We have all experienced the unpleasant sensation of a bloated abdomen. This usually happens after a big meal or because we ate something we probably shouldn’t, because it just doesn’t make us feel good.
In most cases, the great news is a bloated abdomen is temporary and is something you can usually avoid quite easily.
The main reasons you have a bloated belly
The first and most common reason is that you have eaten a lot
When you eat more food than usual, your stomach tends to bloat. The muscle stretches, and this in itself can cause swelling. Fortunately, in this case, it will not take long to get back to your normal stomach. What you can do is eat small, frequent meals to keep your hunger under control throughout the day.
Foods that produce gases
Some of our favorite greens, such as cabbage, broccoli, belong to the category of vegetables. This means that they contain a sugar called raffinose, which sits in your gut until bacteria ferment it. This results in the production of natural gas, which then swells. Also, legumes, apples, and anything salty can cause bloating in the stomach.
Ingestion of air
When you chew and swallow food, you also swallow air. Your intestines can handle a specific amount of air, but if you are in a hurry and eat too fast, you will probably swallow more air than usual, causing your abdomen to swell. To prevent consuming a lot of air, you should chew and eat slowly.
You do not tolerate lactose
If you drink a glass of milk or eat a lot of dairy products and suddenly feel that your stomach is bloated, then you could be lactose intolerant. This means that your body does not have the enzyme lactase, which breaks down lactose, the sugar found in dairy products.
Fortunately, there are many equally delicious lactose-free milk options. The American Gastroenterology Association also recommends taking lactase tablets, which can help you digest lactose-containing foods.
You have celiac disease
When people with celiac disease consume gluten, it causes damage to the small intestine, which can manifest in various ways. Some of the many symptoms include bloating and pain, vomiting, weight loss, fatigue, joint pain, and sores in the mouth. If you eat gluten-free foods, bloating may come soon after.
When you have a food allergy, the immune system, which usually fights infections, sees food as an invader. This leads to an immune reaction in which chemicals such as histamine are released, causing symptoms such as breathing problems, hoarseness, coughing, bloating.
But bloating is not always associated with food. Sometimes the cause is hormonal. Most women experience mild bloating one to two weeks before menstruation, caused by regular cyclical hormonal changes.
If the bloating at that time of the month is severe, it could be a symptom of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). All PMS-related symptoms improve from the time the period comes.
Some supplements can help relieve PMS, such as vitamin E, vitamin D, thiamine, magnesium, or omega-3 fish oil. You can also eat natural diuretics, such as celery, cucumbers, watermelon, tomatoes, asparagus, melon, and lettuce.
Finally try to take probiotics. Probiotics are living microorganisms that live in our gut and play an essential role in the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. If you suffer from bloating, try taking a probiotic supplement.