We’ve all experienced bloating at least once in our life and while it’s not life-threatening, it certainly brings a lot of discomfort. When your belly is so swollen that it doesn’t want to fit into your clothes anymore, consider avoiding foods that may cause bloating.
Lots of processed foods are known to have increased sodium levels, and you might also have the bad habit of using too much salt even in home-cooked meals. Increased consumption of salt inevitably leads to water retention, making you feel bloated. Try to avoid eating too much sodium and quickly you won’t even crave it so much.
Fatty, fried foods
Our body does need fat, but too much of anything can harm us. A lot of fast foods like fried chicken, burgers, French fries and anything deep-fried can contain an excessive amount of fat. Our stomach digests fats slower and throughout this lengthy process gas can build up and cause bloating.
Beans, peas and lentils are an excellent source of dietary fiber, but they can produce a lot of gas during digestion. This usually happens because they are not cooked correctly. If you boil the beans for 2-3 minutes, replace the water and repeat the process 2-3 times, those undesired side-effects will be greatly diminished.
Yes, spices do make food very tasty, but too much of them cause the stomach to produce excess acid and become irritated. Spices and foods that can cause bloat when used in large quantities include black pepper, chilli powder, garlic, onions, curry, nutmeg, horseradish, vinegar and tomato sauce.
The term “diet” in front of any drink or product sounds appealing for a lot of people. The idea of a drink (usually sweet) low in calories is attractive but since it does taste sweet you should realize it includes artificial substances to replace all that sugar. Aspartame, sachharin, xylitol, sorbitol, cyclamates, sucralose and other artificial sweeteners can increase bloating. These substances cannot be digested, remaining in the stomach for long periods of time. As they accumulate, artificial sweeteners support the fermentation of bacteria which releases gas.
Any beverage that is carbonated can cause stomach bloat, because you’re actually drinking some carbon dioxide along with the liquid. The gas accumulates in the stomach bringing us great discomfort. Limit intake of such drinks especially if you have a sensitive, bloat-prone stomach.
All dairy contains lactose (a type of sugar) and it’s not a problem unless you’re lactose-intolerant. When your body is not able to digest lactose, eating dairy products can lead to stomach bloat. Partially digested lactose travels to the colon, where bacteria is trying to break it down further while producing gas.
Most people can eat fruits with no problem whatsoever, but just like with dairy, fruits have their own sugar known as fructose and some are fructose-intolerant. If you feel bloated after eating fruits, it might just be your case too.
Not eating fruits at all is definitely not the best option so at least you can choose low-fructose fruits like apricots and melons while avoiding high-fructose ones like bananas and apples.
Chewing gum can irritate the stomach in a number of ways. First it tells your body that you’re eating so it needs to prepare for digestion and produce more gastric acid. Excess acid in the stomach can lead to unpleasant symptoms like heartburn. Then, it also makes you swallow air as you chew it and make you fell bloated. To top it off, sugar-free chewing gum contains artificial sweeteners, which only worsen the problem.
When starch gets broken down in the large intestine it also produces gas. If starchy foods like potatoes, wheat, maize and pasta make you feel bloated, replace them with rice (it has starches but they don’t cause gas).