Q: "I’ve been on a high-protein, low-carb diet for two months. Since starting, I pass wind more often and the smell is stronger than usual. What foods would make that happen?"
Anonymous, via email
A: HFG dietitian Bobbie Crothers says:
“There are many reasons for increases in wind, and most have to do with the foods we eat. Changing to a high-protein, low-carb diet has obviously changed the types of foods in your diet and the extra gas may be a symptom of your body getting used to the change. Gas is produced when the bacteria in your large intestine ferment fibre (and any other waste that passes through our digestive tract undigested). With your new diet, there could be different waste products being fermented, causing an increase in wind.
In regards to the smell, some aspects of the diet can intensify the smell, including garlic, onion, spices and protein. The higher protein content in your diet may be what is making the smell stronger. Either way, I want to stress that high-protein, low-carb diets are not recommended long-term and the true health effects are unknown. Better health advice would be to follow a balanced diet, watch your portion sizes and keep active.”