While many people find dextrin helpful as a laxative or fiber supplement, side effects can include gas, bloating and diarrhea, according to SFGate. Dextrin-based products often contain gluten, so it should be avoided by people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance.
If you cannot consume gluten, try to find a different option for a fiber supplement, such as psyllium, but keep in mind that other supplements may have their own side effects, explains SFGate. Many people experience allergic reactions to psyllium, for instance. While dextrin is often wheat-based, it is possible to find dextrin products made from other sources that are gluten free, such as corn, potatoes or arrowroot. Consult the product labeling or contact the manufacturer if you need to be sure that the dextrin you are buying is gluten free.
Gas and diarrhea can both be avoided by adjusting your fiber intake gradually and drinking lots of water, notes SFGate. If you introduce fiber supplements gradually, this gives your gastrointestinal tract time to adapt to the new diet. Finally, if you are taking any medications, consult with your doctor before taking dextrin to make sure there are not any unsafe interactions, urges the American Running Association. People taking opioids or other medications that slow down the digestive process may need to avoid fiber supplements such as dextrin.