Where Does Bloating Come From And How To Get Rid Of It

Have you been bloated before? Here is what causes that and how you can get rid of it.

When to see a doctor as soon as possible

Schedule an urgent visit to a gastroenterologist or therapist if a bursting feeling in your stomach haunts you regularly, almost every day. And especially if there are additional symptoms

  • blood in the stool
  • prolonged constipation or diarrhea
  • any changes in the frequency of bowel movements
  • weight loss even though you have not changed anything either in nutrition or in physical activity
  • persistent or intermittent nausea and vomiting

Call an ambulance immediately (103, 112) or go to the nearest emergency room if bloating is accompanied by

  • persistent abdominal pain
  • burning pain in the chest

All of these can be symptoms of deadly conditions, including bowel tumors or heart attacks. However, serious causes of bloating are infrequent. If there are no threatening signs, chances are you are fine. The bursting sensation does not appear in the future; it is enough to understand its causes and slightly change food habits and lifestyle.

Read also: Does Stress Really Affect Digestion?

Where does bloating come from, and what to do about it

Here are the most common reasons and how to fix them.

1. You overeat

The stomach is a rather tiny organ. According to various sources, it can hold 1 to 4 liters of food and drinks when extended. If you overeat, the stomach walls are stretched beyond measure. And you feel the heaviness as if the belly is bursting.

What to do

Try to reduce your portion sizes. If you are not full, eat more often - up to 5-6 times a day. But don't push more into your stomach than it can hold.

2. You swallow air while eating or drinking

Lovers of chatting during lunch often suffer from this. When you talk and eat simultaneously, a portion of air enters your esophagus with each bite. The same thing happens when you chew gum, suck lollipop, drink through a straw.

What to do

Observe the rule "when I eat, I am deaf and dumb." Avoid foods and habits that make you swallow air.

3. You chew badly or eat too fast

This leads to the fact that you swallow large chunks. They expand the esophagus, and therefore air enters the stomach.

What to do

Check that your food has been thoroughly chewed. By the way, many people eat too fast, in large chunks, when they are under stress. Try to learn how to manage your emotions.

4. You are high on fatty foods

Fat is more difficult to digest than proteins or carbs. Therefore, the stomach does not empty for a long time.

What to do

Try limiting fat in your diet.

5. You have food allergies or intolerances to certain foods

These two conditions are sometimes similar but have different mechanisms of development. Allergy is a powerful reaction of the immune system to an irritant-allergen. Food intolerance has genetic causes; the body does not perceive this or that product and reacts to its appearance by developing chronic inflammation.

However, in the context of bloating, the body's response to “inappropriate” foods is the same: they can cause excess gas in the intestines.

Here are some foods and their ingredients that can be dangerous

  • LactoseLactose intolerance. This is the name of the main carbohydrate in dairy products.
  • Fructose. These are sugars, which are especially rich in sweet fruits (bananas, grapes) and honey.
  • Eggs. Excess gas and bloating are the main symptoms of egg allergy.
  • Gluten. This is a protein contained in cereal seeds, especially in wheat, rye, barley. Its excessive use can lead to various digestive symptoms, including bloating.
Where Does Bloating Come From And How To Get Rid Of It
Image source: Reproduction/Internet

What to do

Try to keep track of what you ate before you have a bursting feeling in the stomach and intestines. Perhaps we are really talking about food intolerances.

If you believe you have an intolerance to some foods, stop eating them completely for at least 21 days and see if your symptoms improve.

Nicola Shubrook, a nutritionist in an interview with NetDoctor

6. You eat foods that cause excessive gas formation

These products include

  • carbonated drinks, including beer
  • products containing artificial sweeteners - aspartame, sucralose, sorbitol, xylitol
  • some vegetables and fruits high in fiber - legumes (beans, peas, lentils), cabbage (white cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower), carrots, apples, apricots, prunes
  • dietary supplements containing fiber

What to do

Try for a while to give up food that stimulates gas formation, and observe how you feel. If you manage to find a product that provokes bloating, you don't have to give it up - limit its use. You can try supplementing the diet with foods that, on the contrary, reduce gas production.

Fermented milk products can help you get rid of bloating: natural yogurt, kefir, fermented baked milk. They contain beneficial bacteria that help food digest. When bloating, it is worth eating porridge. Oatmeal helps to normalize digestion, and buckwheat porridge improves intestinal motility. Dill is the most commonly used home treatment for flatulence. You can add it to salads to prevent bloating, or you can brew a decoction of dill seed.

Elena Kalen, nutritionist

7. You are constipated

Normally, there are gases in the digestive system. When there are too many of them, they retreat through the anus. But with constipation, the passage of gases is difficult. They accumulate in the intestines and cause bloating.

What to do

Understand the causes of constipation. When you normalize your bowel movements, the bloating problem will go away on its own.

Also read: Never Eat This On An Empty Stomach

8. You smoke

Smoking affects the activity of the digestive tract and may well cause gas formation.

What to do

Stop smoking. Or at least reach for your cigarette less often.

9. You have problems with the digestive system

Gas production is often increased in bowel diseases such as diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis, or Crohn's disease.

What to do

If bloating is bothering you frequently, see a gastroenterologist, even if there are no other warning signs. This is necessary to exclude possible diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.

Adapted and translated by The Cop Cart Staff

Sources: Life hacker