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Bloating Unmasked! - Exploring the root causes

We have all had it at some point, you know that uncomfortable sensation or pain you get when your stomach feels full and tight, or your abdomen starts to blow up like a balloon after eating. For some it might just be the feeling of wanting to release gas, by belching, burping or flatulence, for others it's a full on bloat fest.


Some days it can be minor, where you may only experience it for part of the day, with a small rise in stomach appearance, then for others it can come on at the start of the day, last all day, make you feel and look pregnant. It can make your clothes feel so much tighter that you're pleased you wore those elastic band pants and didn't even attempt to go clothes shopping but managed shoe shopping instead.


Whilst being a common complaint, and can happen at any age, bloating is both a symptom and a contributing factor in various gut related issues.


By understanding the underlying reasons behind it and what your personnel triggers are, it can help you take active steps towards finding relief or seeking help to prevent it altogether through addressing your root cause.


However it happens for you, you're at that point where you've "just had enough".


Here are just some of the common and not so well known reasons for bloating that I see and take into account when I am working with clients.


  1. Gas-Producing Foods: Certain foods are known to produce gas during digestion, leading to bloating. These include beans, lentils, broccoli, cabbage, onions, and high-fiber foods. Consuming these foods in large quantities or for individuals with sensitivities can contribute to bloating.

  2. Food Intolerances: Food intolerances, such as lactose intolerance or gluten sensitivity, can cause the inability of the body to digest certain components of the food leading to digestive discomfort and bloating.

  3. Swallowing Air: Eating or drinking too quickly, using straws, chewing gum, or talking while eating can introduce excess air into the digestive system, leading to bloating. Being mindful of these habits can help reduce swallowed air and minimize bloating.

  4. Overeating: Consuming large quantities of food can stretch the stomach, causing a feeling of fullness and bloating.

  5. Constipation: Sluggish bowel movements where stools can build up in the colon, along with inadequate fiber intake (or even to much fiber in some cases), and dehydration can contribute to constipation. Maintaining regular bowel movements is essential for optimal digestive health.

  6. Digestive Disorders: Certain digestive disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), can cause chronic or recurrent bloating. These conditions often involve abnormal gut motility, bacterial imbalances, or inflammation in the digestive tract and need special dietary requirements (FODMAPs) and specific testing (breathe testing and/or microbiome mapping) for bloating to cease.

  7. Impaired Digestion: Low stomach acid, or enzyme deficiencies can disrupt the digestion process, resulting in bloating and discomfort.

  8. Slow Digestion: Delayed or slow digestion can cause food to remain in the digestive tract for longer periods, leading to fermentation by gut bacteria and gas production, resulting in bloating.

  9. Hormonal Changes: Hormonal fluctuations, particularly during menstruation, can cause water retention and bloating in some individuals. This type of bloating is temporary and typically resolves after the hormonal cycle has passed.

  10. Carbonated Drinks: Carbonated beverages release carbon dioxide gas, which can contribute to bloating. The bubbles in these drinks can accumulate in the stomach and lead to discomfort and bloating.

  11. Stress: Not only does it slow digestion down, it also contributes to an imbalance in the gut microbiota, fermentation of food and gas production which contributes to bloating.


Does one or more of these reasons resonate with you?


While the impact of these reasons can vary from person to person and identifying the underlying cause is essential, the good news is that you can start making changes today.


Let's get you started on becoming bloat free!


Keep a food diary and pay special attention to how your body responds to what you are eating so you can identify your specific triggers and remove them from your daily diet, whether they be gas producing foods or food sensitivities.


Slow down when you are eating, and don't over eat, it's not a race. Taking time to eat, chewing your food (not gum) thoroughly and not over fulling the stomach helps your digestive juices and enzymes do their job, properly breaking down the food that you have just eaten. Make sure that each meal contains a protein, carb and fat for better digestion.


Ditch the bubbles and drink water. If you are drinking carbonated drinks it doesn't make sense to add gas when you are trying to get rid of gas, so if you have to have them, save them for special occasions. However, drinking water will not only help to relieve constipation, but it helps to move gas producing toxins out of the body. Try to sip not guzzle often between meals throughout the day so that you don't become water bloated but still get your daily intake in.

You could even try a peppermint or chamomile tea, both great for calming digestion and bloating.


Move your body. Exercises like walking or yoga can stimulate the muscles in the abdomen, facilitating the movement of gas through the intestines, reduce bloating and help with stress.




Spice it up: Herbs and spices are great additions to meals to help relieve digestive upsets and bloating. Try using fennel, cumin, coriander and ginger in your meals.




Book in with me: If you feel that your bloating and your gut health needs more support, targeted relief strategies and further investigation, let's book a free discovery call and chat about how I can help you further. https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/contact


Or contact me at paulagrubbnutrition@gmail.com We can meet online or in clinic


Don't forget to grab my freebie before you leave, you can find it here https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/


Embrace the journey towards a bloat-free and thriving gut!



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