What foods cause flatulence/gas?

Believe it or not, intestinal gas is normal AND healthy. However, certain foods can stimulate a little too much gas for your liking. These foods are common culprits.

The main cause of gas is the bacterial fermentation of undigested sugars in our colon.

  • Dairy. The main cause of gas is the bacterial fermentation of undigested sugars in our colon. Poor digestion of the milk sugar lactose, therefore, makes dairy products a leading cause of gas¹.
  • Sorbitol and Xylitol. Found in sugar-free sweets, these sugars are often poorly digested.
  • Soda. The high fructose in soda can be another culprit².
  • Eggs. If you’re worried about the smell, take another look at those hard-boiled eggs. Gassy odors appear to stem from the digestion of sulfur-rich foods. If you want to dilute the stench, your best bet is to cut back on foods like meat and eggs – hydrogen sulfide is known as the “rotten egg gas” for a reason.
  • Certain grains. 
  • Cruciferous vegetables/beans. Doubling up to provide prebiotic potential, it’s worth trying to keep them in your diet.


  1. Price KR, et al. Flatulence–causes, relation to diet and remedies. Nahrung. 1988;32(6):609-26. doi: 10.1002/food.19880320626.
  2. Beyer PL, et al. Fructose intake at current levels in the United States may cause gastrointestinal distress in normal adults. J Am Diet Assoc. 2005 Oct;105(10):1559-66. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2005.07.002.
  3. Di Stefano M, et al. The effect of oral alpha-galactosidase on intestinal gas production and gas-related symptoms. Dig Dis Sci. 2007 Jan;52(1):78-83. doi: 10.1007/s10620-006-9296-9.
  4. McEligot AJ, et al. High dietary fiber consumption is not associated with gastrointestinal discomfort in a diet intervention trial. J Am Diet Assoc. 2002 Apr;102(4):549-51. doi: 10.1016/s0002-8223(02)90127-6.

On this page