Dehydration: Your Worst Enemy
As we mentioned previously, dehydration can cause you to retain water, which then triggers bloating.So what, exactly, causes dehydration? You can become dehydrated when you:
- Get too much sun or a lot of exposure to heat.
- Drink too much alcohol.
- Eat salty snacks.
When you’re in the sun too long, your body starts retaining water as a safety measure. Think of it as a form of self-defense, since your body doesnt know when it will have its next intake of fluid. Yet even as your body is conserving water, the retention is what may also cause you to feel bloated.
Its important to note that serious illness can result from being dehydrated. You should get help right away if you have one or more of these symptoms after being in the sun too long or you havent been staying hydrated:
- Intense thirst
- Dry mouth, lips, and eyes
- Urinating no more than four times a day
Here are a few tips on healthy hydration.
Do Supplements Help Relieve Bloating
Many people believe daily use of probiotics is a cure for bloat, but Dr. Brown points out that there has not been any conclusive evidence that shows it works. There is no harm in trying one, though. Some studies suggest that a multi-organism probiotic that requires refrigeration works better than one that contains only one species of organism and is stored on the shelf, he says.
If you are looking for immediate relief from bloating, Dr. Brown says immediate relief may be possible with simethicone, a medication that is available over the counter under brands like Gas-X and equate. “About 80 to 120 milligrams of a chewed tablet with meals can help, he shares.
Although daily fiber intake can help with bowel movements and overall digestion, consuming large quantities of a fiber supplement such as Metamucil and or Citrucel actually worsens most bloating, says Dr. Brown, so cool it with these supplements if you are feeling a bit puffed up.
Again, bloat typically goes away on its own within 24 hours, but here are some short- and long-term solutions to help the process along and prevent it from happening.
Some over-the-counter probiotic supplements can cause gas, bloating, or other GI symptoms, but chowing down on real foods packed with this healthy gut bacteria can be beneficial, says Courtney Schuchmann, RD, a dietitian at the University of Chicago Medicine.
I know, it’s amazing, but there’s a side effect to all that no-cal sippingbelly bloat.
Bloating : Why You Feel Bloated
Bloating, gassiness, and abdominal discomfort arenât limited to the occasional holiday feast. One in 10 Americans say they suffer from bloating regularly, even when they havenât eaten a large meal. In some cases, bloating can become severe enough that it causes distention, or a perceptible swelling of the abdomen. Bloating and gas are usually tied to what and how you eat, so a few simple changes may help.
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How To Get Rid Of A Severely Bloated Belly
Extreme Bloating of your belly, are you fed up with it? How to get rid of a severely bloated abdomen. Stop painful stomach bloating and never have to deal with a swollen, distended or bloated belly again!
How to fix and get rid of an extremely bloated stomach at the root cause not just temporary relief. Find out what causes a severely bloated stomach even if you eat healthy.
Looking at my picture you would think that Im pregnant, because I was so ridiculously bloated, but I was a far cry from being pregnant!
I dont know how many of you out there have had to deal with a severe bloated belly like this, but anyone who has knows that it is one of the most uncomfortable and depressing situation to be in.
Super Bloated, Not Pregnant!!
This extreme bloating is what I lived with for far too long!
Do you bloat up excessively and painfully no matter what you eat and even when you do not eat? And, your belly bloating up from what you drink!
Has your swollen belly become so severe that it is causing pain all around your torso including back pain and pain when you breathe?
That was me too, but not anymore! I do not have to deal with any stomach bloating, not slight bloating or severe bloating absolutely no bloating at all.
You Drink A Lot Of Soda
The same tiny bubbles that give soda and sparkling water that bubbly sensation also cause your stomach to swell, Middleberg said. Diet soda is an even worse bloater since artificial sweeteners can’t be digested.
You can cut down on carbonation by leaving the drink open for a few hours before drinking it or by pouring the drink into a cup with ice cubes.
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You Ate A Lot Of Carbs
Carbs seem harmless enough, but there are a few ways they can cause your stomach to puff up, Deborah Cohen, DCN, RDN, an associate professor at the Rutgers School of Health Professions Clinical and Preventive Nutritional Sciences Department, told Health. Complex carbs like garbanzo beans, kidney beans, black beans, pinto beans, split peas, and lentils are high in fiber and they can cause gas and bloating. It’s all thanks to the bacteria in your gut, which produces gas as a byproduct of digesting fiber.
That doesn’t mean you should ditch all high fiber foods, though. Instead, Cohen said, you can pivot to foods with fiber that won’t cause you to puff up, like tomatoes, zucchini, lettuce, cucumbers, and green beans.
If you have a gluten sensitivity, eating carbs that contain gluten like bread or crackers can lead to bloat, Cohen said. If you suspect this is what’s behind your bloat, Cohen recommended consulting your healthcare provider or a nutritionist for dietary guidance.
What Causes Pregnancy Bloating
It might seem as though your jeans start to feel snug as soon as the pregnancy test comes back positive and you can thank the pregnancy hormone progesterone for that puffy phenomenon.
While progesterone is essential for maintaining a healthy pregnancy , it also triggers that oh-so-delightful trio: bloating, burping and passing gas.
Why? Progesterone causes the smooth muscle tissue in your body to relax. This slows down digestion, giving the nutrients from food you eat more time to enter your bloodstream and reach your baby. That’s the good news.
The bad news is this slower digestion when you’re pregnant can cause you to feel bloated and bring on a cramp or two .
Whats more, your expanding uterus places increasing pressure on your rectum, which can wreak havoc on muscle control and lead to the passing of some serious wind.
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When To Ask Your Doctor About Bloating
Temporary bloating is common and nothing to worry about. But if youâre troubled by bloating on a regular basis, talk to your doctor.
Physical obstructions such as scarring of the stomach opening can make it hard for food to pass through the digestive tract normally. If your doctor diagnoses a physical obstruction in the stomach or small intestines, surgery may be needed to correct it. Bloating can also be caused by impaired muscle function in the digestive tract. When muscles that normally move food along donât work properly, gas can build up in the small intestines, causing bloating. In some cases, gas in the intestines may go the wrong way, returning to the stomach.
Persistent bloating or distention may also signal potentially serious conditions, such as enlargement of one of the abdominal organs or a malignancy.
Causes Of Serious Bloating You Need To Know About And What To Do About Them
1. Ovarian cancer isnt the most likely, but it is one of the most lethal. Although ovarian cancer is only the fifth most common cancer in women, it causes more deaths than any other reproductive cancer mostly in women over 50. Risk factors include never having children or having them late in life, obesity, a family history of ovarian cancer, certain genetic abnormalities, and long-term treatment with hormone replacement therapy. Persistent bloating, feeling full faster, and pelvic pain are typical symptoms.
What to do if youre concerned about ovarian cancer:
A thorough pelvic exam or transvaginal ultrasound is the best way to diagnose ovarian cancer. The blood test CA-125 isnt a reliable screening test, but it can be helpful for following the course of treatment after diagnosis.
2. Uterine cancer. In addition to bloating, uterine cancer can cause abnormal vaginal bleeding, a watery or blood-tinged vaginal discharge, pelvic pain, or pain with intercourse or urination. But its important to know that sometimes bloating or a change in bowel habits may be the only initial signs of uterine cancer. Important risk factors include taking tamoxifen taking estrogen supplements that dont also contain progesterone radiation therapy a family history of uterine cancer or a family history of a form of inherited colon cancer called Lynch syndrome.
What to do if youre concerned about uterine cancer:
What to do if youre concerned about colon cancer:
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Why Is My Stomach Bloated
The most common cause of stomach pain and bloating is excess intestinal gas. If you get a bloated stomach after eating, it may be a digestive issue. It might be as simple as eating too much too fast, or you could have a food intolerance or other condition that causes gas and digestive contents to build up. Your menstrual cycle is another common cause of temporary bloating. Sometimes a bloated stomach can indicate a more serious medical condition.
When Should I Speak To A Doctor About Bloating
If your bloating is persistent, making you uncomfortable, and you dont seem to get relief from these lifestyle tips, its best to speak to a GP to rule out a more serious condition.
Although its not one of the most common reasons for bloating and feeling full, this can also be a symptom of ovarian cancer.There are many different reasons for bloating, mostly linked to lifestyle and dietary habits, but sometimes an underlying medical condition, says Dr Rhianna McClymont.
If youre worried about your bloating, or youve noticed other symptoms like unexplained weight loss, changes in your bowel pattern or blood in your poo, then you should speak to a doctor.
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Can Bloating Be Prevented
To keep your digestive system working well, follow a healthy diet and eat at least 30g of fibre every day. Cut down on processed and fatty foods, and drink less alcohol. Drink plenty of water and take any medicines as directed by your doctor.
Dont overeat, and try to eat more slowly. Eating regularly will help to prevent digestive problems.
Regular exercise is also important for your gut because it strengthens the muscles in your tummy and stimulates the digestive system to push food through. It also helps with stress, which affects the nerves in the digestive system and can slow down digestion.
Smoking is very bad for your digestion. If you smoke, try to quit now.
Where Does It Start
But what do we think is leading to this bowel distension and discomfort? Well, there are multiple things to talk about. Lets start with the food choices were making, because thats often where it starts. And some people know that. They say, if I eat XYZ, I always get bloated, but if I dont eat those foods, Im okay. So some people know which foods cause it for them, and those can actually vary from person to person, but well talk about that in just a moment. But a cause of bloating could be the foods that were eating.
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When Is It Serious
Most of the time, you can manage bloating on your own. But if you also feel weak or lose your appetite, or have diarrhea, weight loss, fever, belly pain, or blood in your stool, talk to your doctor. To find out whatâs going on, they may take a stool sample or an X-ray of your small intestine, or test you for lactose intolerance or celiac disease.
Why Bloating Happens And How To Prevent It
Today, people of all shapes and sizes will stare down at their waistbands, dumbfounded by a button so easily clasped just the other day. Bloating happens even to the leanest of people, but there are steps you can take to reduce bloating before it starts. Follow these tips to keep those skinny jeans front and center in your wardrobe.
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Food Sensitivities And Intolerances
Some people just have a hard time digesting certain foods, like gluten, dairy, or even raw vegetables. So, before diagnosing a more serious problem, Cohen will have patients start by eliminating common culprits like added sugars, gluten, and dairy to find out if food sensitivities may be the real issue. That kind of clears the muddy waters, Cohen says. Then, if youre still having issues after removing those foods, common sources of inflammation, your doctor may start testing for other causes, like SIBO or imbalances in the large intestine.
If you want to try an elimination diet, work with a doctor, health coach, or registered dietitian. They can guide you through a personalized program and help you identify the foods that may be exacerbating digestive issues. Theyll also be able to answer questions you have along the way and hold you accountable.
Get More Active Every Day
Exercise helps your body move stool and gas out of the colon and may make bowel movements more regular. Exercise also releases extra sodium from the body through sweating, which can help to relieve water retention.
It is vital to drink plenty of water before and after exercising to stay hydrated, as dehydration can make constipation worse.
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Tips To Reduce Bloating
Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to reduce period bloating, which include:
- Physical activity: Getting regular physical activity has been proven to relieve PMS symptoms like bloating. Aim to exercise most days of the month.
- Diet: Avoid foods that can cause or worsen bloating. Stay away from foods that contain caffeine, salt, or sugar right before and during your period.
- Eat slowly: Eating too quickly can lead to swallowing air, which causes bloating. Try to slow down at meal times and avoid chewing gum and carbonated drinks, as these foods can also result in swallowing air.
- Sleep: A lack of sleep has been linked with increased PMS symptoms. Aim for seven to nine hours of uninterrupted sleep if possible.
- Stress reduction: Women who report feeling stressed are more likely to experience PMS symptoms. Try relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation, and massage to improve your symptoms.
- Avoid tobacco: Smoking may worsen PMS symptoms like bloating.
Empty Stomach Vs Full Stomach
Hunger punch is the medical term for a growling stomach. The stomach produces gas caused by elevated amounts of acid. There is a growling and gnawing feeling in the stomach and overall attributes to an uncomfortable feeling. Stomach gases can also transpire when you are hungry.
On the other hand, loss of appetite can be the cause of vital health issues. If you are feeling bloated and still have no appetite for weeks, there can be significant chances of having some of the following problems:
- Drug reaction- cocaine, heroin, codeine, antibiotics
- Hypothyroidism etc.
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Excess Gas Can Build Up
Gas is a normal part of digestion, but if it builds up in your intestines, it may cause bloating and pain. Gas happens when food that is not digested is broken down in your colon. This process produces methane and hydrogen, which you pass naturally as gas.
If you do experience bloating due to gas, modifying your food intake may help. Here are some common drinks and foods that can cause bloating:
- Foods high in fiber or fat
- Fried and spicy dishes
- Carbonated drinks, such as soda or beer
- Lactose found in milk, cheese and yogurts
Over-the-counter supplements can even trigger bloating.
Other Ways To Reduce Bloating
Bloating is a very common problem, but can often be resolved with relatively simple changes.
There are several strategies that can help reduce bloating, outlined in this article.
If you have persistent digestive problems, then you may want to consider a low-FODMAP diet. It can be incredibly effective, not just for bloating but for other digestive issues as well.
However, make sure to also see a doctor to rule out a potentially serious medical condition.
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You Eat Lots Of Packaged Foods
Once again, the culprit here is sodiumit’s used as a preservative for tons of processed convenience foods. You know that crackers and chips are sodium bombs, but even healthy-looking items such as soups, salad dressings, cereals, and tomato sauce can have high amounts of sodium that easily lead you to exceed the 2,300 mg daily recommended limit.
“It’s a good bet that pretty much any product that comes wrapped in a package contains more sodium than you’d think, and you’re unlikely to even taste the salt,” Brill said. Dodge the belly-bloating effects by reading labels and going for packaged foods that contain less than 500 mg of sodium per serving. And of course, try to cut back on the processed stuff and fill your plate with naturally low-sodium or sodium-free fresh fruits, grains, and veggies.