I am a 23 year old and I have had excessive phlegm or saliva every time after I eat or drink anything from the time I was about 10-11 years old. It always causes me to produce a "wet" cough (just one) after I eat or drink anything to clear my throat and then several times of just clearing my throat without coughing for roughly 30 minutes. There is no stopping the cough unless I want to choke on the mucus. The excessive mucus affects my voice as well and is really annoying and extremely embarrassing. Everyone always thinks I have some kind of horrible cold if I eat around them, which makes me not want to. I have never met anyone else with this going on with them so I don't know where to begin to seek help. I don't have heartburn, I don't smoke, I don't work around harsh chemicals all day, I've lived in 3 different states (WA, FL, NM) in many different cities in the suburbs and urban areas and no matter where I have lived the problem remains which makes me think it's not environmentally related or climate related. Does anyone out there suffer from this and know what it is and how it can be treated if that is even possible?
Your problem is not unusual on this forum. You can also search the Ear Nose Throat forum for similar sufferers.
One of the possible causes is an endocrine imbalance, and the release of insulin after a meal creates excess mucus. It's more common in people whose belly measurement is greater than their waist measurement, but not necessarily. Dr. Diana Schwarzbein has written some excellent books on this subject
I tried googling Dr. Diana Schwarzbein and found some articles about hormone imbalance and cortisol levels but nothing really touching on the mucus/sore throat problem. Do you have any further information on this?
I suffer the same as the original poster mentioned, I also have a distended stomach. I am not overweight and have had success gaining and losing weight but my belly always sticks out no matter what weight I am at.
I have had tonsillectomy, taken a number of PPI's, antihistamines, nasal steroids, ive fasted, tried numerous diets (no wheat, dairy, processed foods, etc) NOTHING has helped. I would like to look into this hormone imbalance further since it's something i haven't heard of yet.
I would greatly greatly appreciate any further information you have on this
I am intrigued that there are many threads on this filled with people, yet no solutions.
Hopefully, as this is the most recent I could find, people will find what I have to say:
I suffered from the symptoms of coughing/spitting mucus after eating and a froggy voice for a few years after turning 14. It then intensified and encompassed chronic nasal congestion/sinus pressure and painful coughing. I acquired horrible "asthma." This continued for six months until I went on an elimination diet.
While I could discriminate no offending foods before the elimination diet, it quickly became apparent that processed commercial sweets evoked nasty episodes. Soon after, I realized that all fruit aggravated my condition. Currently, commercial sweets and most fruits nauseate me because I have been able to associate them with my reactions.
More recently, I have found that any carbohydrate (fruit, vegetable or sugar) has the potential to do me harm. Some, like brown rice, plain pasta and leafy greens, almost never provoke symptoms. Others, like pineapple, onion and milk/lactose are consistently troublesome. A rule of thumb is the more sugar, the worse. This does not always hold true, however, especially with regard to breakfast cereals (limit them -- I snack on them rarely WITHOUT milk). I presume it has to do with the glycemic index of food.
This took a particularly long time to understand most likely because of fat content. Most sugary treats I ate for a long time, like cookies, seemed fairly innocuous relative to fruits (I had a freak reaction when I introduced my first fruit -- strawberries -- after starting my elimination diet and have been unwilling to eat them since). The truth, in all likelihood, is that the fat from the butter slowed absorption of the sugar in baked goods, while fruits are fat free and thus much more easily absorbed.
The only possible explanation I can offer is that it is a form of chronic infection that for whatever reason resists the individual's immune system, and that ingesting sugar feeds the bacteria. Switching to a mid-fat, high protein, minimal sugar (absolutely no fruits or milk; cheese/sour cream acceptable; avoid tomato and carrots), reduced carbohydrate (don't binge on rice, avoid most bread (read the label for sugar)). Watch out for cured meats that introduce undesirable sugar.
Whether this will help others, I cannot say, but it is the only thing that has made a considerable difference for me, and it is entirely necessary at this point (I go loopy if I eat too much sugar). I will continue looking for a more specific answer.
I am suffering from the same symptoms for about 15 years now and it is getting worse. I have been to several specialists and they have ruled out asthma, reflux and allergies.
Although I have been tested negative for allergies I have noticed that chocolate and fat (mayonaise, fries, salami) are causing me to cough more so I try to avoid them.
I am glad to have found people with similar problems because I really want to get rid of this coughing. It is so exhausting and irritating for other people.
I will try what Octavios has suggested, but has anyone else since found a definite solution to this problem? Please let me know!
hi i have the same issues as everyone else and i have tried all known western medicine. i have started trying chinese medicine and it has helped. if anyone would want to know what herbs to take , u can message me. there are also exercises you can do to help also. I can also explain it to you from a chinese medicine perspective if you would like.
I've struggled with this for years and i can finally have some relief!!
I am a 29 yr old female with same problem of overwhelming mucus after eating and upon awakening. It's hard to remember not dealing with it, probably ~7yrs now. No alergies, asthma, or heartburn. Dr thought I might have LPR (type of reflux without heartburn) but, Nexium did not help. Others who have LPR report Nexium helps so, probably not a correct diagnosis. Mucus definitely comes from lungs/lung airway and not from stomach. Wheezing and cough are often present concurrently.
Octavios offers very good insight into the diet aspect of controlling it. I have been on very strict diet- mid-fat, high protein, low complex carb, no yeast (includes yeast extract which is in almost everything packaged), no sugar (Stevia only), and gluten free.
Natural remedies such as coconut oil (ONLY organic extra virgin), garlic (I use odorless gel caps), and daily glass of water with 1 TBS apple cider vinegar (can only reccommend unfiltered Braggs) all help. I did go through a couple choking episodes when first starting Coconut oil but, they subsided. I thought I might be allergic but, looking back, it was a reaction that showed it was effective.
Nothing, though, is more important than staying away from simple carbohydrates, yeast, and sugar. If I slip up on my diet and eat something sugary, symptoms come back within minutes if not seconds of it going down my throat; although not as severe as before I changed my diet.
As for the cause, I can tell you that I have showed positive blood test results for a mycoplasma species (Dr. not sure which one). If you've never heard about mycoplasma you can google and find out all kinds of good info. There are many strains of mycoplasma but, Mycoplasma pneumonia is the most common, presents as a respiratory infection, and can spread elsewhere if not treated. Some would argue that these symptoms are a result of yeast overgrowth, more particularly, Candida species. I personnally tested negative for all candida species.
Post other symptoms if you have any such as stiff neck, bloating, itchy scalp, post nasal drip, random coughing, acne, nasal congestion, trouble inflating or pain in lungs, headache, jaw stiffness or pain, or anything else you think may or may not be worth mentioning.
Prescription medications that have helped me with these symptoms are Diflucan & Septra.
This is so depressing.I did not realize how many people have this same problem. My mouth and throat feel terrible after these episodes. I don't like going out to eat anymore and it is embarrasssing at work and at church. From what I hear, there really isn't a cure.
I have the same problem with phlegm after eating/drinking, and I don't get any burning feeling associated with acid reflux. Sometimes excessive phlegm occurs after consuming fatty or creamy food; however it will absolutely happen when greasy food is combined with a cold drink in a social setting - the slightest anxiety about getting that horrid-sounding phlegm cough seems to constrict the chest and make it even more certain to happen.
I have found a solution that works for me - a cup of unflavored hot strong tea that clears the grease from my throat. I either avoid eating greasy food in company, or eat moderate amounts combined with hot tea. Hot tea also helps soothe anxiety. I did have to experiment with the amount of greasy food I can tolerate with the help of tea, but it's been worth it - I am now confident of not getting the dreaded phlegm when eating with other people.
I have had this sort of problem since a couple of bouts of trauma and was put on PPI's for the docs verdict of Gastritis. This made my symptoms worse so came off of those after a month. I now have the problem of excessive acid after drinking. Especially water it seems. Can this also be caused by trapped wind?
It's MSG. Research MSG and all the aliases by which it is permitted to be called. I wrestled with this for years before figuring out what it was, and of course I still do because it is so hard to avoid the stuff. Just got back from lunch and I'm coughing and throat clearing like crazy, but it's the first time in several days.
There are short term and long term aspects to this - 20min to an hour after I get a dose I start with the coughing, and it lasts an hour or so. But if I've been exposed to it regularly then I am much more sensitive, to the point of coughing all the time. OTOH, if I've stayed away from it then a small exposure is not much of a problem. Cut out spices, flavoring, natural flavors, hydrolyzed anything, malt anything, seasonings, etc. for a few days and see how you feel.
Hi Gary, I'd like to know, I've had the coughing up phlegm after eating for the last two years, I don't drink alcohol or smoke and no doctor can fix it either. They just give me drugs that affect other parts of my body so I won't take anything now. Do you have a natural remedy. I'd like to know as would many other sufferers out there.
i am alicia , i am 27 and i have had this for quite a few yr.'s now myself. i didnt notice how many other people suffer from it. it just is very bothersome for the fact i can not eat and be normal like other people afterwards. i will have to be exscused and go strait to the restroom so i can get that stuff out. when itcomes to me i do have athsma, allergies, post nasil drip,and am a big gurl but in the prosses of loosing it so am happy for my self, when it comes to that. but enough about me iam sry that this happens to all of you all to becaus i know the feeling but if anyone knows what it is calledor wat i can do to learn more about it please let me know
While the following is no way to live, it is a short term solution... I have done the lemonaid fast (the one with maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and lots of lemons) a few times in the past. After a few days, the body seems to clean out the mucus. Now granted, most people do not have an issue with mucus from those ingredients. But afterward I seem to be fine.. until, that is, I start to go back to a more inclusive diet. The fast can be difficult (and definetly not a good way to lose weight) but it is nice to have a break from all the clearing of the throat.
I think a leaky soft palate could be the problem. The soft palate seals to keep food out of your nose when you swallow - it's like the epiglottis in a way, except the epiglottis keeps food out of your lungs. Search on "Velopharyngeal Insufficiency".
I am 28 yo and have been noticing the same problem- one, single, wet cough after eating a meal. The bigger the meal, the bigger the cough. I am normal body weight and exercise 2 hours daily- I definitely don't have diabetes/metabolic syndrome.
I have studied medicine for many years. This is my conclusion: I spend most of the day at a desk and the bottom parts of my lungs (alveoli) collapse, as I don't expand my chest enough or ventilate it. When I have a big meal (I tend to have massive meals after exercising), the pressure of my full stomach pushes against the lower part of my lungs and "clears" the collapsed airways that have built up mucus throughout the day. I have come to this conclusion because this wet cough can sometimes occur when I am exercising (thus ventilating fully).
I may be wrong, but I think it's a lot simpler than the complex actions of sugars/insulin on mucus secretion, or a longstanding candida overgrowth and even less likely mycoplasma infection- it's a mechanical problem. Of course if you have diabetes and are overweight there may be a GERD component to it, but that's a different pathology. Asthma/postnasal drip will also be contributing in different ways.
If this is true then loosing weight, exercising frequently (aerobic full ventilation) and eating small frequent meals should do the trick. this will also help with diabetes and everything else...
Try digestive enzymes. My pharmacist suggested it after I complained about all of the meds the "professionals" keep prescribing. The enzymes worked for me. The one I have is Betaine HCL Caps with pepsin by Twinlab.
This is what I was going to suggest. My ND diagnosed me with having low stomach acid after I complained of waking up with excess phlegm. A simple test confirmed very low stomach acid levels and I now take Betaine HCL with pretty much every meal. The symptoms of low stomach acid are very similar to those of excess acid but include excess mucus production due to your body not having enough acid to balance out the mucus. The Betaine HCL has helped both with the phlem/mucus but also with bloating. I didn't realize that what I felt after each meal was actually bloating (thought it was just feeling "full"). I've never had any other gastro problems so this was a great catch by my ND. The medical term for low stomach acid is Hypochlorhydria and it can lead to all sorts of health issues due mostly to mal-absorption of nutrients.
To those who want to know what Chinese herbal formula will resolve phlegm in the throat:
The thing about TCM is that the treatments are tailored to treat the individual, not the symptoms. Everyone's body is different and even though we may all present with similar symptoms, the reason for this will vary, and taking someone else's herbal prescription may be completely ineffective or may exasperate the condition, especially if there is any other pattern going on simultaneously (which is usually the case). For one person, the cause could be digestive, perhaps an allergy for another, etc., all of which have several associated TCM patterns.
Rather than looking at herbs from a "magic pill" ideology, make yourself an appointment with a TCM practitioner who will do a thorough evaluation and formulate an herbal prescription best suited for YOUR needs, as well as advise you on diet and lifestyle which are all contributing factors.
If you take someone else's formula and it is not effective, you may tell others that you tried TCM and it didn't work, thereby giving the medicine a bad reputation. When used correctly, the medicine does work, so please get your herbal formula from someone who has the education and experience to prescribe it and not a random stranger off the internet.
This makes sense to me. The mucus is definitely being coughed up from the lungs to the throat. It is a possibility that I have experienced this reaction after sitting for an extended period of time.
I have been concerned with the excess mucus because of the connection between the heart and the lungs. People I have known with heart problems had excess mucus in their chest or throat and either coughed or cleared their throat a lot.
Hello I would like to ask how you know it's an endocrine imbalance? I also experience this problem and have noticed it is associated, or greater reactions occur, when my hormones are in flux like towards the end of my cycle.
I have had the same thing as well. I am heavier set- I used to be thin. But even when I was thin, I had the same problem. I don't know if it would help everyone else BUT if I am at home, I will brush my teeth (as well as my tongue) and the coughing goes away. For me, I am thinking it is just that some foods irritate my throat. Sauces and ketchup really get it going.
My name is Isaac. 43 years old.
I've been suffering for years with acid reflux/hiatil hernia for years. I have taken all the different acid reducers which help reduce the burning sensation.
But I still find that I have mucus and phlegm all the time (and a burning tongue) which is worsened after I eat or drink anything.
As a singer/composer/teacher this condition has destroyed my ability to use any of these G-d given gifts anymore.
I struggle daily. Please suggest to me what those herbs are and may do.
I have this problem when I consume foods with high oils. Even when I eat a green salad with dressing. Fried foods, mayonaise, even too much coconut oil brings it on. I have previously been on high dose of antibiotics due to lyme disease. Thinking back I think it started after this. I am 29yr old female and only had it for about a year now. I have been on a strict clean gluten free dairy free and sugar free, soy free, meat free, refined anything free- the list goes on - diet for a few weeks now. I was strongly a sugar addict before- so maybe it is related to candida overgrowth?? Maybe I havnt been on this diet long enough to get rid of it but it still certainly happens when I use too much oils. Any kind of oils. Coconut, extra virgin olive oil, rice bran oil- even chia oil. It took me almost a year to pick this up. I actually realised after going on this diet and having it happen after eating a simple salad. Now if it happens I can relate it back to oil straight away. Low oil meals an it doesnt happen. Even when I eat potatoes, fruit and carrots. Thats just me though. I wish I knew how to stop it without quitting oil. My skin is dry enough as it is! Ill just keep on the clean eating route and maybe when my body is fully healed after months of this new lifestyle it will all adjust itself. Im on this diet for liver and immune system. (nothing terrible- just trying to treat lyme without antibiotics. And I truly feel 90% better eating this way- but its not stopping the phlegm after an oily meal yet)
Hello. I have the same problem for many years. I've discover that this slime likes sweet. It comes out from every mucous membranes, also from chicks and tongue. It also cause swelling of whole body. I suppose it is bacterial infection or fungus. But the best news is that I found a natural solution of this problem. Try to rinse your mouth with liquid honey. This mucus is going out to honey and you can spit it out. It took me three days and nights and about 4 liters of honey to spit out all of it. During this time I ate almost nothing and drinked lot of water. I felt like a god after this. Also very good results gives aplying garlic on whole skin (be careful with face and espesially with eyes). Also good are garlic enemas. Garlic removes swelling of body and maces this slime going out to honey even more! During this treatment I felt mucous is moving in my body just to meet with the honey in my mouth.
I wish you good health and luck!
Ok. This happens to me soooo often. I now know that chocolate is a Nono for me also, muffins, doughnuts, anything sugary! Not good for us anyway! I do fine with meats, veggies & rice. Anything refined, and I am sick with mucus for hours! I learned my lesson.
I experience the same thing. I'm a healthy 15 year old with an average (19.7) BMI. The mucous in throat is so thick I have to "hack" it up and it feels like it fills my upper throat (behind the uvula). It's often greenish yellow. My doctor said I might need a surgery to repair my nose (which he said something about having too small sides or premature growth) Anyways, I don't smoke, so possibly it could be nonallergy rhinitis? :I Tell me if you discovered anything!!
I’ve suffered with excess phlegm after eating for about 14 years now. It started at the age of about 12 / 13 and has always been the worst right after breakfast. At around 12 / 13 I’d notice I would sneeze after breakfast and have to blow my nose once or twice. As time went on, this developed into excess phlegm in the nose and throat which, for years, has resulted in coughing, a runny nose and sneezing to try and clear it (which I have to stifle until I can blow my nose and relieve some of the congestion). I’ll also cough for about half an hour after eating breakfast to try and clear the phlegm in my throat. At lunch, it is slightly less of a problem but I will still get the sniffles and cough a lot. People will often ask if I have a cold! This then leads to me either brushing it off with a short answer or trying to explain my phlegm situation which usually results in some odd / disgusted looks (yes, person-who-doesn’t-cough-after-eating, I do realise this makes it sound like I am allergic to all food but honestly I’m not)! I was even tested for allergies to milk and dairy a couple of times. Tests always came back negative.
I find the worst offenders are milk and hot meals (having porridge in the winter has often resulted in some of the worst episodes of phlegm). But this isn’t just a food-related issue. My Dad has post-nasal drip (possibly caused from when he used to smoke, possibly hereditary) and was always coughing and blowing his nose to clear excess phlegm.
However, I HAVE FOUND SOMETHING THAT WORKS!
I’ve always been interested in how some foods, particularly natural remedies and ingredients can often be just as effective at relieving symptoms as over the counter drugs. Hear me out…
A while back, I stumbled across a home-remedy for cough syrup:
PURE PINEAPPLE JUICE (1 cup or however much you need) – known to be 5x more effective than cough syrup
TURMERIC (about a teaspoon) – an effective anti-inflammatory
HONEY (to taste) – has some anti-bacterial properties
I didn’t have a cold at the time, so forgot about this combination for a while. Then I came across that interesting fact somewhere else on the Internet – pure pineapple juice is 5x more effective than cough syrup.
So I thought I would give it a try. I went to my local supermarket and bought a carton of 100% pure pineapple juice and had a small glass the next morning with breakfast… THE RESULTS WERE AMAZING! Hardly any sneezing, very little phlegm and no coughing!
Only a few weeks ago, my parents came across the nifty factoid that turmeric is an anti-inflammatory and have been mixing it into milk or hot water to drink. MY DAD HARDLY COUGHS AT ALL NOW! I’ve also started taking turmeric in the mornings with my meal and right after and have had NO SINUS INFLIMATION, PHLEGM OR COUGHING!
I am so pleased that this has worked for me after years of suffering with excess phlegm that I thought I would have to deal with for the rest of my life. I really wanted to share this with fellow phlegm-sufferers in the hope that it will help relieve your symptoms too. (I would just mention here that this may not work for everyone, but it’s definitely worth a try!)
Now the only problem is, how do I bring a spice jar full of turmeric into work without arousing suspicion? :D
Get tested for H_Pylori ....if you have it, take the antibiotic prescribed by your doctor and when done go back to the doctor & get tested again....it is sometimes very hard to get rid of. Also, take a probotic everyday and I also drink 2 cups of 100% sugar free blend of Cranberry Juice daily Has been very helpful.
I take mucinex after meals if I start getting phlegmy. It has worked every time. I keep a bottle in my purse and take it with a full glass of water. I am a healthy 53 year old female not overweight and excercise three times a week. I suffered for many years with constant coughing. Now that I recognize that the cough is from phlegm and take a mucinex it is such a relief. Mucinex - generic at dollar tree is the least expensive. Hope this helps somone!
BETAINE HYDROCHLORIDE WORKS!
I've had some minor ulcer irritations in the past...otherwise healthy. Out of the blue I developed a "wet cough"....which seem to strike after each meal. Immediately after eating I would cough up a mouthful of mucous/phlegm that was both disgusting and embarrassing! No matter what I ate...healthy meal or unhealthy meal. My wife and I were baffled. I found this thread after days of Google research and tried a few different things...I eventually bought digestive enzyme tablets that contained Betaine Hydrochloride and the after-meal mucous cough-ups ARE GONE!!!! Its been 3 weeks since my last cough-up. Go get it! Try it! It does work!
Thank you Merrimac53 and PortlandMDX!!!
Hi I have had this problem going on for a few months now.. Seems like everytime I eat, basically no matter what I eat I start to cough after about 5 minutes of being done.. I cough and clear my throat to get the feeling of mucus in the throat out but nothing really ever comes up..
Sometimes I will get it during the day for no reason but that doesn't happen too often. I don't go out to eat anymore because I don't like having these attacks in from of people because it is embarassing and unpleasant. I have a bad gag reflex (gag a lot even just after getting a throat swap for strep) and when these coughing attacks occur I cough and clear so much that I start to gag a little and in my more serious attacks I gag a lot and in a sense dry heave and retch.
I am hoping someone out there can tell me what I can do to stop this!
And I have lost weight because I have recently been afraid to eat and when I do I only eat very small amounts because of the fear of having these coughing attacks
I have always had to deal with a lot of phlegm throughout my entire life. When I was a baby, I could not digest milk. It took me until I was a teenager to stop eating dairy products and that helped for awhile. In my 40s, I started suffering the same distended stomach that so many other posters have mentioned, so I tried to cut out all sorts of foods. I now rarely eat dairy, have gone gluten-free and eat a largely paleo diet.
For a few years that helped with the phlegm but not the distended stomach. Sometimes it sticks out so much that people think I'm pregnant. But recently, the phlegm has returned and I have a wet cough after every meal. No doctors have been able to help me.
I think that the way food is genetically modified and farmed is at the heart of the problem and all of us sufferers are the canaries in the coalmine to alert everyone else to a huge problem that will soon affect everyone.
I absolutely have to agree with you on this. Phlegm and mucus can be formed by candida overgrowth (bad gut bacteria). Also look to see if you have a scalloped tongue - if so, this means your body is not absorbing nutrients.
In order to control candida overgrowth, you need to start with a cleanse. You can buy kits for this at health food stores. It involves not eating any sugars (fruit included), no alcohol and no caffeine for a few weeks. Apparently the sugar in these things is what the candida (bad bacteria) feeds on, so you are basically starving it out of your system with the cleanse.
Once you complete your cleanse, you need to reintroduce flora (good bacteria) into your gut. This is done by taking a strong probiotic - the ones you get in the refrigerated section of health food stores and Whole Foods work the best.
For maintenance, drastically cut down your sugar intake and continue to take the probiotic.
I read that eating the same food choices repeatedly can also make that worse, because it is a respiratory plus digestion inflammatory response and the likelihood of it happening increases when you don't have a lot of variety in your diet. For instance, instead of always having a boiled egg and toast for breakfast, mix it up so you have a variety of different food items for breakfast alternating days. Do the same for lunch choices and dinner choices. If choices are limited, alternate at least every other day or every third day so you're not eating the same choices within 48 hours repeatedly. I read somewhere that this is a great plan if the elimination diet has not identified any obvious problem with you. I personally think that unnatural food additives preservatives and pesticides in produce can also be a cause. When we grew up eating fresh fruits and vegetables, and more fresh local and home grown sources of protein like fish, poultry, beef, no one ever seemed to have the chronic acid reflux and excessive mucus and respiratory reactions with eating.
I too suffer from excessive phlegm and wet coughing after eating. This has been going on for about a year now. I am curious - has anyone else experienced having an issue with eating nuts? I find that any time I eat nuts of any kind my skin breaks out in red blemishes that last for about 24 hours. The bumps aren't hives - they're more like painful pimples. The reason I ask is that many of those that have posted here have indicated having an issue coughing after eating fats and I've suspected that my issue with nuts is actually a problem with inflammation and digesting fats. During the past year I've also had the severity of my other allergies (mostly environmental) increase ... suspecting a congested liver is at least in part the culprit.
I have this same issue as far back as I can recall. I have not asked a doctor about this, most likely because I never remember to ask as the "issue" is only present immediately after eating.
I figured it was an annoying habit I picked up from my father, but now I suspect that, in my case at least, it's related to the presence of "esophageal webs". This is my thinking because I feel like some food becomes stuck somewhere in my lower throat. Sometimes this is definitive in that I'm able to dislodge it, and other times it's just a perception (feels like very small or trace amounts and then goes away after a while). But I ALWAYS have to clear my throat a lot after eating.
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