4 Tips to Get Rid of Bloating
Do you experience frequent bloating? While common, bloating can be incredibly annoying and uncomfortable. It also makes it harder to eat healthy or lead an active lifestyle comfortably.
Certain lifestyle habits and conditions, including diet, may be to blame. But luckily certain foods and habits can get rid of bloating to get you back to feeling your best.
What is Bloating?
Bloating is an uncomfortable condition where your belly feels full and tight, often as a result of gas or indigestion. It may occur after meals, or at random times throughout the day when you wouldn’t expect it.
What Causes Bloating?
Bloating can be caused by many factors, but it can be challenging to determine the exact trigger. I work with my nutrition clients and their medical team to help uncover the root cause.
One common cause of acute or chronic bloating is constipation. It’s possible to be constipated and not realize it, but having fewer bowel movements than usual can trigger bloating. If you strain to go to the bathroom, don’t go every day, or don’t feel empty after a bowel movement, this can make your stomach feel tight or overly full.
Eating too much of anything can cause bloating. My clients often ask me if there is a certain food that is causing it, which sometimes is the case, but many times it's just that they are eating too much food in general. If you are eating too fast or eating past the point of comfortable fullness, this can lead to some serious bloat.
Certain food sensitivities such as celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, or lactose intolerance can cause bloat after eating an offending food. Many people are also sensitive to certain sugars or fibers and require a special diet called the low FODMAP diet to manage it.
Depending on the severity of the sensitivity, you may be able to simply decrease the amount of a specific food, but still enjoy it in moderation. In more severe cases, you may need to completely avoid it. In either case, focusing on the foods that help with bloating prevents you from feeling restricted.
Bloating can also be caused by an underlying digestive disorder such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), gastroparesis, or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). These conditions can lead to altered digestion and bloating as a side effect.
If you suffer from chronic bloating and have not found any specific triggers for it, ask your doctor to screen for these conditions.
4 Tips to Get Rid of Bloating
Here are 4 easy ways to start reducing your bloat today.
Drink more water
Dehydration leads to constipation, which leads to bloat. Drinking more water facilitates healthy digestion, and helps nutrients to flow through your body more easily. The general recommendation is to consume at least 64 ounces of water per day. It’s recommended to speak to a registered dietitian or medical doctor about your individual needs.
2. Modify your diet
Certain foods are more likely to trigger bloat, and others may reduce it. In general, the following foods are more likely to lead to bloating –
Beans and lentils
Carbonated beverages or drinking from a straw
On the contrary, there are foods that help with bloating –
Fermented foods (yogurt, kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut)
Keep in mind that everyone’s experience varies, and the best way of knowing which foods, if any, are triggers for you is through a guided process with a professional.
3. Stay active
Physical activity will always help to beat the bloat. Cardio exercise is especially helpful such as walking, jogging, or a bike ride can help expel gas and propel digested food along faster.
Keep moving daily to help keep bloat at bay. If bloat does come up, going for a brisk walk can help.
4. Limit sodium
While we all need some sodium, or salt, in our diet, overdoing it can leave you feeling very bloated. This is because excess sodium causes your body to retain water, expanding your belly in the process.
Consume sodium in moderation by choosing more whole, unprocessed foods and adding herbs and spices for flavor in place of salt.
The Bottom Line
If you’re tired of feeling bloated, these tips to get rid of bloating can help. If you’ve tried all the things and need more support, we’re here to provide a helping hand.
For individualized support to determine the root cause of your bloating, get on our waitlist to apply for nutrition coaching today.