When it comes to foods that cause bloating, one of the best diets to explore is the low FODMAP diet. The acronym FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligo-Di-Monosaccharides and Polyols. This long unusual name simply refers to certain sugars and carbohydrates contained in specific foods which are known to cause symptoms of poor digestion including gas, bloating, cramping, diarrhea, and constipation when eaten by susceptible individuals.
By eliminating these foods from your diet, uncomfortable symptoms of the digestive tract can be easily avoided. Here is a list of 8 foods that may be causing you problems:
The most common food in the standard American diet which can lead to digestive discomfort is cow’s milk. Cow’s milk contain a sugar called lactose which is notorious for causing issues with the stomach and intestines. An enzyme called lactase is responsible for breaking down the sugar lactose in the digestive tract. When this enzyme is deficient, digestive upset can be the result. If you suspect that cow’s milk is causing you trouble, there are many dairy alternatives on the market including almond milk, coconut milk, and rice milk.
These delicious snacks are not as innocent as we would like to believe. Fruits including apples, peaches, watermelon, mangos, nectarines, apricots, and prunes are all high in polyols and fructose. These compounds can lead to fermentation in the small intestine which can give rise to swelling and water retention in the abdomen. It’s best to avoid these types of fruits and instead substitute with varieties such as bananas, cantaloupe, and strawberries which contain a lower amount of the offending compounds.
This ubiquitous grain has is quickly becoming the food to avoid for a variety of reasons. For those who suffer with discomfort after eating, wheat may be a potential source of the problem because of its high content of a compounds called fructans. These carbohydrates have been implicated in a variety of digestive disorders which have nothing to do with a gluten intolerance.
Once believed to be a health food, legumes including beans, lentils, and soybeans have come under scrutiny in recent years. All of these items are high in compounds called galactans, which can disturb the digestion.
Certain vegetables contain high amounts of a fructans and polyols. Asparagus, broccoli, brussels sprouts, corn, cauliflower, and green peppers are all high in these compounds, and should be avoided when bloating is an issue.
Cashews and pistachios are two of the most highly consumed snack foods. Unfortunately, they are also high in galactans which can cause issues. If you notice digestive upset after eating nuts, then cashews and pistachios should be the first to come under suspicion.
Sometimes sugar substitutes come with their own set of problems. Honey, high fructose corn syrup, xylitol, sorbitol, mannitol, and other “sugar alcohols” are food items which contain fructose and polyols that can lead to symptoms of gas and diarrhea.
Some coffee substitutes use chicory root as an alternative to coffee beans. Chicory root as well as dandelion root are high in a carbohydrate called inulin which can cause gas build up in the intestines.
There are numerous possible reasons for symptoms of the digestive tract, though some of the most common causes are diets that are high in fermentable sugars and carbohydrates. Although this list of 8 foods could be otherwise considered healthy, they are prime candidates for causing digestive discomfort.