Posted by: Bruce A. | 2020/02/02


Heavy chest pain when I eat spicy food or carbs

I've been having shortness of breath, and sometimes a chest discomfort after consuming bread/pasta, and especially rice. Spicy foods also affect me. It's been getting gradually worse over the last 3 years. Coarser milled flours, found in Ezekial bread for instance, didn't affect me as much, but now has a similar affect. I'm 63 and I am a road cyclist putting in 100 miles average a week, and also ride 100 mile century rides through the year so I'm in pretty good shape. Last week I binged on 4 slices of raisin bread and some pepper crackers. The following day the shortness a breath was pronounced, and I had a hard time with energy and stamina because of it. I have stopped all breads for a week, but still cannot get my stamina back as I had to cut short my ride today (3 miles). Have I triggered a permanent condition, or will this go away with time? Is this a typical allergy, and is there a special diet I can follow? I did have an arm allergy test and they said I have slight reaction to grasses. Thank you in advance for any advise you might have for me.

Expert's Reply


Asthma Expert
- 2020/02/07

There are a number of ways in which eating may affect the lungs.  Sometimes there is reflux of gastric contents into the food pipe and some of it can trickle into the lungs (aspiration).  This may occur with a sliding hernia (hiatus hernia).  Another way in which this could occur is an allergic type of reaction causing bronchospasm and wheezing.  However, this is rare with food allergens and more common with aero allergens, i.e. allergens that are breathed in like pollens and grasses.  If it continues you should see your doctor to try and address some of these possibilities.

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