they might be low FODMAP since black olives are low FODMAP.

Is Olive Good For IBS?

Are olives good for you? Yes, they are. They contain minimal FODMAPs, are rich in vitamin A, filled with antioxidants and increase gut health [1]. However, even with all those benefits I listed, olives are also high in fat. Green olives in particular have a high fat content.  

Fat is a trigger for people with IBS. My advice is to eat olives in moderation to avoid any triggers.

I hope that answers your question, “are olives low FODMAP?” I honestly forgot that olives were high in fat and didn’t think they’d be an issue because they’re low FODMAP but I guess it goes to show that we’re all still learning about food and the low FODMAP diet.

Here are some other articles you might find interesting:

28+ Low FODMAP Pizza Toppings

Are Leeks Low FODMAP?

Carrots & FODMAPs

All About  Fungi & FODMAPs

Which Mushrooms Are Low FODMAP?

Green Beans FODMAP

Is Sweetcorn Low FODMAP?

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