Is Rice Malt Syrup a Fodmap?

Low Fodmap For LifeWhen following the low fodmap diet one of the biggest challenges I have faced is finding out about the best sugar alternatives for baking and general use. I have posted before about the toxic effects that erythritol has on the digestion of an IBS sufferer and I have also shared some of my favourite sweet treats here and here.

After research and personal trial and error I can announce that the winner of the best fodmap friendly sweetener is:

Rice Malt Syrup!!

The reasons for this is that it is fructose free, gluten free (the one I use is anyway, but you should always check), it retains some of the mineral content from the brown rice and it is a more complex carbohydrate for a slower release in the body (no more sugar highs and associated cravings!).1

The second place goes to Stevia!!

The reason for this is that it has a negligible impact on blood sugars and has no calories as well as being fructose free and gluten free. The main downside is that it can have a bitter taste and this isn’t for everyone. Note: always check that the stevia you use does not have sugar alcohols added such as erithrotol.

There is a better solution: combining them!

The reason why I like to combine Rice Malt Syrup and Stevia is so that I can get the lovely full flavour of the syrup but I can use less of it by adding some Stevia to give the right level of sweetness. This little trick means that I am saving a little on the calorie count as well as being kinder to my blood sugars – trust me, they appreciate the love I give them…


Warning: I am not a medical or nutritional expert! I am reporting on my personal experiences.



9 thoughts on “Is Rice Malt Syrup a Fodmap?

  1. One thing you should point out if you need to follow a gluten free diet you can’t have this rice malt syrup because of the barley content. I think there are some rice syrups that they make now that celiacs can have, but most are not suitable.
    I personally think it’s too sweet for me anyway. and Stevia, I’m not fond of because of the processing of it. I have used just the leaves off the plant in my tea, but that’s all. I don’t know why more people don’t use it in it’s natural state.

    I use maple syrup as my preferred sweetener. As you have recently written about your trial leaving sugar, I try not to eat much sugar….it is hard, and it is very easy to slip back into eating the sweeter stuff. But trying to keep my sugar limited has helped. My sweetener is less sweet, that helps. I don’t have sweet, sweet treats. My sweet treats are normally fruit.

    We can use sugar. It is 50% glucose and 50% fructose, it won’t hurt us. Normally if I do bake something, I add dextrose to make it even more glucose, just to be on the safe side. Of course, that isn’t cutting any calories, but if I’m baking, it’s normally for holidays or something. I do make some low calorie baked things, but they aren’t very sweet and I use mostly maple syrup as a sweetener.

    I’m glad you have found what works for you!!!


    • Hi Wendy,
      Thank you for taking the time to write and share your experiences! I am really lucky that the rice malt syrup we can buy in Australia is gluten free. I have not used fresh stevia leaves, I will have to try it, thanks for the tip!
      You are right in that maple syrup is a natural low fodmap sweetener and I’m pleased to hear that you are happy using it. I personally don’t choose maple syrup as, like sugar, it has a high GI and sends my blood sugars up. Rice Malt Syrup, being a more complex carbohydrate is a better option in that regard. It is also completely fructose free which is appealing to me.
      Thank you again for writing, I’ll see if I can grow stevia in my garden, hopefully my friendly possum doesn’t like eating it….
      All the best,


      • Ah….I see about the high GI.
        I don’t use much maple syrup. but I really don’t have much trouble with my blood sugar…well I do but in the other direction. I’m hypoglycemic. I have dramatic drops in blood sugar, another reason I avoid it most of the time. I can have it after I’ve eaten protein and it will stay stable. So no problems with me there.
        Your right, Rice Malt Syrup is Maltose. Completely different. I’ll have to check more out here and see if I can find some that is gluten free. I tested borderline for celiac, I didn’t have the biopsy test, just the blood test…so it could have been a false positive….I had more than one and they came out different…. so they don’t really know if I have it or not. I know I used to get very sick when I ate any of it, even a tiny amount….but now I don’t know if it was the Fructans. Still afraid of gluten. 😛


  2. Hi Wendy, it is interesting you say that about the gluten tests. My blood tests always come back negative for gluten allergy / intolerance, however I know that after eating gluten I get quite unwell – brain fog, lethargy, depression. At the end of the day, it is my life and regardless of medical tests I have chosen to be gluten free and I have been so glad I made that choice. The best thing we can do is listen to our bodies and if it doesn’t feel right then it probably isn’t good for our body … Good luck!


  3. Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!

    Extremely helpful info specifically the last
    part 🙂 I care for such information a lot. I was seeking this particular information for a very long time.
    Thank you and good luck.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. According to the Wikipedia page on the brown rice (malt) syrup, it has a glycemic index of 98!!! That almost 50% higher that of table sugar. Where do you get your information that it’s low glycemic?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi there,
      It is interesting what you say about wikipedia. I got my original information from the company that makes the rice malt syrup that I buy in Australia (Pure Harvest). It doesn’t say that it is low GI, but it says that it is a slow releasing carbohydrate, which I must admit led me to consider that it was lower in GI. After I saw your comment, I did some research and I found this article by a well-regarded author, you might like to read it too. She does also consider it to be high in GI, but at least it is fructose free. I guess the message is, no matter what sweetener we use, less is more. Thanks for bringing this to my attention! I hope Pure Harvest update their information soon as it is quite misleading. All the best, Sacha


  5. Hi Sacha, I just found your site and I love it. Thank you for all the information that you share here.
    I would like to ask you something…what do you think about the coconut sugar? Do you use it? It works for you?


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