There’s nothing worse than the feeling that comes with a bloated tummy. Most people who have issues with this feel extreme discomfort after a meal. If you want to avoid some of these uncomfortable sensations, you may be surprised to learn some of them are caused by your behaviors.
True, you can’t help conditions like irritable bowel or celiac that will cause a bloated tummy, but other things you’re doing can contribute. For instance, loading up on carbs and sugar isn’t going to do your digestive system or your stomach any good.
Twelve Habits That Cause A Bloated Tummy
If you’re wondering what you can change to avoid unbuckling your pants after every meal, then you will be happy to learn that you have many options. You can control much of the bloating with some simple alterations to your diet. Here are the 12 most common things that cause a swollen stomach.
1. Eating Too Much Salt
Salt in excess can cause the body to retain water, which is why you will feel bloated. You must now understand that you need some salt to keep your electrolytes in balance, but you need to control the amount you consume. Many things harbor a great deal of salt, like canned soups, lunch meats, and store-bought broths.
When you cut back on these items, you should see a noticeable difference in your bloating problems. Additionally, the inflammation caused by excessive salt is not suitable for your heart either. Thankfully, there are reduced salt options in things like canned soups so that you can enjoy them without any issues.
2. Drinking Soda
One person can drink six cans of soda a day, while another person can have one carbonated beverage and feel like they’re going to explode. Any drink with carbonation, or those fizzy bubbles that everyone loves, can cause bloating.
Beware of seltzers, champagne, soda, sparkling waters, and anything that fizzes. You know that these drinks are full of gas because you immediately need to burp when taking a sip. Another issue with these drinks is many are loaded with sugar.
Sugar is another substance that will make you have a bloated tummy, and sugar will make you gain weight. Choose water with a little bit of lemon for a healthy drink that won’t cause any bloating.
3. You’re Consuming Dairy While Lactose Intolerant
According to Medical News Today, there are roughly 50 million people in this country who are lactose intolerant. Sadly, many keep eating dairy products even though it brings them great discomfort. When you have an allergen to cow’s milk, any products that use it can cause you to have a bloated tummy.
If you get painful gas, bloating, and diarrhea after eating things like cheese, yogurt, ice cream, and pudding, then it’s a sign that you have an intolerance issue. Avoiding these foods can help you to resolve this ongoing issue.
4. You’re Constipated from a Lack of Water
Soda and juice taste good, but they won’t help you move your digestive system along like h20. When you don’t drink enough water, it doesn’t help your waste pass through the body efficiently, and you can become constipated. Why do you think the medical community is continuously saying that you need at least eight glasses of water a day?
When you are in a semi-dehydrated state, your bowels can’t move, and you become constipated. Constipation is a horrible feeling, and if it lingers for days, you can feel the effects in a bloated stomach. The excess of gas and fecal matter can make you feel miserable.
5. You’re Eating Too Fast
Do you like to chow down at mealtime? You may be eating way too fast and causing bloating problems. When you eat too quickly, you allow excess air to get into your stomach, which causes swelling and discomfort.
Did you know that it takes roughly 20 minutes for your stomach to signal the brain that you’re full? You may overeat when you eat so fast that your brain cannot get the single until the damage has already been done. Then, you’re going to be miserable for a while until all the gas in your intestines settles.
6. You’re Eating More Fat Than Healthy Foods
Your body needs a certain amount of healthy fat to nourish your cells and keep your system going. However, with fast food diets and those that praise eating high amounts of fat, it’s possible to give your body too much of a good thing. The problem is that fat is more challenging for your system to break down than other foods, so it lingers, causing bloating and discomfort.
7. Using Milk Alternatives with Carrageenan in It
Well, here’s something you may not know. Many people switch from dairy milk because of lactose intolerance, but they choose soy milk or other alternative varieties with carrageenan. What is carrageenan? Well, it’s a thickening agent that can cause you to bloat and have digestion issues.
There are many alternatives to dairy products on the market these days, and most of these products are good. However, you need to make sure you read the labels as you may be sensitive to carrageenan.
8. You’re Binging on Sugar-Free Snacks
It would be effortless to write a book on the dangers of sugar substitutes. These “faux” sugars are not meant to be absorbed by the body, and they can wreak havoc on your system. Things like sorbitol, xylitol, erythritol, and maltitol are known as sugar alcohols.
The body doesn’t digest as much of these as it does traditional sugars, but it doesn’t digest them is a big problem. The vast majority experience some discomfort when they eat anything with these products in them.
You can feel bloated, dizzy, have diarrhea, and feel miserable. Try using all-natural sweeteners like stevia, honey, and monk fruit.
9. Consuming FODMAP Carbs
The acronym FODMAP stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols. It sounds confusing, but it’s a carbohydrate type that cannot be properly digested in the small intestines.
The way your body is designed, these foods aren’t digested until they get nearly to the end of your intestines as the bacteria in your gut needs them to thrive. Sadly, it causes an uncomfortable gas problem and a bloated tummy.
What foods have these FODMAPs in them? Well, if you’re sensitive, you should avoid things like:
- Whole Grains
- Wheat Pasta
- Rye Bread
- Dairy Products
10. You’re Snacking on Too Much Dried Fruit
First, it must be said that you need to eat fresh fruit whenever possible. However, if you get a craving for some dried fruit, it works on the go. The only problem is that many people experience a challenge when eating it due to fructose malabsorption.
When a food is high in fructose, it causes the body problems during the digestive process. Dried fruits have a higher fructose rate than regular fruit, and it can cause you to experience bloating issues. While it’s a great source of nutrients and fiber, it should be enjoyed in moderation.
11. Piling on The Nutrition Bars
Protein is king in the dieting industry, but many protein sources come from soy products. If you want to avoid something as gas-inducing as the musical fruit, limit your protein intake and other nutrition bars. These meal and snack replacement options have a good premise, but the goal is to stop at one.
12. You’re Overeating
It’s effortless to overeat. Think of the holiday season or a summer picnic where you tend to forget how much you should eat safely. You almost always pay the price later with a bloated tummy, digestive upset, and feeling miserable.
Did you know that your stomach is only about the size of a fist? According to research, it can stretch up to 40 times its original size. The larger your stomach, the more you need to fill it up. When you consume too much food, it causes all sorts of distress.
It’s best to pace yourself and go slow when you’re at a feast. Chew each bite about 20 times and take a sip of water afterward. It will help you to avoid overeating and the misery that comes with it.
Final Thoughts on Habits That Cause A Bloated Tummy
Having an upset stomach, indigestion, bloated tummy, exhaustion, and diarrhea is no fun. Yet, these all seem to be the common clues that there is a digestive issue. Whether you’re eating dairy foods when you shouldn’t, or you have eaten way more than your stomach can handle, it can all cause gas and upset that makes you sick.
By making a few alterations to your diet and dietary habits, you can learn to say goodbye to the boated tummy and the feeling that you need to unbutton your pants to catch your breath.