Potatoes are a very popular vegetable around the world. They are just behind wheat, when it comes to total food crop consumption in the United States. They are appreciated for their remarkable taste and flavor, and also for their numerous health benefits. However, many people do complain of bloating after eating potatoes. Do these vegetables really make you gassy? Well, let’s find out.
When your stomach gets bloated, you feel tight and full, perhaps with your pants finding it hard to fit your body. You then start to pass out a lot of gas or flatulence very frequently, which may have an offensive or foul smell. This can be very embarrassing.
Although it’s natural to fart, it becomes out of this world to be releasing gas more than 30 times a day. If you happen to be so, then you are likely bloated. This means you have to evaluate your diet, and find the culprit of your gas problems.
Most reports have put an average person to fart about 14 times a day, and release anywhere between 500-2000mL of gas everyday. That’s a lot if you ask me. I personally don’t fart as much. But be rest assured that you are okay if you fart that much everyday. That’s just how humans are.
Do potatoes cause gas and bloating?
Yes. Potatoes cause gas and bloating. This has been attributed to the starchy nature of their content. Starch content usually gets broken down in the large intestine and produces gas in the process. In fact, among all starchy foods, rice is the only one that doesn’t cause gas.
The University of Michigan Health System has a program that is dedicated in providing awareness when it comes to problems of the bowel. It is called Michigan Bowel Control Program (MBCP).
The program classified potatoes under foods which cause moderate amount of gas, and labelled them with the tag “may need to avoid”. Foods like cauliflower, beans, peas, cabbage and onions where classified under foods that cause the most gas, and were labelled with tag “avoid”.
I recently wrote a post on the Top 7 Vegetables that cause Gas and Bloating. You can check it out.
How can you reduce gas?
There are a lot of ways to limit the production of excess gas in your stomach. Most professionals recommend the use of certain over the counter medications and digestive enzymes. Examples are lactase supplements, which helps digests carbohydrates.
There are also enzymes that are made to help digest most other kind of food materials. However, you should always consult your healthcare professional before using any medical product for your gas, as some may have side effects.
Apart from medications, you might want to try reduce the amount of air you swallow. Things like eating fast, chewing gum, smoking, and talking while eating can make more gas get into your stomach. Although most of this gas find its way out through burping, a considerable percentage gets absorbed into the intestine, and will have to be released through the rectum.
Most importantly, reducing gas all boils down to the kind of foods you consume. Try to limit the intake of foods that are known to cause gas and bloating. You should avoid fermentable vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, and beans. You should also cut down on certain whole grains that are rich in fiber and raffinose.
Potatoes like most other starchy foods can cause gas and bloating. But this doesn’t mean you should eliminate them from your diet. You can instead focus on food pairing and taking fluids before your meals. You can also reduce all possible means of swallowing too much air into your stomach.
Nevertheless, potatoes are well tolerated by some people. Everybody tolerates food differently. Some foods that can cause a lot of gas in some individuals may only cause normal gas in others. So, it all boils down to how your system reacts to a certain food and whether you can tolerate it or not.