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Gas, Burping, or Bloating That Begins After Eating or Drinking

Gas, burping, or bloating is common after you swallow air, eat foods that cause gas, or drink carbonated beverages. This is normal and usually can be prevented by making some simple changes.

The amount of gas that different foods cause varies from person to person. Examples of gas-producing foods are:

  • Peas, lentils, and beans of all kinds.
  • Vegetables, such as artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumbers, green peppers, onions, peas, radishes, and raw potatoes.
  • Fruits, such as apricots, bananas, melons, peaches, pears, prunes, and raw apples.
  • Wheat and wheat bran.
  • Eggs.
  • Carbonated drinks, fruit drinks, beer, and red wine.
  • Fried and fatty foods.
  • Sugar and sugar substitutes.
  • Milk and other dairy products in people who have trouble digesting lactose, the main sugar found in milk.
  • Packaged foods that contain lactose, such as breads, cereal, and salad dressing.

Gas, burping, or bloating after eating or drinking also may be caused by an inability to:

  • Digest certain sugars, such as lactose, fructose, or sorbitol. These sugars are often added to processed foods and medicines to make them taste sweet. Lactose is found in milk, cheese, and other dairy products.
  • Properly absorb nutrients, vitamins, and minerals from the digestive tract (malabsorption syndrome). Causes of malabsorption syndrome include:
    • Absence or low levels of certain digestive enzymes.
    • Diseases of the pancreas, such as cystic fibrosis.
    • Diseases caused by parasites, such as giardiasis, worms, or amebiasis.
    • Changes in the bacteria normally found in the intestinal tract.
    • Diseases that affect the intestine itself, such as celiac disease, which often develops in childhood after foods that contain gluten are added to the diet.
    • Surgery that alters or reduces the length of the intestinal tract.
    • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

Your doctor can check your symptoms to find out what is causing them and recommend treatment. Treatment may include changes in your diet, medicine to replace digestive enzymes and help reduce symptoms, and nutritional supplements such as iron.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerH. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Last RevisedJuly 12, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 12, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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