If you’re like most people, you’ve experienced bloating at one point or another in your life...
Although bloating itself can be uncomfortable, it can also have serious consequences to your health if left untreated.
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to treat this problem without resorting to medication or other risky methods of treatment.
What causes bloating?
Dehydration, too many salt-laden meals, overeating or simply overeating processed foods can all cause bloating. However, depending on what symptoms are present in your case, there may be an underlying medical condition at play.
A few potential causes for bloating include:
Food intolerance or allergies
Irritable bowel syndrome
Acid reflux (gastroesophageal reflux disease)
Gastroparesis (delayed stomach emptying)
You drink water while eating
You don’t properly chew your food
Swallowing too much air when you eat or drink
If you suspect that you have one of these conditions — or if your bloated belly is persistent — visit your doctor to pinpoint its exact cause.
Common eating/drinking bloating culprits:
Alcohol (beer and wine)
Cured meats such as bacon
Pickled vegetables such as sauerkraut
Canned food items that have been sitting in their own juices (the gases get released once pressure is released on them)
Caffeinated drinks like coffee, colas, black tea, or green tea
Do I have to avoid everything that makes me happy?
No! The first thing to do is figure out which habits or foods are causing your bloated stomach. If you don’t know what’s causing it, take a moment right now (don’t keep reading!) and think back on your diet for last 24 hours:
Note what you've eaten whenever you experience bloating
Look for certain food that could be triggers
Once you are fairly confident certain foods are recurring triggers, simply avoid them or reduce quantity and frequency of consumption
Were you eating too many fatty or sugary foods? Drinking lots of caffeine? Skipping meals? Don't be surprised if you're able to pinpoint at least one habit that may be making you feel uncomfortable.
Once you've figured that out, work on eliminating those habits from your day-to-day life! That may mean ditching sugary drinks for water or cutting coffee from your diet entirely.
Foods that help bloating
Certain foods are very effective at preventing bloating, such as;
Apples (along with their peel)
Turnips, parsnips and radishes
Add foods like these to your diet on a regular basis and you can say hello to a settled tummy— no need to avoid your favourite jeans anymore!
Tips & Tricks
Be wary of foods that cause gas, such as beans, broccoli, onions and dairy products. To reduce gas production even further, chew your food well before swallowing it
Avoid smoking—or at least cut back—because nicotine increases bloating
Also try to stay hydrated because dehydration can lead to discomfort in your stomach
If possible, avoid drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol since both are diuretics and encourage water loss through urination. When consuming them in excess, both can cause stomach bloat. This is especially true if you’re prone to heartburn or acid reflux disease (GERD) which tends to occur after drinking these types of beverages
You should be well on your way to figuring out what’s causing your belly bloat! As with any health issue, once you’ve discovered your root cause(s), I recommend addressing these factors in an attempt to relieve yourself of them. It may take time, but if you work at it daily, you can rid yourself of unnecessary belly bloat in no time. Good luck!