What Causes A Bloated Stomach?

Bloated StomachI have found in my research that a bloated stomach can result from a variety of symptoms that can range from minor to major medical conditions. I’ll list them in order of medical severity:

1.    How You Eat

  • Swallowing too much air when you eat (Aerophagia) as a result of eating too quickly, talking while you eat, or drinking out of sports bottles, can introduce excessive amounts of air into your stomach while you digest. Take time to relax while you eat (rather than grabbing something ‘on the go’) and chew your food!
  • Overeating can also result in a bloated stomach. If you skip meals and then overeat in the evening, the large amount of food consumed can contribute to gastric distention, where the stomach is enlarged by pockets of air.

2.    What You Eat

  • Fizzy drinks, including sodas and sparkling water, are highly carbonated. That gas will sit in your stomach until it is released either as a burp or at the other end of your digestive system.
  • Certain foods are known to be gas-producing: legumes (beans), vegetables such as cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli, and onions, and some dairy products such as milk and cheese. A balanced diet in moderation should help here.
  • Excessive dietary fiber, such as the amounts consumed in a high fiber diet, can cause a bloated stomach. Introduce the higher amounts of fiber gradually to allow your body to adjust.

3.    Food Intolerance/Allergies

  • Lactose intolerance (the inability to digest and metabolize lactose, a sugar found in milk) is a well-known contributor to stomach bloating. Wheat intolerance can also cause discomfort but should be carefully diagnosed to make sure that you don’t have a specific allergy to the wheat protein gluten, which can cause an abnormal immune system reaction for sufferers of celiac disease.

4.    Menstruation

  • A woman’s menstrual cycle can often prompt constipation that keeps the food in the stomach longer, fermenting more, and producing more gas. Increased water and fiber consumption can help here.

5.    Irritable Bowel Syndrome

  • Stomach bloating is a recognized symptom of the intestinal disorder known as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). IBS causes stomach pain, cramping, diarrhea or constipation in addition to stomach bloating. For more information on the suspected causes of IBS, review the other posts on this blog.

6.    Bowel Obstruction

  • Even a partial bowel obstruction can restrict the flow of food through the digestive system. The longer that food is allowed to sit in your stomach, the more fermentation is allowed to take place, producing gas that increases pressure and that may distend your stomach.

7.    Inflammatory Bowel Disease

  • Inflammation of the bowel and small intestine can lead to stomach pain, severe cramps, and diarrhea. However, these symptoms could be indicative of serious medical conditions such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease and you should seek immediate medical treatment if the symptoms persist.

 

Warning

My blog is for information purposes only – as a fellow sufferer of many of these conditions, I have done a lot of research and wanted to share that material with as many people as possible. Do not self-diagnose your condition – many of these symptoms can be indicative of bigger health problems. I have found that taking a supplement like RezVera has been very helpful for me, but if you’re experiencing severe or chronic stomach bloating that is frequent or prolonged, consult a doctor for a full medical diagnosis.

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