Top Gas-Producing Foods

To avoid embarrassing intestinal gas and uncomfortable bloating, know which gas-producing foods to limit.

To avoid embarrassing intestinal gas and uncomfortable bloating, know which gas-producing foods to limit.

The sugars in some vegetables can lead to intestinal gas as they are digested. Onions and artichokes contain fructose, a type of sugar, while another sugar raffinose, is found in asparagus, brussels sprouts, broccoli and cabbage, among others. Vegetables that have soluble fiber like peas, can cause gas as they are digested in the large intestine.

Starch Foods
Starches, which are very high in carbohydrates, can cause gas when your digestive tract goes through the process of breaking them down. At the top of the list are foods made with wheat, including breads, cereals, and pastas all of which can lead to intestinal gas. Other common gas-producing foods in this category are corn and potatoes.

Some fruits contain another sugar, called sorbitol which causes excessive gas. The biggest culprits include prunes, apples, peaches and pears. Sugar-free gum and candy are sweetened with sorbitol, which is why they can lead to excessive gas. Fruits also contain soluble fiber, which when digested in the large intestine produces gas as a byproduct.

Milk and Dairy Products
Milk and other dairy products contain a sugar called lactose which can be difficult for your digestive tract to process if your body does not have enough of the enzyme lactase. Cheese, ice cream and milk all contain lactose, and may cause excessive gas in people.

Though oatmeal makes a healthy and delicious breakfast, packed full of cholesterol-reducing fiber, it’s also one of the foods that can cause intestinal gas. Oatmeal, oatmeal cookies and other oat products can all result in excessive gas because of their high soluble-fiber content. If you want to eat oats for their many health benefits, try slowly adding them to your diet in limited quantities to give your body time to adjust.

As nutritious as beans are, they are also notorious as a major gas-producing food. Beans create excessive gas for two reasons. First, they have a high raffinose content — the same gas-causing sugar found in certain vegetables. Second, beans also contain soluble fiber, whose digestion releases intestinal gas.

Sodas and Soft Drinks
A fizzy soda or sweet, fruity drink may taste delicious and refreshing but your belly may have trouble digesting it and uncomfortable stomach gas may be the result. The carbonation in sodas and soft drinks is just air, which can result in uncomfortable and excessive gas.

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