I have tried to add fiber to my diet, but I get gassy and feel bloated. Why does this happen and wha

This week's question was from Ben in Chowchilla: I have tried to add fiber to my diet, but I get gassy and feel bloated. Why does this happen and what can I do?

Jeff:

Well, fiber gets broken down by bacteria that live in the colon. This process, called fermentation, produces acid and gas but also nutrients that are good for the colon wall. The production of gas is what makes you feel bloated and can lead to an increase in flatulence. The best way to avoid these effects of fiber is to add fiber to your diet slowly. You can make gradual increases weekly, paying attention to how your digestive system is behaving. Also, adding more water to your diet while increasing fiber helps with these symptoms as well.

Last Updated Tuesday, August 19, 2014 - 10:12 PM.