Do you always feel heavy, slow and lazy after a feast or after eating a certain type of food? Feeling gassy, all over the place with a stomach that looks like it has been inflated by helium? Then, that right there is bloating.
What is bloating?
This is when the stomach, specifically the gastrointestinal tract gets filled by air or gas. It is commonly accompanied by some abdominal pain, in most cases.
What causes bloating?
Eating too fast.
Imagine eating quickly and while at that, the air around your mouth also gets involved in this process. That’s when bloating comes in. As you eat fast you also swallow air way too quickly therefore bloating is meant to occur eventually
Dentist all over the world advice that when drinking liquids such as apple cider vinegar or anything acidic a metallic straw should be used. While this is good for our teeth, it’s not as friendly to our guts. As we use straws, air also gets in the middle of the drinking and hence into the stomach, causing bloating.
Refined sugars, processed foods are the key to a quick and “efficient” way to get bloated. This is so because the breaking down of these foods in the gut is either difficult or gut unfavourable. Some like lactose may go undigested in some people.
Other healthy foods may include beans, which have complex sugars that take an eternity to get digested, some dairy products for those lactose intolerant folks alongside onions, lentils and
Lack of gut bacteria
Absence of good bacteria that help in the breakdown of food can make one bloat. These gut-friendly bacterias can be found in yoghurt and most dairy products.
Eating too much causes indigestion, which later attracts bloating because the process of digesting food is too slow.
Changes or fluctuation of the hormone estrogen and progesterone may cause abdominal bloating and sometimes accompanied by pain
During this time these hormones retain water and salt in stomach cells causing that bloated feeling.
So you are having problems with your stool and you try to go for a long call but nothing comes out.
Well, the more the waste stays in your colon, the more bacteria is formed through fermentation. When it occurs, gases from the bacteria starts getting released into the gut hence constipation.
Too much fiber
Fibre is good for the gut, but if it is consumed more than 70 grams, bloating is meant to occur. The more the fibre, the more energy the stomach needs to digest it. If the stomach can not digest it all at once, bloating will occur.
If the bloating is overboard and runs for a long time, seek medical assistance. Other causes could be colon cancer, liver problems and another complex disease.
How can you prevent bloating?
Avoid certain types of food
Processed food such as fries, burgers, take away pizzas, unnatural sugars such as sweets, cakes and other healthy foods such as onions, beans and lentils. All of these can cause bloating. So try as much as possible to avoid them or have them in moderation.
Try having probiotics before a meal. It can be in the form of supplements or you can have it from drinks such as plain yoghurt.
Drinking a lot of water
Water will never suffice in your diet and in your well being. Consume at least 4 to 6 litres of water per day. Also, drink at least a litre before any meal
Avoid straws when you can
Take time to eat your food. Make sure you are eating slowly and chewing more to make it easier for the digestive system to digest the food.
Avoid chewing gum
When you have bad breathed and you just want to reach out for that sugar-free gum, reckon about how it’s going to affect your gut. Do you really need it? Can you access any other method of feeling refreshed in your mouth apart from chewing?
If you need a fresh mouth I suggest cucumber. It is known to eliminate mouth odour almost instantly. Place it on top of your mouth
Have some fibre
Fibre is well known to be good for digestion. When I was younger and suffering from constipation my mother made sure I ate a lot of fibre rich foods to aid with the latter.
So quick advice have some fibre in your diet to avoid the consequences of bloating and constipation.
If you can add some probiotics supplements and any supplements that aid the stomach before it gets to bloating, in your morning routine, it will be of great help to your gut.
How can you de-bloat?
Have some tea
Chamomile tea and dandelion tea are some of the best teas to consume when you have a bloated stomach.
Acupressure, when applied to the stomach area, helps with de-bloating.
Use your palm to count two steps from your belly button area. Right at the top of the palm at the second step use your finger to massage clockwise for a minute or so and then anti-clockwise. It will relieve the pressure.
Stomach stretches can help aid with bloating reduction. Do slow and gentle stretches and include some yoga as well.
Gas relief over the counter syrups
Gas relief syrups and tablets are a must in your home cabinet, for that in case of bloating cases, in the middle of the night or even during the day.
Have a banana
Bananas are great for that gassy and bloating feeling in the stomach. Have at least one for that needed relief.
Have a warm bath
Soak in a bathtub full of Epsom salts for at least 30 mins and this works really well considering the Epsom salts in the tub are at work.
Take a walk
Have a brisk walk around the house or around your home area, this should help ease that bloating.
Essentials oils such as rose oil, lavender might be of help. Try massaging them with acupressure on your belly area and feel the relief.
Have some lemon water
Lemon water first thing in the morning helps the digestive system to open up and let the food have easy digestion after.
Top 5 foods that helps with bloating
5 things you must do to skip bloating
1. Skip refined & processed foods
2. Skip the unatural sugar
3. Incorporate anti-inflammatory foods & fats
4. Reduce stress
5. Gut friendly foods
6. Going to bed on time
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