We’ve all had that feeling in our pants in which our pant feels a bit tight and belly feels a little too full. But eat right, so what’s up with this heavy feeling?
This heavy feeling is called bloating. It is usually caused by excessive gas production or disruption in intestinal contractions, that helps food pass through the digestive system. It causes pain, discomfort and the feeling of being “stuffed”. As per studies, women tend to experience more bloating than men, usually around the time of menstruation. Bloating tends to worsen day by day due to the ingestion of food, and is relieved by the passage of gas, stool, from some basic steps and home remedies
If you want to get rid of a bloated stomach, Understanding what causes bloating is the first part to determining how to reduce it.
What causes bloating?
The trapped air in digestive system causes bloating. That air is either unintentionally swallowed or produced by gut bacteria during digestion. Here are some spooky things that causes bloating and are its culprit:
- Eating too fast
- Chewing gum
- Carbonated beverages
- Hard-to-digest foods such as fatty, fried and spicy
- Hormonal fluctuations
- Food intolerances (gut sensitivity)
Here are some steps to reduce bloating naturally:
- Chew slowly: No matter how hungry you are, always allow time for mindful eating. Chew food properly before swallowing at one bite a time. When you rush during meals, you not only risk your nutrients absorption but also swallow more air, which causes that uneasy bloated feeling.
- Limit some vegetables: Vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and bok choy, can cause a build-up of gas. When these undigested vegetables travel to the colon, bacteria ferments the undigested food in the intestines, which creates bloating and gas. But, this doesn't mean you need to ditch cauliflower and other veggies altogether. Though, cooking them can help break them down as cooked greens are better tolerated than raw.
- Consume smaller meals more frequently: People who are habitual to bloating might be a little more sensitive to larger volumes of food. For this, eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day can help reduce stomach bloating. This eating pattern helps to stabilize blood sugar levels and satisfy appetite. It also aids in a more efficient metabolism and a more efficient metabolism allows your body to use protein, fats and carbohydrates to properly fuel your body
- Prefer probiotics: Probiotics are a strain of good bacteria that provide gut benefits when eaten in the right amount. Once in the colon, these bacteria multiply and help to keep a balance between the good and bad bacteria. This helps to reduce the symptoms of gas and bloating. Probiotics are found naturally in fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, kimchi sauerkraut, tempeh, kombucha, miso and pickles.
- Check out any food intolerance: Eating foods that are intoleran to you can cause extreme gas and bloating. Common food intolerances include: Lactose – people who are lactose intolerant find it hard to digest lactose (the sugar in milk) because of low levels of the enzyme lactase, which digests the milk sugar. Gluten – people who are gluten intolerance find it hard to digest a protein called gluten which is mainly found in wheat, barley, and rye.
- Avoid sugary alcohols: Sugar-free mints, chewing gums, and desserts often use sugar alcohols, such as sorbitol and xylitol to create that sweet flavour with less calories. Sugar alcohols negatively affect some individuals because their body does not produce the enzymes required to digest it, so they make it pretty much intact to the colon, feeding the gut flora. In some individuals this can cause excessive gas and bloating.
- Peppermint tea or oil: Peppermint is an extremely important remedy for the treatment of a bloated stomach. It has muscle relaxing properties in stomach as well as intestinal tract that speeds up the early phase of digestion. Consume peppermint tea or its oil to extract is benefits. To peppermint tea, take 8-10 leaves and boil in it a cup of water for 10-15 minutes and enjoy its delectable and soothing taste.
- Curcumin & Ginger: Ginger and curcumin (turmeric) are another traditional indigestion and bloating remedy. They have anti-inflammatory, antiemetic and carminative properties, which aid in the brekdown of gas and support healthy bowel movement. Sipping on ginger and turmeric tea or taking their tablet before a meal stimulets rhythmic contractions of the intestines which move things along easily and prevent bloating.
- Papaya: Papaya contains an enzyme called papain, which works as a mild laxative, helping the body to eliminate excess waste and provides relief from digestive problems such as constipation and gastrointestinal issues that is the main cause of bloating. Itcontains a good source of fibre, which helps the body's elimination process, reducing gas, bloating and digestive discomfort.
- Abdominal massage: Some gut experts recommend massaging the abdomen for some instant belly-bloat relief. For abdomen massage, start from the right lower belly and move around clockwise several times, while lying down with your knees bent and relaxing. Abdominal massages help relieve constipation, a common culprit of bloat. Also, doing yoga poses to help ease digestion. Bending forward and twisting postures encourage movement of the intestines, helping move gas along and reduce bloating.